Hostile attitudes toward pro-life activists have intensified to the point of flagrant harassment in the past year.
An article from the National Catholic Register highlighted the recent attacks on pro-life advocates who pray and council women outside abortion clinics.
Some Catholic groups have experienced targeted harassment from pro-abortion activists during their prayer vigils. Father Matthew Rader told the newspaper about one such event Oct. 6 at the Capital Care abortion facility in Toledo, Ohio.
Rader said abortion activists counter protested by playing “suggestive” music at a high volume while they tried to conduct a religious service.
Other protesters took it upon themselves to stand next to pro-life activists as they knelt in prayer with signs that said, “Kneel if you support abortion,” according to the report.
Sue Thayer, a former Planned Parenthood employee who is now pro-life, told the National Catholic Register that she thinks abortion activists have become more hostile since Donald Trump became president.
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“Bold is one thing, but they’re actually aggressive and obnoxious. … Their signs will literally say ‘f— you,’ and they have no sense of how to disagree without being unkind,” Thayer said.
Some attacks also have ventured to the blatantly violent. In August, a Missouri man faced charges for allegedly pointing a rifle at a pro-life advocate outside an abortion facility in Granite City. In October, a pro-life advocate was taken to the hospital after a man punched him to the ground outside a Planned Parenthood in Naples, Florida. A viral video also showed a Toronto man roundhouse-kicking a pro-life woman to the face after arguing with her about abortion.
This aggression from pro-abortion demonstrators also has been seen at the March for Life in Washington, D.C. Jeanne Mancini, president of the March, said crews taking down equipment after the 2017 march were spit on and harassed by abortion activists with the Women’s March. She said some tried to put graffiti on the March’s signs and attempted to destroy their equipment.
In response, Mancini said the 2019 March for Life will have more security.
“You can’t not do what’s right because people are being angry, vicious or vitriolic. We’ve been marching for 46 years. We’ve marched in blizzards. We march because of the human-rights abuse of abortion,” Mancini told the news outlet.
Some believe that the increasing hostility signals a desperation for attention from the pro-abortion movement.
“I think the pro-abortion movement recognized that we’re at a time right now where things are not going well in their direction,” Rader said. “There’s a realization that things are changing, and there’s a fear for survival and existence.”
LifeNews has documented dozens of incidents of vandalism, harassment and other targeting of pro-lifers in the past year.