NOW President Speaks at ‘Freedom' Kick-Off Rally | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

NOW President Speaks at ‘Freedom' Kick-Off Rally

[Posted by NOW] Please join the MS Reproductive Freedom Coalition for Reproductive Freedom Summer: Providing a Peaceful Presence, Jackson, Miss., for a week of events to show support for reproducitve freedom and the only clinic in the state. July 14, welcome party at Hal & Mal's: silent auction, voter registration, local entertainment. July 15-22, 2006. Kick- off rally on Sat. July 15, in Smith Park 12-2 pm. Kim Gandy, president of National Organization for Women will be speaking along with local activists.
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Previous Comments

ID
106602
Comment

I would suggest this press organization take a good look at its own news reporting skills before constantly bashing the CL. I don't care much for the CL either, but no news organization should be a sponsor of such a political event as this. So much for fair and balanced. I won't visit this site anymore since you have stated where you stand on such a huge issue. Good luck JFP.

Author
News_Hound
Date
2006-07-14T14:52:01-06:00
ID
106603
Comment

We sponsor all sorts of events, "news hound." And our paper is on the record as in favor of abortion rights, although other viewpoints on the topic are welcome on our site and in our paper. Take care.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-14T15:00:32-06:00
ID
106604
Comment

Ladd-me so happy you took care of that. I was about to get mean. And, its Friday afternoon, NO ONE wants to be mean on Friday afternoon. ;)

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-14T15:18:53-06:00
ID
106605
Comment

Very true. BTW, "crappy" is sitting in my lap typing an e-mail right now. Keep an eye out. (That is sure to confuse folks, eh?)

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-14T15:23:58-06:00
ID
106606
Comment

Did Brian tell you that Jack the Cat plays fetch? Big breaking news story there I think. We love him. To pieces.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-07-14T15:25:11-06:00
ID
106607
Comment

"Fair and balanced"? What kind of lamebrained slogan is-- oh, right. And it's not as if the C-L hasn't also demonstrated where it stands, by covering only the Operation Save America stuff and largely ignoring the pro-choice events taking place in the same week. Flip Benham comes to Jackson and it's a page one story. Kim Gandy, the friggin' president of NOW, comes to Jackson and the Ledge doesn't even care to mention the fact. I think that speaks volumes. Donna, may I say for the record that I am extremely proud that the JFP has sponsored this event. You rock. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-14T15:25:41-06:00
ID
106608
Comment

Ladd-I've talked about that cat to SEVERAL people since I saw him. EB asked me how I got out of there without him the other day seeing as how he's so effin' cute and you kept "selling" him to me. ;) She said, "Jesus, I bet that was hard. That's like shopping drunk. I'd have a new cat right now... And some new jeans." I told her I stood firm so I could think about it. ;)

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-14T15:30:09-06:00
ID
106609
Comment

*sigh* Bad time for me, eh? :) I'm surprised the CL doesn't report both sides, to stir things up and create controversy. I'm not liking this "We're just home folks" newspaper. That'd be the Hedermans.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2006-07-14T15:31:02-06:00
ID
106610
Comment

He needs you, Ali. He's sleeping in a box at night in our bathroom. And he's turning into one of the sweetest kittens I've ever seen. Even sweeter than the day you met him. ;-)

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-14T15:34:01-06:00
ID
106611
Comment

As if she somehow KNEW that we were discussing usurping her reign as the only feline in the house, Fatty just barfed in the corner of the living room. And now, I have turned a thread about a Pro-Choice rally into one about cat's barfing. The Pro-Lifer's would be so proud. I actually am attending this event. Because I'm MEAN and I like to yell at people. ;)

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-14T15:34:04-06:00
ID
106612
Comment

Yeah, I'll be at the rally, too. Wouldn't miss it. And the parties tonight, health-permitting. The Clarion-Ledger is scared of its shadow. No question. And, yes, Tom, all "fair and balanced™" means in today's media world is damn-biased-but-pretending-we're-not. I'm all about honesty, even in the media. It's time for Mississippi to grow up, media-wise, and join a larger world in which all sorts of issues are discussed and different opinions are loudly held. We've been saturated with one point of view, and fear of challenging it, for way too long. We are an "alternative" to that, and some people just don't like the changes they see happening. In the new Mississippi, you can have varying opinions and express them.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-14T15:37:39-06:00
ID
106613
Comment

IG, for what it's worth, the main thing that made a pro-choice activist out of me was reading about the situation in El Salvador, where an abortion ban (with an up to 30-year prison sentence attached) can't even prevent abortions from taking place--because there are plenty of medicines women can take on their own to induce them--but is doing a great deal to ensure that abortions are (a) not performed under medical supervision and (b) are performed later in the pregnancy than they otherwise would be. If Operation Annoy America and company had their way, that's exactly what the United States would be like: A place where women have to document their pregnancies and miscarriages, having the government involved in every tiny detail of their reproductive lives. My personal preference, as I have said many times as a pro-choice activist, is to see abortion as we know it rendered obsolete--and I think the best way we can accomplish this goal is by universal access to contraception including Plan B (which prevents pregnancy), and by providing easy access to RU-486 (which terminates pregnancies for up to 64 days). As my friend Michelle likes to say, nobody is out there going "I'm going to get a bikini wax and then go have an abortion." I have it on good authority that an abortion is much more unpleasant than a root canal, and I know it's tied in with a huge amount of social stigma to boot. I'd like to see it vanish. But the folks who want to "ban" abortion wouldn't--they are focused exclusively on the goal of promoting abstinence by punishing women for having sex. It's frustrating. The satirical title of (the awesome) Katha Pollitt's new book, Virginity or Death!, is a good summary of much of the "pro-life" position. Hell, there was even a serious attempt by several "pro-family" groups to block the HPV cervical cancer vaccine--simply because HPV is sexually transmitted, and they felt that the remote possibility of cervical cancer was a huge boost to their abstinence campaigns. Sickos. Doesn't surprise me a bit that the Ledge would rather give them publicity, and completely ignore NOW. Not when their editorial board meetings are "NO GURLZ ALLOWED" events. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-14T23:12:18-06:00
ID
106614
Comment

Operation Save America will be in Fondren Sat. July 15th. Anyone interested should join. They were at County Line Fri, but the cops came and ended the rally. According to wlbt, some were "Shocked" at pictures of aborted children. Funny that they never considered what actually takes place in these clinics.

Author
Shrute2
Date
2006-07-15T02:20:47-06:00
ID
106615
Comment

Considering that over 90% of abortions are performed during the first trimester, and the clinic only performs abortions up to 16 weeks, I seriously doubt that Roy McMillan's graphic posters of mangled late-term fetuses have anything at all to do with what happens in the clinic. The problem with this kind of "message" violence is that it cuts both ways--you have your photos of mangled fetuses, the antiwar groups have their photos of mangled civilian casualties, and we can wave around our hundreds of square feet of blood and brains and guts until we have the whole city vomiting on their dashboards. I believe in free speech, but either we have content-neutral indecency statutes or we don't. If we don't, then everybody's violence--and hopefully a little profanity and nudity, to break up the monotamy--is fair game. If it isn't, then abortion protesters shouldn't get special treatment--because that amounts to a content-based restriction on people with other, equally protected opinions. At any rate, I don't think there's any reason why six-year-old kids should have to be involuntarily traumatized by this stuff--especially when it doesn't even have anything to do with what's going on in the clinic. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-15T05:12:25-06:00
ID
106616
Comment

Tom, I'm still on the fence, but I'm absolutely with you on Plan B. That's why I've got to support NOW. As much as it SHOCKS my church friends. (Because that's what I live for at the end of the day.) I had an unplanned pregnancy, and it was only THEN that I learned of all the women in my life who had abortions. People who's white upstanding citizen daddy's had driven them to Memphis. And they were so sad and so guilt-ridden. So I chose to put some energy into volunteering at a Crisis Pregnancy Center. It had an abortion recovery counseling type thing that I loved. But they never really let me actually talk to the women in crisis. And then one day the lady in charge casually mentioned that they supported organizations, you know, like the ones that have fetus pictures in the face of already shamed women, and I had to just leave. So now I'm waiting for a Planned Parenthood :)

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-07-15T10:37:39-06:00
ID
106617
Comment

Emily, I agree that abortion is hurtful pyschologically to many women who have had them and that's why I think Tom is right on the money - why not work to create a world where women almost never have to make that choice. His ideas for how to create this world are much more sane to me than what the pro-lifers offer.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-15T11:12:54-06:00
ID
106618
Comment

Last three posts are the type I like to read on abortion. I rarely debate it. Its very polarized and the two sides have such different philosophies and belief systems (I'm talking about the really committed ones) that I'm not going to change anyone's mind. I have no use for the Roy McMillan types. His rhetoric is over the top and when he started refusing to condemn violence and murder, he went to the bottom of my list. I don't guess Christ telling Peter to put away his sword and healing the guard's ear meant anything to him. However, I have no use for the militant types I ran into in law school who believed in abortion up until the baby was born. Who I feel sorry for is the woman who chooses to have one. Too often she is in no man's land. The pro-choice militants tell her that she should feel no regrets, there is nothing wrong with what she did, etc. Yes, a mother terminating her pregnancy, aborting a fetus, killing a baby, whatever you wish to call it depending on your view, is perfectly natural, normal, and there is no reason to have any feelings of guilt or remorse whatsoever. Then there is the militants on the other side who call them babykillers, fallen women, etc. VERY supportive and Christian as well. I've had more than one friend that had an abortion and it affected every one of them. There is one book I read called Forbidden Grief that dealt with this issue. I would recommend it to anyone who had one. I gave it to several friends and they all said it really helped them deal with what they had done in the past. By the way, notice I did not get into if abortion is right or wrong. That was intentional.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-15T12:27:07-06:00
ID
106619
Comment

I love this too Jimmy. One of my friend, whose dad MADE HER at sixteen, remembers that "We Didn't Start the Fire" was playing on the radio. She still can't listen to that song. Another friend lived vicariously, for a very long time, through me and my son. We were pregnant at about the same time and would have delivered at about the same time, and she still sends him gifts in the mail sometimes. I did go to a pregancy center when I found out. In absolute denial fear. And they forced me to watch a babykiller movie. By best friend at the time called and cussed them out for it. I was just in shock and silent. She is normally a very quiet Chritian woman, but that they forced their politics on me in a time I was so emotionally alone, it made her head spin. I've got lots of stories. And that's what I'm more interested in knowing.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-07-15T12:55:02-06:00
ID
106620
Comment

ok, TH, I am calling you out on something. Several profamily groups were against a vaccine for cervical cancer? WHO? I got into this debate at the time with someone who made the same claim and every article (and he is a lawyer) he linked me to NEVER mentioned who the groups were. Ms Ladd would've slammed them for that kind of sloppy journalism. It just said "various pro-family groups" or something to that effect. So I ask, who exactly was making those statements because I have yet to see any Christian groups come out against a vaccine for cervical cancer.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-15T14:17:55-06:00
ID
106621
Comment

Extremists are always the enemy to a good debate.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2006-07-15T15:11:14-06:00
ID
106622
Comment

agreed.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-15T15:17:18-06:00
ID
106623
Comment

They didn't actually "come out against it". They supported its availability but urged that parents have to right to decide whether their child was given the vaccination as opposed to making it a mandatory vaccination before they could attend school. I think two of them were the Family Research Council and Focus on the Family. I'm sure the AFA had something to do with that as well. If you'd like to ask them I bet you could find a few of them hanging down across the street from Que Sera right now. ;)

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-15T15:34:21-06:00
ID
106624
Comment

Abortion is just so tough. I agree with Tom, that I want to see it made "obsolete". But I stay out of the politics, because I believe this is something that will change only as individuals think about it and examine their own consciences. The big problem is that we really need abortion rights, because the consequences of now having them can be so bad (like Tom described in Venezuela). But, in order to have them, we have to accept logically tenuous ideas about the non-humanity of the fetus. Because IF the fetus is human, we just can't do this. Would we legalize the enthanasia of unwanted infants? Would not fight to find other ways to remedy the problem, that don't involve killing our infant children? Essentailly, we rely on our uncertainty about when (and how ) a fetus becomes human to build the edifice of abortion rights on. But it is an edifice with a very shaky foundation. Consider that, if the need for abortion rights were not an issue, and you were just asked "it is more rational to assume that a fetus is human, than to assume that it isn't", then what is your answer? THEN, factor abortion back in. Does your answer change, or become more ambiguous? Why? My sister and I have had several discussions about abortion throughtout the years. Her position is that she does believe very strongly that all fetuses are human (she has childern of her own now, but she believed that even before she had children). However, even though the fetuses are human, we must still have abortion rights because we simply can't take care of them all. I , of course, I love and repect my sister. But that position frigtens me. Because she is saying, in no uncertain terms, that we must be permitted to cull one population of persons to improve the quality of life of the rest of us. Note that this is only true because she says this with the full belief that fetuses are human. If the didn't believe that then, of course, she's not advocating the need for any person's death. And, in my mind, if we arrive there as a society, at a place where we accept the systematic killing of certain people so that others can have a better life, then we have sacrifificed something very central to our humanity.

Author
GLB
Date
2006-07-15T17:11:17-06:00
ID
106625
Comment

GLB-I ask you this... I was watching a documentary the other day about a Lesbian couple who used a surrogate to have a child. The baby was born premature at either 24-26 weeks, can't remember. It was a "micro-preemie" and spent six months in the hospital. But, they saved him. The child is profoundly retarded, almost blind, deaf, has a feeding tube, and is on constant oxygen. He was revived as an infant around five times. Meaning he DIED five times. In the documentary they state they love this child with all of their heart, but they wanted to make the film so that people understood the decision they were making when they chose to save a 24 weeker. Do you think that child should have been saved? As it is, the State of California pays all child-care, physical therapy and medical care for micro-preemies. They are considering automatically "disabled" at birth and get all the services therein. I think at the age of six months they started calling him the Three Million Dollar Baby. So, we get into a fuzzy area here if you are conservative and fighting to save all life. You are essentially fight against yourself. The fight for life, at times, leads to supporting massive free social services. How does that make sense? The woman in the film said this statement that made a lot of sense to me, "We live in a world of manufactured disability." Due to our inability to accept DEATH as a natural part of life, we actually create populations dependent on major medical care, medications, and a host of other social services. This is very interesting to me. I think it begs the question...Is ALL life really precious? Is there a time when things should be let go...? And, I don't say this is support of all manner of abortions...I actually believe in some restrictions on abortions. I say this because I think the fevered Pro-Life movement is a symptom of a much larger disease. We are all running scared from death. THAT is where I'd like this discussion to go.

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-15T17:30:36-06:00
ID
106626
Comment

Mothers in other parts of the animal kingdom kill their children at birth if they know that they will not be able to provide for them. It is for society to look at what would make a woman feel that she cannot bring a child into the world at this time. Or look at how women can prevent getting pregnant if that is not their plan. Educating how to plan. I once saw pro-lifers protesting an anti-death penalty vigil because they were upset that we were not recognizing the connection between the forms of "state sponsored killing. Why can't they recognize the connection between trying to birth fetus and trying to protect and care for the children we have. Life is precious. Our sadness is precious. Sometimes it is for one to die. Are we saving fetus because we cannot stand to see them not given a chance to become a self-conscious individual or because death is now seen as an unnatural event...an enemy of life instead of a part of our humanity?

Author
daniel johnson
Date
2006-07-15T18:01:44-06:00
ID
106627
Comment

Ali, that is not the same thing. Tom said they were against the vaccine. Not the government mandating the vaccine for kids. However, I hardly find it to be pro-choice for the government to be mandating that children (which is legally what they are) have to get the vaccine when it is the parent's responsibility. A government mandate is a government mandate whether it is saying a 16 year old female has to get a shot for an STD or can not get an abortion.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-15T19:29:28-06:00
ID
106628
Comment

That HPV thing is a huge can of worms for me. It's been pumped as a STD vaccine, which it is essentially, but people get this stigma in their heads about it, and the fact of the matter is LOTS of people have it and are asymptomatic. It's very understudied. I have a doctor friend, and at one time in med school, she had a journal where they had found a pocket of HPV outbreak from women and tanning beds. Don't know what happened with that research, or if it was proved from tanning beds. I also remember reading that 90% of the population has a strain of the virus. That seems high, so I could be wrong. But "conservatives" were saying that we can't give it to such young girls because it will be giving them a freedom to have sex, when the fact of the matter is, we just have to give it to them young. These girls could wait until their wedding night, and still get HPV. Then the HPV could or could not cause cancer. It's just a link. So the promotion for vaccine against cervical cancer is also strong. I bet someone knows more about those numbers. Unsure how involved the AFA was, I just know I get the freaking emails (you know the "they're trying to take our prayer away!) and had one forwarded to me warning me of how they are trying to force our kids to get a vaccine. Didn't read it, deleted before my head spun, so I don't know if it was against the vaccine totally or parental decision required. Since I just had a blood test for SYPHILIS so I could get married, I don't get why this is such a big deal. My kid has NO CLUE why he got shots, he just hated them.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-07-15T19:51:13-06:00
ID
106629
Comment

Searched AFA and found no action alerts. So I'm not thinking it was from there.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-07-15T19:58:39-06:00
ID
106630
Comment

As far as the news_hound comment, PEACE. As long as you : don't pratice unsafe-sex/have sex and get pregnant, you have nothing to worry about. Some folks are unable to appreciate diverse beliefs and tolerance. BTW, we had over 300 attendees at the rally........

Author
Jackson Area NOW
Date
2006-07-15T22:48:25-06:00
ID
106631
Comment

i have felt more of a pro-choice presence in town this week than pro-life. Just in general, as far as presence goes. (i.e. signs, people passing out fliers, conversation...) Of course i live in my own little world and all...

Author
daniel johnson
Date
2006-07-16T00:21:43-06:00
ID
106632
Comment

Remember the guy who propositioned for a victim over the internet...someone who wanted to die gave themselves for murder to someone else. What if people could suddenly get bionic arms and there was a rush of people having their real limbs cut off and bionic limbs attached...visit: http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2000/monkeys-1206.html Can you imagine the controversy?

Author
daniel johnson
Date
2006-07-16T00:28:01-06:00
ID
106633
Comment

It was a delightful rally. I'm stoked. A definite peak experience for me. I was there, and I was at the party at Hal & Mal's, and both rocked. Thanks for making it good for me. Sorry I seemed to vanish; had to make a phone call re: what we had discussed right before you left, and the men's restroom was the only place quiet enough, and of course you couldn't really have followed me there, so you must have figured I'd bailed. I actually ended up staying about another 45 minutes, listening to the fantastic music and hanging out with some of the truly wonderful people that your hard work has given me the opportunity to meet. So thank you. I love you to pieces, and I look forward to working hard alongside you in the years ahead. Seeing you work yourself tired and hoarse on this issue is an inspiration to me. I, too, am now tired and hoarse. My vision is bleary, my knees hurt, and I'm mildly sunburned (though non-painfully; I don't burn, or tan, very easily). But I have spent the day surrounded and embraced and in solidarity with friends both old and new, and I think y'all have me for the long haul. I also shook hands with Flip Benham at the rally and told him with a smile that I'd been homeschooled. I didn't spit on anybody. I didn't kick dirt at anybody. I did hold up my sign to help cover up some of the mangled fetus photos, and I did help shout down the anti- chants, but I did all this with no malice. I don't see the anti- position as an evil position; just a deluded one. If one believes with absolute certainty in a certain idea of the world, where if one does not live a certain way then the society is subjected to divine punishment, then it becomes feasible to support the otherwise inexplicable anti- position. There are anti-s in my family whom I love dearly. But they're completely wrong about this issue, and they're wrong about this issue because they have a deluded, pre-17th century view of the world. I get very angry at these people sometimes, but when I'm in my right mind I don't and can't hate any of y'all, if any of you on the other side of the fence might be reading this. I just wish that you were gentler to the vulnerable women who go to these clinics, with the children who have to see those graphic fetus placards, and that you had less influence in the political process. That's all. Oh, and that maybe--just maybe--that you'd change your minds one day. But I realize that's probably too much to ask. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-16T00:29:44-06:00
ID
106634
Comment

Er, that last post was directed at the lovely young woman who posts as Jackson Area NOW. But you're pretty cool too, Daniel. ;o) And agreed on feeling more of a pro-choice presence in this city in recent years. There has been a definite tipping point--polls and votes aside, I'm just not seeing the level of local anti-choice support that I used to see. At the hearings on the abortion ban, pro-choicers routinely outnumbered antis-. This should not be happening, in theory, in Mississippi--but it is, and I like it. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-16T00:32:04-06:00
ID
106635
Comment

And to Jimmy, Emily, Ali: I could be mistaken, but I'm pretty certain I read early opposition to the HPV vaccine from actual conservative groups. Remind me to check on this when I'm a little less tired--six hours of rallying in the hot sun (including a few hours of marching), followed by four and a half hours of partying, have left me physically and emotionally drained. I do not think that I'll be up very late tonight. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-16T00:35:39-06:00
ID
106636
Comment

Tom those stories such as the one in the wash post all said that but when you dug into the story there was never an actual citation to a group or quote by someone.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-16T15:17:49-06:00
ID
106637
Comment

I'll try to answer Ali. But, like I said, it's difficult. This issue depresses me, but I was encouraged to read your post just because it shows so much honest thought. With regard to saving life at all costs, you have raised anoter big issue -- a related one, but a different one. Our technology has enabled us to save people who would otherwise have died, although often at tremendous expense. So is there a line to be drawn? That's big sandwich. But I guess there are two things that come to mind. First, individuals are permitted to opt out of treatments if they choose to just allow themselves to die. So those with the means to speak for themselves can choose not to have their lives prolonged. Second, the question is not whether or not all human life is sacred -- the question is, what happens if there aren't enough resouces available to preserve these lives? And I think that's a different question. With regard to the preemie baby -- yes, i think you have to try to save the baby. I know it is expensive, but consider that, in our society, we often commit to great expense in order to ensure that our ideals are upheld. Consider the expense of defending known murderers in court. And now here's a question. What if the baby's parents said they didn't want to preserve the baby's life, that they just wanted it to be allowed to die as painlessly as possible. Do they have the legal right to do that? I ask because I really don't know. But IF they don't have the legal right to do that, is it not, on the surface, a bit strange that they would have had the legal right to have the abortion (if the surrogate mom consented)?

Author
GLB
Date
2006-07-16T15:18:37-06:00
ID
106638
Comment

Ali, one more thing. I'm not really a conservative. I lean conservative on a lot of fiscal issues, but all politics is pragmatic to me -- I have no political principles that I would feel bad about violating. My principles are philosophical or religious in origin. Basically, if it works, do it. So I don't have any qualms about advicating posiitons that aren't conservative. And that is the only easy question you asked me, so I'm glad I didn't forget to answer it.

Author
GLB
Date
2006-07-16T15:23:29-06:00
ID
106639
Comment

I would like to take this time to thank the pro-choice supporters who have come accross the country to aid the MS Reproductive Freedom Coalition with MRFS: Common Ground, A. R. A., The World Can't Wait, Drive Out the Bush Regime, and the Radical Women contigentcy. Our strong allies did a wonderful job this morning keeping the anti's from attaking the UU Church in Jackson. Much respect!!!!

Author
Jackson Area NOW
Date
2006-07-16T17:37:04-06:00
ID
106640
Comment

Do they have the legal right to do that? I ask because I really don't know. GLB: To answer your question, it was once perfectly legal not to make any effort to save the life of a child with Down's syndrome. Google "Down Syndrome Starvation", or the case of John Pearson, or the one I'll always remember, the Baby Doe case of Indiana in 1980. Here's a list of the fight to even have Down's Syndrome called by it's proper name, and not Mongoloid Monsters. It includes references to the court cases involved. I think we've moved past this dark chapter, but we have to keep vigilant.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2006-07-16T17:42:18-06:00
ID
106641
Comment

That IS another can of worms. If you've ever worked as a full time aide or have been a parent of a person who must have aides it is at best a strange situation. one person's entire life becomes dependent upon others: for feeding, bodily needs, everything. I hope eventually medical science will solve so many of these paralysis and nervous system diseases or that we'll have extremely sophisticaed robots to perform these tasks. As someone who has done this work before I can say it is extremely intense work. For parents, even more so.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-16T18:35:01-06:00
ID
106642
Comment

BTW did anyone see the C-L coverage on the rally? It made front page but they made the photo speak the story of the "pro-lifer denied access to the rally" instead of pro-choicers denied the right to free assembly due to the pro-life side calling in a bomb threat. Too bad their blinkers won't allow a real story to emerge. Who is denying who in this story?

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-16T18:36:33-06:00
ID
106643
Comment

I will classify laurel's post the same as the state/ole miss fans who constantly complain about the coverage in the paper and are never pleased. The mention on the front page prominently of the bomb threat did not make the pro-life side look good at all to say the least. However, it the coverage is not 100 percent in your favor, I guess you have a reason to complain even if the other side is made to look bad.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-16T19:19:47-06:00
ID
106644
Comment

Come on! Everyone knows the paper is full of Old Miss grads who bias the sports page in favor of UM! :D It's obvious!

Author
Ironghost
Date
2006-07-16T22:33:15-06:00
ID
106645
Comment

I know the girl that wrote that article in CL about the rally and I thought it was slanted as well. Bless her little heart. She's like twenty and has lived here a month. I almost feel sorry for her...but not really.

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-16T22:54:04-06:00
ID
106646
Comment

Ali, you know how bad the editing is there. Just read Chris Joyner's work and see what is allowed to pass for writing. Its really a joke there. Not really her fault if she is not being taught right. Having said that, there was nothing slanted about the headlines. In fact, it was pretty damning of the pro life side as making them out to be bombthrowers.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-16T23:27:38-06:00
ID
106647
Comment

I couldn't detect a slant, but then I didn't read the article really carefully. The bomb threat definitely does make their side look like terrorists, which is exactly why I believe OSA probably had nothing to do with the scheme; I suspect it was a lone wingnut who was just stupid enough to think he was doing them a favor. In any case, their media cycle taking a nosedive, fast. On Saturday it was the bomb scare, then they spent Sunday morning harassing people at local churches. What amuses me more right now is the reference to arrests at an "Episcopalian" church. "Episcopal" is the adjective; "Episcopalian" is the noun. St. James' doesn't actually do anything having to do with abortion, but they're known as one of the more gay-friendly churches in the area, and only about half of OSA's stuff seems to have anything to do with abortion; at least two sides of the fetusmobile (the back and the right side, if I'm not mistaken) are taken up with anti-gay foolishness. So in other words, unless there's something I don't know about St. James', they've shifted priorities from the not yet born to the not yet sexually repressed. Oh, and folks: Reproductive Freedom Summer '06 did finally get me to Hal & Mal's... Nice place. I don't know why I ever avoided it. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-17T00:37:41-06:00
ID
106648
Comment

I just read the whole story. Not so much a slant, just badly written and organized. The story jumped around. Abortion protestors dealth with bomb scare? Um, I thought the pro abortion rally got the bomb scare. It stated the positions of both sides, it was just badly organized. If you read the first half it looks pro life but the second half looks pro choice. No slant, just bad writing.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-17T00:45:15-06:00
ID
106649
Comment

I heard that on one of the Saturday night WLBT reports, they described the rally thusly: "At the pro-life rally, some anti-abortion protesters showed up..." Hard to tell what's reporter bias and what's bad writing and what can be traced more meaningfully to the editorial slant of the paper, which I would imagine is oriented towards whatever the majority of white suburbanites (who make up the majority of the C-L readership) want. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-17T01:00:57-06:00
ID
106650
Comment

I will say that I chatted with the older C-L reporter at the rally, and she struck me as very friendly and fairly bright. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-17T01:01:46-06:00
ID
106651
Comment

TH the editorial page of the CL is pro-choice. And chances are most of the reporters are as well.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-17T07:59:25-06:00
ID
106652
Comment

I didn't know the editorial page of CL is pro-choice - Jimmy, is that based on past columns, or? I guess the reason the article felt very slanted to me was the choice to use a pregnant pro-lifer as the main photo subject (in center of frame) surrounded by police and a man, showing her "trials" as she tried to demonstrate. They should have picked a photo that showed the trials of the the people who spent 6 hours in the hot sun due to the fact that their cars were blocked off by cops working on the bomb threat. I felt the use of that photo made the piece feel like it was her story & that didn't seem fair. to me anyway. appreciate all the comments, interesting as ususal...

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T08:23:39-06:00
ID
106653
Comment

sorry, I find the complaints about how they wrote their coverage to be pretty nitpicky. There are two sides to everything and they are going to show what they think are both sides and if I'm selling newspapers, that photois an attention getter. and yes, whenever an abortion editorial has appeared in CL its been in favor of it.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-17T08:39:29-06:00
ID
106654
Comment

well, yes, using justification of "what sells" is a favorite of the media. But I think we can agree to disagree on this one.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T09:20:17-06:00
ID
106655
Comment

Tom-Looks like the guy with the fetus-mobile got arrested.

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-17T09:27:04-06:00
ID
106656
Comment

I will also mention that article is very Pro-Pro-Choice. So, I feel better now. ;)

Author
Lori G
Date
2006-07-17T09:31:39-06:00
ID
106657
Comment

wrong laurel. Putting bombscare or bombthreat does not slant it towards the pro life side. if anything, the opposite is true. The first thought most people will have upon seeing that is a pro-lifer phoned in a bomb threat. That sets the tone right there. You know what they say about first impressions.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-07-17T09:55:41-06:00
ID
106658
Comment

wrong what? that we can disagree? that's kind of lame. I like to disagree sometimes, it's better than shouting. I still don't find your argument convincing. I think I understand your point. I just don't agree that just because the article mentions the bomb threat it necessarily creates a negative impression of the pro-life movement. For one, the article makes it seem like both sides are "hewing to the course in the face of a bomb threat" which I thought was weird - I mean, it's not as if the pro-choicers set that bomb threat up. They were the ones trying to stick to the course when their rally was thrown completely off. So why make it sound like the pro-lifers are also valiantly sticking to their course in the face of the threat. Really I thought that was crap reporting. And you can't change my mind unless you say something different than what you have already said. I also definitely still think that using that photo skews the reporting of the events of that day. It just didn't sit right with me and I was there at the rally. But seriously, you don't need to keep pushing your point. It's okay with me if you don't see it my way.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T10:08:51-06:00
ID
106659
Comment

Maybe it's better to move on to more interesting topics related to the events at hand. I think I've had enough of this debate, Jimmy. Thanks, Laurel

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T10:11:58-06:00
ID
106660
Comment

I'll be honest. My first thought at news of the bomb scare was that a pro-lifer called it in. And the only reasoning I can come up with: pro-lifers have been behind bombs before. How many clinics have been blasted and how many innocent people (doctors, nurses, receptionists, etc) have been killed in this war? And that's what it is, a war. The pro-lifers, as a general rule, come across as "eye for an eye" type people. I refuse to be a part of that. And, those posters? It broke my heart to see that an 11 year old girl is quoted in a C-L article as saying she's been involved with these sorts of rallies since the age of six. We will avoid these rallies with our children: they are 7 and 8 and I don't want them to see those kinds of pictures yet. They're just not old enough.

Author
Lady Havoc
Date
2006-07-17T11:46:57-06:00
ID
106661
Comment

You're right. It's not hard to associate "pro-lifers" -- the militant ones, often associated with Operation Rescue -- with bombs. That's just history and fact. They are willing to kill to supposedly protect life. Intriguing way to convince people. Of course, it's not everyone who is against abortion, but the radical loudmouths. Unfortunately, though, too many people enable them to get away with it by "supporting" their efforts. It's sad. I was there, and not terribly convinced at first that there was a bomb scare. It seemed at first like a police tactic to break up the rally as the pro-lifers were trying to shout it down. Things were getting tense, but manageable; the people with big fetus photos wanted to get right up on the stage, although it wasn't their rally and not their permit. It's funny: they protest out here many days of the year, but they can't stand to see the other side out there. Right before the "bomb scare," the police had just told the pro-lifers that they had to stay in the back and couldn't push up onto the stage. Therein could be one motive, but that's circumstantial. They really didn't put their best foot forward Saturday. The pro-lifers came across as the radicals, amid a peaceful rally of people of all ages and races. But I guess that's Operation Rescue's modus operandi.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T11:53:52-06:00
ID
106662
Comment

As for bias in The Clarion-Ledger, this point wasn't exactly accurate. I know, because I was (the only reporter) up and listening to the discussion between the two sides and the police: Before the bomb threat, a vocal confrontation ensued. Some pro-choice activists even tried to block anti-abortion supporters from entering the park beyond the sidewalk. From what I saw, the abortion-rights folks weren't trying to block them from entering the park; they were holding their signs in front of theirs as the anti-abortion folks tried to get up on the sides of the stage, where they didn't have a permit. The pro-choice people seemed rather trained to be peaceful and just follow them with their signs. The police warned them against pushing and shoving each other, but that seemed par for the course. But nobody tried to keep the pro-life folks from coming into the park itself. That's an unfortunate characterization. The thing that disturbed me the most was the way the police handled the "bomb scare." They suddenly moved everyone off the stage and away from the rally spot, and then all hung out casually without blocking the entrances to the park on the side that was supposedly dangerous for more than an hour. I kept trying to ask the police why they weren't securing the park if it was enough of a threat to shut down the rally, and couldn't get a straight answer. One even threatened to have me arrested because I walked into the side where they were all hanging out under the gazebo drinking bottled water with an older man in a pro-life t-shirt. The whole thing seemed shoddy at birth. This is what The Clarion-Ledger reported about that part; we'll have something more complete in this week's issue: Authorities evacuated the park and blocked off parts of downtown Jackson at 2:45 p.m. About 10 anti-abortion protesters and 150 pro-choice activists were on hand at the pro-choice rally, which began at noon. It was expected to end at 2 p.m. but ended sooner because of the bomb threat. Attendees were moved as far back as Capitol and West streets. About 20 officers are at the park. Lewis said officers received a call at 1:19 p.m. that someone had placed a suspicious package in a trash can in the park. When asked how serious the situation was, Lewis said, “This is not a dress rehearsal.” Gov. Haley Barbour was taken to a safe place, Lewis added. Smith Park is across the street from the Governor’s Mansion. You can see the timing problems from that. If it had been a bomb and had gone off in the hour-plus before the police closed off the area, we wouldn't be very happy with the incompetence of the police today, eh? They were so casual about it that I didn't believe there was really a bomb threat at first, and still couldn't swear to it.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T13:27:05-06:00
ID
106663
Comment

Donna, I agree they were casual to each other and to the anti-choice folks, but you and I experienced their attitudes first hand and wouldn't you say they were being very aggressive with us? Saying things like, "you better move over to the other side of the park right now, you'll see why in a minute." but with very nasty looks on their faces. They weren't rushing and they were being very nasty. When we asked them why they refused to answer us, just wanted us to move and not ask questions. It was weird. I agree with you, if there was a bomb how come many of the anti-choice and the police were just sitting there in the park while the pro-choice folks got pushed off the stage and to the side? That's part of why I got pissed at the C-L coverage. Also with the part you mention about the C-L saying people weren't allowed in the park when really they were in the park they just weren't being allowed onto the stage. When you pair this with that photo it begins to make more sense on why their coverage seems skewed to me.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T13:32:16-06:00
ID
106664
Comment

Yeah, the cops were nasty. It's too bad we didn't have an ACLU attorney there to back us up. Apparently (and after I caused a near-scene trying to get answers), they got off their padookuses and closed the entire park. Then, Adam said, they brought in some sort of robot to get at the alleged suitcase -- but then moved the media back to far to see once they tried to move in on it (but not before). Right, they were allowed in the park, and nobody tried to stop them from that. That's a misrepresentation. I didn't see any other reporters there until after the fracas happened. Maybe they heard it on the scanner and asked the police to tell them what happened. I dunno, but their story is incomplete at best. You make a great point about the photo. Was this really the photo they ran with the story about the pro-abortion rights rally!?! Where is the photo of the NOW president? Of the many there rallying for abortion rights? (I didn't see Sunday's Ledger.) If that was the photo they chose as the main one to go with that story, that does show bias. That wasn't ol' Flip's event.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T13:40:08-06:00
ID
106665
Comment

exactly - where is the photo of the NATIONAL president of NOW? my question exactly. no the Flip photo wasn't in Sunday's ledge. What they ran was a photo of a pregnant anti-choice activist with cops on one side of her and a pro-choice man holding a sign. the caption was along the lines of, so and so, a pro-life activist from xx place tries to get into the park to demonstrate. I'll find the actual article when I get home for better quotes.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T13:53:39-06:00
ID
106666
Comment

Laurel, hold onto the Sunday Ledge for me, wouldja?

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T13:56:10-06:00
ID
106667
Comment

sure. John'll bring it by later today

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T13:59:06-06:00
ID
106668
Comment

that is, if i still have it & i think i do.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T13:59:21-06:00
ID
106669
Comment

Where is the ACLU attorney when you need one? I just returned from the rally at the State Capitol building where we were told that because OSA had a permit for the area, that we could not have signs and had to leave the sidewalk--a public space. This was not the Capitol Police...this was JPD. We were allowed to stay there for 5-10 minutes before the horde of officers crossed the street to bark at us and push us off the sidewalk into a grassy area. Keep in mind--none of the pro-choice activists were causing any sort of disruption aside from holding signs and being present. QUITE a different story from what happened at Smith Park Saturday when OSA and McMillan were allowed to mill around in the rally WITH their signs. Also--Jimmy Hendrix--Um, I thought the pro abortion rally got the bomb scare.--you need to check your language. It was a pro-CHOICE rally.

Author
nyoung
Date
2006-07-17T14:23:23-06:00
ID
106670
Comment

That is the opposite of what they told the protesters on Saturday. Then, the police said, it was OK for the pro-life folks to be there with their signs because it was a public park. They just couldn't make contact with each other. However, there may be issues if y'all were blocking a sidewalk. Were you able to stay in the grassy area with your signs? Why don't you call Adam here (362.6121 ext. 7) and tell him what happened). And you're right; there needs to be an ACLU-designated attorney watching over these protests, for both sides, at all times. Let me see what I can find out on that front.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T14:26:47-06:00
ID
106671
Comment

now I know why we need the ACLU for protesters. this is my first protest in about 20 years. i used to think ACLU a bit annoying - I'm one of those weird liberal-ish folks who didn't mind finding out the gov was monitoring phone records. I happen to think it may have successfully defeated more than one new terrorist attack but i digress big time. the point is, being at that rally and getting shut down -- it made me feel my very liberty was on the line. i haven't felt that in USA ever, only seen on TV in places like Tinamenn where it was so bad. I know in this case it was the bomber and not the gov./police who were causing the shut down, but the actions of the police seemed sketchy to me, further bolstered by these latest reports. I asked on policeman on my way out, "Does it usually take this long for the bomb squad to get here?" First he said "No, actually, no" but then he quickly added, "Well, it depends on where they are."

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T16:05:32-06:00
ID
106672
Comment

Write an opinion piece about it for me, Laurel, and I'll run it next issue. Get it to me by the end of the week.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T16:08:58-06:00
ID
106673
Comment

my first thought is, I don't know if I have time. but I will run some ideas together on paper & see where it leads.

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T17:02:01-06:00
ID
106674
Comment

Ah, Flip Benham. The guy with nothing to do and all day to do it. It appears that he goes from controversy to controversy seeking publicity. First, it Judge Roy Moore getting shafted over the Ten Commandments: (http://www.operationsaveamerica.org/news/news/2003-09.htm) Then, Terri Schiavo: (http://operationsaveamerica.org/press/press/050331terri-schiavo-roevwade-of-euthanasia.htm) Now, he's back on the abortion trail. There's something awfully sleazy about using the name of God to get publicity for yourself or advance your career. I've heard a lot of folks complain about "race-pimps." Benham is far worse. He's a God-pimp.

Author
Curt Crowley
Date
2006-07-17T17:14:37-06:00
ID
106675
Comment

sleazy is right, curt crowley. it's nasty they came to my uncle's church on the very day they were blessing 20 families expecting children. no one invited them. god is used justifying some very strange shit in this age

Author
Izzy
Date
2006-07-17T17:22:24-06:00
ID
106676
Comment

Yes, and it's tragic. Why aren't they using their time and resources to help poor children — and educate men and women about birth control? What, you say? They don't believe in birth control, either? I get it: Woman = incubator. I'm thinking we here in Mississippi have better things to do with our time than mess around with a bunch of radicals.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-07-17T17:24:38-06:00
ID
106677
Comment

I'm thinking we here in Mississippi have better things to do with our time than mess around with a bunch of radicals. Amen, Donna. Amen. Beautifully said.

Author
Lady Havoc
Date
2006-07-17T20:36:15-06:00
ID
106678
Comment

Ali, thanks for the link. :o) That makes me feel much better about the C-L. As for Flip Benham: I was standing behind the ACLU and NOW tables for most of the rally, handing out ACLU fans and such. Guy walks up. I hand him an ACLU fan and shake his hand. "Hi! I'm Tom Head." "Hello, Tom! I'm Flip Benham." "Good to meet you! Want one of these?" "Sure!" [begins fanning himself with what he presumably does not know is an ACLU placard] "Tell me, Tom, where did you go to school?" "I was homeschooled." "Homeschooled? How on Earth did you end up here?" [I can't remember my exact response. Something to the effect of "It took a while," which was friendlier than "None of your business."] "Were your parents Christians?" "I'm sorry, Flip, but I've got to help staff the tables here. It was good to meet you!" "Same here, Tom!" [walks off continuing to fan himself with ACLU placard for 5-10 minutes] FWIW, I don't believe OSA called in a bomb threat. It would have made absolutely no sense from a PR perspective, since it screwed up their whole attempt to control the media cycle. But I don't think pro-choicers would have called it in either, because they wouldn't have wanted to disrupt the rally. Assuming there was a genuine bomb threat or something comparable, I would guess it came from a lone right-wing nut with a lot of passion and not very much sense. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-07-18T04:56:45-06:00
ID
106679
Comment

BTW, Kim Gandy, NOW president, is a Louisiana Tech graduate (yay!). Hard to believe given the socio-political climate at the school, but it's true.

Author
Philip
Date
2006-07-22T15:03:40-06:00

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