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Letter: With respect

I am writing to express concern about the buffer zone petition for the Concord Feminist Health Center (Monitor, June 2) which, because it unnecessarily keeps non-violent citizens so far away from the building, violates their First Amendment rights.

Every Friday during the school year, I went with several friends to Concord to pray in front of the clinic. Both we and the others we saw while there kept a respectful distance and were never aggressive or intimidating. The men and women entering and exiting the facility were neither harmed nor harassed while in our presence.

No matter what your views on abortion are, I would like you to consider whether this petition, because it seeks keeps peaceful assemblers 35 feet away from the clinic, is in direct opposition both to the letter and the spirit of the founding documents. I urge my fellow citizens to reflect on the issue and to contact our mayor and councilors as their consciences dictate.



Legacy Comments8

Surely these links make it understandable for members of the community to be concerned that those going in can be treated poorly or victimized: If you choose to respond, please review these links before doing so. Moreover, has there ever been a death reported at a pregnancy resource center/crisis pregnancy center? I don't think so; can you find any evidence or suspicion of that? Were the people standing outside be approached by someone wanting an alternative (which has happened before), they would be referred to the latter not-for-profits.

Furthermore, if this place really cared about its clients it wouldn't make their clients PAY for parking on the street and force them to climb up stairs to the entrance, while the employees have a parking lot in the back and can easily walk into the side entrance. It would seem that if the abortion facility was concerned about the safety and feelings of its clients, it would have them park where the center knows no permit is given to be (the side lot). In addition, why should the facility be bothered by the presence of several concerned college students peacefully praying and sometimes kneeling along the edge of the sidewalk? Could it be that (despite decades of business - perhaps "quiet" business - in the community), the facility is afraid of its image? Could it be that the presence of these earnest youth quietly praying turns away potential customers? Food for thought.

Mauser1, it is my opinion that the people witnessing outside the facility are there because they feel women are being victimized, not because they feel the women are "less deserving" as TCB propounds. To my knowledge they make the effort to be out there, not to judge the women, but to be the last sign of hope (of other alternatives) and the first sign of mercy when they exit. I know for a fact that a person who stood out there carried a brochure from Project Rachel that said "Neither Do I Condemn You" should someone approach that person standing out there. I don't think they are "holier than thou" as you name call them. Rather, my belief is that they truly want to help those going in.

Germaine, Is that what these young folks are being fed, "your just prac you rights.." Baloney. If the "power dynamics" where even close to equal, you could make that argument. But the clients are already having a very rough time. Oh, please! I hope the young are observant enough to see this is clearly an attempt to intimidate and guilt inflict. They being maneuvered to believing those women are less deserving of Christian charity than they are. They are less.." was the same brain washing technique used before the WWII. why would a church promote such thinking? t all looks so simple doesn't it? I spent a day at a planned parenthood in a larger city. The greatest majority of those women, on that day, could not say, "No" By that I mean they lived in cultures where declining sex was not an option. They did NOT want to be there. Most already had more children than they could care for or feed. In some cultures - those are not man's problems - those are women's problems. Those women did not have preventative birth control as an option. They were out of options. I know for some women, it may be elective or semi-elective. However, on that day - I gained a great deal of sensitivity for those women. Lastly, the God I believe in - does not give up on the souls of any viable b babies.

Sam, OK - reflect! How many people do you want staring you down when you go in for your next pelvic exam? What you are doing may be technically legal but rude and inconsiderate in the extreme. Really think about how someone else might feel - look around you and wonder what they are thinking about you the next you time go in for a pelvic. Please don't try to tell me you are doing this God. The God I believe does not abandon the souls of children at any age.

Hello TCB, It seems that what she primarily takes issue with is the infringement on her first amendment rights (freedom to peacably assemble, free speech, and free exercise of religion). What's wrong with that? Why do you take issue with that? Are there any police records of people outside that facility being addressed? My guess is not. I know for a fact that those who prayed outside on Friday mornings (a time that facility schedules for abortions not pelvic exams) had a permit too. (Whether or not it's just for them to have been obliged to get that is a whole other question.) I also believe that the people out there are doing it because they feel the people going in are being victimized (regardless if its their choice or not). She said they kept a respectful distance, and didn't harm or harrass anyone going in. If they're not blocking access and are on a PUBLIC sidewalk, what's wrong with them standing up for their beliefs? Why do you want to deny people the freedom to do that?

I suppose you are right after all if we allow the Westboro Baptist Church to protest at funerals why not these holier than thou folks. In my view they are both cut from the same cloth.

Also, since when have people's feelings been the standard of judging what's right and wrong? They definitely have an impact, but shouldn't be the sole reason. If you need examples, let me know.

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