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Catch Them and Try Them as Terrorists

That’s what I say about this awful story. Abortion clinic bombings are just as detestable as any other kind of terrorism. Such people do no one--least of all the cause of pro-life--any good. Indeed, I have less mercy for them than I do for straight-forward anti-American terrorists. They have hurt the cause of justice not only with their actions, but also in what their actions reflect upon the good people and the good cause they pretend to support.

Discussions - 18 Comments

The article says "Forty-one clinic bombings have been reported in the past 30 years."

Now, what about profiling potential clinic bombers, to boot them out of the country or whatever? You know, to PRE-EMPT their crimes! I think I'd faint if someone on the right - come on Michell Malkin! - suggested that one. I'm thinking they're mostly white, right-wing evangelical Christians, probably advocates or practitioners of home-schooling...

This same story was reported on various media outlets, but -- while this (brave?) writer from the Houston Chronicle wrote the headline "Pipe bomb left outside Austin abortion clinic" -- many other media outlets covering same chose the euphamistic woman's clinic to describe the bomb site. In fairness, most of the coverage I read did point out that this clinic performed abortions, usually in the first sentence or two.

I was particular dumbstruck by the Daily Texan's coverage. Their writer went so far as to call the target a "Woman's Health Clinic". The word "abortion" shows up only once in their coverage, in this sentence:

The incident occurred a week after the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 decision to uphold the 2003 Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.

Now, I would never condone any attack such as this, and concur with Julie's sentiments. But as I read the various coverages, I couldn't help but wonder: Is this double-talk just political correctness run further amuck, or is there something more sinister at work?

What about Mexican terrorists like at La Raza? Jose Angel Gutierrez, founder of La Raza, said: "We have got to eliminate the gringo, and what I mean by that is if the worst comes to the worst, we have got to kill him."  And let's not forget the "soft terrorism" of the neocons. Trotskyite thugs like Strauss, Bloom and Jaffa were on a mission to destroy the REAL West and replace it with useful abstractions.

You know, I'm starting to suspect that "Real Conservative" is a Moby.

I don't personally approve of such attacks, but the Thoreau-ite inside me wants to say that such "civil disobedience" is morally valid if done with a clear conscience. To the truly devout, in fact, it may be immoral for them NOT to do this...

Am I the only one here waiting for the other shoe to drop?

Surely I'm not the only one betting that it will turn out that this incident was perpetrated by Abortion Supporters in order to peddle the notion that the Abortion supporters are under siege.

Just wait and watch.

What is a Moby?

Boo - This is not civil disobedience.

We'll "wait and watch."

I think Julie has it exactly right.

A "moby" is a Leftist who pretends to be on the Right, expressed ludicrous opinions and over-the-top rhetoric in order to discredit otherwise sensible ideas. The musician "Moby" encouraged supporters to do this with rightwing blogs (or something like that), and so such acts have been given this name. Essentially, a type of troll.

Abortion clinic bombings are just as detestable as any other kind of terrorism.


No, they are not. These bombings are aimed at the bricks and morter of human chop shops. They are not in their aims and methods comparable to airline hijackings or suicide bombers.

Art, when you said:

They are not in their aims and methods comparable to airline hijackings or suicide bombers.
... you are essentially saying terrorism is okay as long as it's against the right people. Like it or not, this makes you a terrorist sympathizer. Unless you're a moby.

I agree...you are either against terrorism (clandestine political violence against unarmed civilians) or you aren't. There is no middle ground here, I'm afraid.

... you are essentially saying terrorism is okay as long as it's against the right people. Like it or not, this makes you a terrorist sympathizer. Unless you're a moby.

I agree...you are either against terrorism (clandestine political violence against unarmed civilians) or you aren't.


My memory may be failing me, but as I recall, the bombings of abortion clinics (most prevalent ca. 1985) were generally carried out at night when the staff and clientele had gone home. Their effect was to disrupt the operations of these clinics by injuring the physical plant. That may be considered arson or vandalism. It does not constitute violence against 'unarmed civilians'. I should also note that the proprietors and staff of these institutions are armed with surgical instruments with which they destroy the lives of innocents. People doing their shopping at a suq in Baghdad or flying home to Tel Aviv after a business trip to Nicosia are not predatory criminals. Abortionists are. The misalignment in this country between the natural and the positive law on these matters is due to a judicial ukase notable for its contempt for public opinion, for legal professionalism, and for intellectual integrity.

Julie Ponzi offers, "I have less mercy for them than I do for straight-forward anti-American terrorists." Given the nature of their targets and the greater circumcription of their methods, does her statement make any sense at all?

Their effect was to disrupt the operations of these clinics by injuring the physical plant. That may be considered arson or vandalism. It does not constitute violence against 'unarmed civilians'. I should also note that the proprietors and staff of these institutions are armed with surgical instruments with which they destroy the lives of innocents. People doing their shopping at a suq in Baghdad or flying home to Tel Aviv after a business trip to Nicosia are not predatory criminals. Abortionists are.

Sorry, that's ridiculous. Destroying private property and/or destroying other peoples' lives is illegal. So far, destroying fetuses is not. You may not like the law, but you and every other citizen are bound to obey it. Since abortion-clinic bombers (and abortion-doctor shooters) are not sanctioned military, and since the people/property targeted are not sanctioned "enemies," then the activity is illegal and is, in essence, an act of terrorism (it's political, so it goes beyond merely 'criminal'). Moreover, what's the point of bombing a couple of clinics, or shooting a doctor or two? Such acts in and of themselves have no likelihood of ending legal abortion. There is no point to such behavior unless you are trying to terrorize people into following some agenda. That's terrorism, fella...as nice a textbook example as you are likely to find.

Sorry, that's ridiculous.

It is no such thing.


Destroying private property and/or destroying other peoples' lives is illegal. So far, destroying fetuses is not.

What you have said is of consequence in ascertaining the course of action the public authority will take with regard to either crime. The moral status of an act remains what it is even if the state is otiose in suppressing it. Julie Ponzi professes to regard blowing up the premises of a flagitious enterprise as meriting a greater devotion of institutional effort on the part of the police and the courts than the blowing up innocents going about their business in a subway station, don't ask me why.

I should also note that by statute, the practice of abortion is generally unlawful in 46 states. The federal Supreme Court (among other bad actors) has arbitrarily impeded the enforcement of the law for 34 years.


You may not like the law, but you and every other citizen are bound to obey it.

Tell that to Mr. Justice Stevens, Madame Justice Ginsburg, the corpse of Mr. Justice Blackmun and assorted other miscreants.


Since abortion-clinic bombers (and abortion-doctor shooters) are not sanctioned military, and since the people/property targeted are not sanctioned "enemies," then the activity is illegal and is, in essence, an act of terrorism (it's political, so it goes beyond merely 'criminal').

You can call it 'terrorism' or you can call it 'stickball'. It makes no difference to me. Blowing up the premises of bad actors is not an act morally equivalent to slaughtering innocents.


Moreover, what's the point of bombing a couple of clinics, or shooting a doctor or two? Such acts in and of themselves have no likelihood of ending legal abortion.

That last is an unsupported empirical statement. Since I do not engage in these acts, I am not sure what the tactics and strategy behind them are, though I imagine that their perpetrators are concerned to incapacitate bad actors.


There is no point to such behavior unless you are trying to terrorize people into following some agenda.

If it renders the operation of these clinics an uninsurable risk, it saves lives and impedes the continued degradation of sensibilities by what goes on in these clinics (at some cost to be sure). I suppose you could say that actuaries and claims adjusters are being terrorized into making business decisions congruent with justice.


That's terrorism, fella...as nice a textbook example as you are likely to find.


No, it is not a textbook example, for reasons already stated.

I would be pleased to see meticulous adherence to procedural norms in the pursuit of justice in these matters. The destruction of those norms was effected not by James Kopp but by Harry Blackmun and six co-conspirators.

Well, I would waste some more time on you, but I don't talk to terrorsymps. All I'll say is that, in his own mind, Osama thinks the same thing. This is the U.S., however, and we have laws here. Take the prescribed course to changing the laws, or blow people and property up and go to jail, John Brown.

And people think us "neo-Confederates" are crazy. The light from crazy would take six years to reach this Art Deco guy (unless, of course, he's a moby).

Osama thinks the same thing

No he does NOT. At least, by the evidence we have. Art does have a point - arson and terrorism is NOT the same thing...

Violence is violence...all of it is meant to terrorize people into doing what you want them to do. Burning down a single abortion clinic probably doesn't stop a single abortion, it just redistributes the mayhem.

Now, seriously, we can hardly condemn some terrorism but approve of that which furthers our own agenda. I think they call that "hypocrisy." Osama blows up property and people because he thinks God wants him to, and the logic is identical for the anti-abortion terrorist. Both think they are "saving" people down the road and "fixing" the world. Nonsense...terror never changes hearts and minds, which is what you have to do to truly "fix" the world.

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