Missouri Caveman Todd Akin Arrested in 1987 With Radical Anti-Abortion Group
It’s easy to laugh at Todd Akin’s ridiculous caveman views, but Akin and the deranged anti-choice fanatics he associates with are really not a laughing matter; they’re deadly serious and willing to break laws: Todd Akin Arrested on May 9, 1987 With Radical Anti-Abortion Group.
We learned from a public records request that Akin was arrested on May 9, 1987 in St. Louis. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch covered the protest and reported the following day that police “arrested 30 anti-abortion protesters” for blocking “the front doors of Reproductive Health Services” while about “50 anti-abortion activists picketed two clinics” in St. Louis County. The Post-Dispatch quoted the spokesman for the protesters, John Ryan, who said the actions “were in honor of Mother’s Day.”
At the time, Ryan was head of the Pro-Life Direct Action League. He and his organization were among those sued by the National Organization for Women in 1986, which sought to “stop what it called a nationwide conspiracy to close abortion clinics.” “We believe there is a reign of terror going on,” said Eleanor Smeal, then president of NOW. She labeled Ryan - who had been “arrested almost 350 times” by then - a “terrorist.”
This is who Akin chose to get involved with in 1987 - and it gets worse. Ryan was pushed out as head of the Pro-Life Direct Action League around September 1987 and replaced by an aggressive, fundamentalist leader, Tim Dreste. Dreste affiliated the group with Randall Terry’s radical Operation Rescue the following summer. This is the same Randall Terry who later said of abortion providers, “When I, or people like me are running the country, you’d better flee, because we will find you, we will try you, and we’ll execute you.”
Dreste shared a jail cell with Terry in September 1988 and returned to St. Louis under orders to break with the Catholic-dominated Pro-Life Direct Action League. Just one month later, Akin appeared at an event for Dreste’s new group, Whole Life Ministries.
The Post-Dispatch reported on October 29 that Akin, who was elected days later to public office, “spoke to about 35 anti-abortion activists” planning to block clinic doors the next day. He said, “As far as I am concerned, you are the freedom fighters of America.” “My hat is off to you,” he continued.
The article identified Dreste as director of Whole Life Ministries, “a new anti-abortion group in St. Louis.” “We’re going to tell her we’re not going to allow her to kill her baby,” he said. Dreste made clear that protesters would block the clinic doors and refuse police orders to move. “We will tell (police) we will obey God’s law before we obey man’s law.” Sound familiar?