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| January 28, 2005 |
By Maurice Healy
Thanks to the repugnant rhetoric of city officials and the boorish behavior
of several hundred pro-abortion activists, San Francisco went a long way
on Jan. 22 to solidify its reputation as one of the most intolerant cities
in the nation.
When two San Francisco Catholic women, Dolores Meehan and Eve Muntean,
voiced their plan to have a Walk for Life West Coast
to mark the 32nd anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Courts Roe v. Wade
decision, San Franciscos pro-abortion establishment reacted with
fear and loathing.
Planned Parenthood, National Abortion Rights Action League and others
in the abortion industry went to work with local politicians. On Jan 11,
the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution
declaring the city to be a pro-choice zone effectively
disenfranchising those citizens of San Francisco who are opposed to abortion
In declaring Stand Up for Choice Day in reaction to
plans for Walk for Life West Coast San Francisco Supervisors sent
a bellicose message to pro-choice activists and a call for aggressive
action. Local Supervisors, who like to think of themselves as liberal
and progressive, called for a reactionary and intolerant response. In
the process, San Franciscos elected officials raised their voices
against freedom of speech and right of assembly.
Despite the Supervisors innate message of Dont come,
dont speak, dont march, a peaceful Walk for Life
West Coast rally at Justin Herman Plaza featured noted women and movements
calling for better treatment for women. At noon, the pro-life throng of
7,000 people young, old, and many families with children began
a procession along the Embarcadero to Marina Green. As the praying, singing
and smiling pro-life people began their route, they were met with loud
insults and vile invective thrown at them by pro-abortion zealots. Many
insults were specifically anti-Catholic.
What was the object of their hatred? The Walk for Life participants who
quietly and purposefully walked behind a banner that simply said, Abortion
hurts Women. The pro-choice activists were enraged to see thousands
of people proceeding under a sea of posters with the simple message, Women
deserve better than abortion. More information is available at www.walkforlifewc.com.
The stage for aggressive behavior by those protesting the Walk for Life
was set at a pro-abortion rally of about 3,000 people held earlier that
morning at Market and Powell. San Francisco elected officials came close
to inciting mayhem in their harsh rhetoric condemning the Walk for Life
About 1,000 pro-abortion zealots, the most angry and hostile remnant of
the earlier rally, took up positions along the Embarcadero and waited
for the Walk for Life marchers. The worst of these actors shouted obscenities
and vile insults, some with the aid of loud speakers. While many pro-choice
demonstrators lining the route were content to shout derisive opposition,
their muted behavior, by comparison, was overwhelmed by the hate-filled
antagonism of several hundred rabid activists.
San Francisco officials had tried to villainize the pro-life group as
outsiders. This is an epithet that Dr. Martin Luther King,
Jr. easily would have recognized. When King participated in marches for
civil rights in various U.S. cities, he often experienced the same kind
of insults that were thrown at the participants in the Walk for Life.
Worse still, the angry shouts of pro-abortion activists, telling the marchers
to Go back to the Central Valley, were thinly veiled racist
attacks on Hispanic Americans.
Hundreds of San Francisco Police Officers provided a cordon between the
Walk for Life march and pro-abortion protestors positioned on the side
of the roadway. Yet, pro-abortion activists defied police and several
times tried to block the route of the Walk for Life procession. Near Pier
39, the long line of pro-life marchers was delayed. At Fishermans
Wharf, the protestors blocked the route, but a pre-arranged detour allowed
the Walk for Life procession to continue to Marina Green. There, the peaceful
participants in the first ever Walk for Life West Coast joined in a humble
prayer of thanksgiving.
Reprinted with kind permission of Catholic
San Francisco .
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