Anti-Abortion Fervor Spreads to the U.K.
In an example of globalism at its finest, anti-choice advocates across the Atlantic are using tried-and-true U.S. tactics to intimidate women seeking abortions. The British Pregnancy Advisory Service, the country’s largest abortion provider, told the Guardian that it’s facing a “new era” in terms of anti-choice mobilization after Texas-based antiabortion group 40 Days for Life was accused of filming women coming in and out of its London clinic this week.
Robert Colquhoun, the campaign director of 40 Days for Life’s London campaign, told the AP that the group did not mean to film people entering and leaving the BPAS clinic — it’s just that some of its members were using cameras to film pedestrians who were hassling them. (Hmm, they’re not fans of public heckling? Imagine that!) “It’s totally unfounded to say we want to intimidate women,” Colquhoun said. “We are there to pray and to show there is love in the community out there.” A BPAS spokesperson said the activists refused to stop filming outside the clinic even after being asked. The incident comes only a few days after a 27-year-old man admitted to hacking the BPAS’ website and stealing almost 10,000 database records. First hacking, now filming — 40 Days For Life is definitely on track to win this year’s International “Most Concerned About Babykillers” award!
British abortion advocates say the new rash of aggressive tactics stem from the actions of a group of socially conservative lawmakers that were recently elected to the House of Commons. One politician, for example, proposed a law that would bar abortion providers from advising women on whether to end their pregnancies — the bill was unsuccessful, but pro-choicers say that kind of rhetoric has attracted global attention to their clinics like never before. Although BPAS has shied away from “U.S. pro-choice” efforts like clinic escorts in the past, the organization now feels the need to beef up security, and also plans to meet with the Department of Health to discuss the rising anti-abortion activism.