Pro-life sidewalk counselors are frequently under attack by abortion activists. It’s become increasingly common for them to be arrested. They’re targeted by pro-abortion legislation. And they’re threatened by abortion activists, including with violence. And yet throughout all of this, the abortion industry insists that they are the ones under attack, despite the fact that most sidewalk counselors are merely looking to give women options — real choices — beyond abortion.
But there is, at least in New York, a positive break for pro-lifers. A judge just ruled against New York’s former attorney general, who sued pro-life sidewalk counselors, accusing them of harassing and threatening the women trying to enter Choices Women’s Medical Center. Every Saturday since 2012, pro-lifers would meet outside the abortion facility, trying to persuade women not to have abortions. But in June of 2017, the now-former attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, filed a lawsuit claiming that pro-lifers 1) tried to block the abortion facility’s entrance to prevent women from entering, 2) issued death threats, and 3) refused the women’s requests to be left alone. Schneiderman requested an injunction against the pro-life protesters and sidewalk counselors, as well as a 16-foot buffer zone around the abortion facility. But according to Judge Carol Bagley Amon, there was just one problem: Schneiderman had no evidence to show that any of what he accused the 13 defendants of was true.
In her decision, Judge Amon wrote:
The interactions on the sidewalk outside Choices were generally quite short, and there is no credible evidence that any protester disregarded repeated requests to be left alone over an extended period or changed his or her tone or message in response to requests to be left alone in a way that suggested an intent to harass, annoy, or alarm.
Schneiderman resigned in May of 2018 after being accused of assault by multiple women. Live Action News readers may recognize Schneiderman as the attorney general who worked with at least one abortion activist who created a fake Facebook profile, and attempted to meet with and spy on and entrap pro-lifers while pretending to be a fellow pro-lifer. The woman who created a fake identity was, in actuality, an official escort for Choices who was working directly with the attorney general’s office, placing the information she gathered in dossiers and handing it over to Schneiderman’s office. The AG’s office even helped her obtain a hidden camera to better spy on the pro-lifers.
The pro-lifers were defended by the Thomas More Society, who applauded Judge Amon’s decision. “We believe the court had clear recognition of what was happening in this case: the former attorney general, whose support of the abortion lobby is well-documented, was pushing a narrative not supported by the evidence,” Martin Cannon, Thomas More Society Special Counsel, said. “The case was an abuse of the rights of peaceful New York citizens, something Mr. Schneiderman had a duty to protect, not attack.”