Guest Author - Suzanne Gregory
Picketers against choice are nothing new. They have used everything they can, to make their stance heard including, picketing clinics both performing abortions and those who offer family planning services. They stand outside of these places with their signs, and chant & yell at the women who continue past them.
They can be intimidating, harsh, and downright harassing to the women in need of any number of the services these clinics offer. They are not supportive or caring of the situation that brings a woman to the clinic. These women can simply be there to request birth control. They can be there to have an annual exam, or get testing for STD’s or Aids. The women could be there because of abuse. There are no outwards signs of the intent of any of them.
Protests of these clinics, and the people going in them, occur everyday, and most everywhere. It does not matter to them, what you are there seeking. Anyone on the properties of these clinics, for any reason, incites the verbal assault of the protesters. While most of these protests never include physical confrontation, they clearly can cross the line of verbal and emotional abuse.
They want the women who go to these clinics to choose to have their unborn babies. Therefore, they hold graphic signs, and yell horrible and hurtful things, with the intent of changing their minds. Somehow, surely, all that harassment will sway them to their side.
Recently, in the State of Wisconsin, the NARAL pro-choice Wisconsin Foundation & the Wisconsin Religious Coalition for reproductive rights has taken a huge stand against the harassment of the protesters.
They have joined forces with the Family Planning Health Services (FPHS) clinic in Wausau and the Madison Surgery Center in Madison, just two of the clinics targeted by protesters. They have pledged a campaign called Forty 4 Forty against the anti-choice protesters who harass clinic staff and patients.
The Forty 4 Forty campaign was inspired by the pro-life campaign called 40 days for life. That campaign focuses on 40 constant days of harassment, intimidation, and graphic signs with protesters outside women’s clinics.
FPHS clinic in Wausau will erect a sign outside, showing all the proceeds earned by the presence of the protesters. For every protester that pickets the clinic in Wausau, people can pledge donations that fund reproductive services for women in Wisconsin.
Every pledge will be representative of the 40 days of life protesters and the scare tactics of their cause. In theory, every donation to the forty 4 forty campaign, counter acts the donations for the lifers campaign, a group who traumatize people everyday outside clinics across the country. The hope is that they will put their efforts elsewhere. As long as protesters remain, proceeds are accumulating against them and shared between the Wisconsin Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin Foundation.
The very clinics the protesters are trying to keep women from will be making funds, because of the protesters, to keep providing the services they are against.
If you want to make a pledge for women and help put a stop to the lifers harassing tactics, I have included the link below, to visit their website.