So I'm doing research for my next book, looking for books and articles on the history of social/political violence in America, and I come across the following article in the Los Angeles Times:
A History of Violence on the Antiabortion Fringe
"Dr. George Tiller's slaying is the latest in a decades-long campaign of shootings, bombings and vandalism carried out by extremists from the mostly peaceful movement.
Reporting from Atlanta — Bombings. Butyric acid attacks. Sniper shootings. Letters filled with fake anthrax. These are some of the tactics used over the years by antiabortion extremists.
The slaying of Dr. George Tiller in his Kansas church Sunday was part of a decades-long history of domestic terrorism aimed at abortion providers, carried out by a small minority of the much broader and generally peaceful movement that opposes abortion." (A History of Violence on the Antiabortion Fringe, Richard Fausset in the Los Angeles Times, June 01, 2009.
Is he talking about me? Am I really part of a decades-long campaign of shootings, bombings and vandalism carried out by antiabortion extremists? That's cool; sort of like being an abolitionist during the nineteenth century. In those days, most people thought the abolitionist's campaign to win the freedom and dignity the Negro slaves were entitled to, by virtue of their humanity, was an extremist campaign too (especially when someone like John Brown was a part of that campaign).
History has shown us that the abolitionists were right. The L.A. Times, or something like it, no doubt said the same things about the abolitionists back then as they say about the antiabortionists today. Most people simply believed whatever they had been told about the issue and never bothered to give much thought to the issue at all. The Negro slaves were considered property, not people (legally, by the U.S. Supreme Court).
George Tiller killed little babies; legally. In fact, he specialized in late-term abortions. Were you or I to have witnessed one of George Tiller's "terminations of a late-term pregnancy", we would have seen it for what it was: the killing of a human child.
Am I an extremist because I act like I take that fact seriously? Because I believe that the unborn child, by virtue of its humanity, has the right to live?
I was surprised when I first heard that "Tiller the Killer" (as he was called by antiabortionists) was dead. I haven't been thinking much about the abortion issue these days, because it upsets me greatly and I'm trying to stay out of trouble, so I didn't even realize that Tiller was still in the baby-killing business. Needless to say, I wasn't at all saddened by the news of his death.
He was, after all, in the death business.