On the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision, a small group of local activists, some from the Southeast Tennessee chapter of Students for Life of America (SFLA), gathered at Coolidge Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in peaceful remembrance of the over 63 million lives lost under Roe.
At the same time, a group of pro-abortion activists, including the so-called “New Suffragettes,” held their own rally to demand that Tennessee’s Human Life Protection Act be repealed or amended. Their rally included a life-sized black coffin being carried by six “pallbearers” dressed in black – apparently unaware of the irony of such a display – and a “conga line for abortion.”
It also included verbal and physical assaults upon the peaceful pro-life demonstrators. “We were called rapists and misogynists, our signs were torn, we were stepped on and harassed,” wrote William Reynolds, who was present.
Later, after the main group of pro-abortion activists had gone … we stayed outside for a few minutes to have a conversation with a woman who was confused about what TN’s HLPA [Human Life Protection Act] said about treatment for ectopic pregnancies. Our conversation was interrupted by two ladies who obnoxiously began to butt in to the conversation.
After a few minutes of back and forth, one of the ladies shouted an expletive at us and pulled a clean empty glass bottle out of her purse … and smashed it onto the ground directly at our group. My photographer, Michael, got a small piece of glass in his eye.
Reynolds wrote that he was unable to find a single person on the pro-abortion side who could explain to him how or why abortion is health care. Furthermore, he said, “Nobody could show me how supporting abortion fit into the feminist values of equality, non-violence and non-discrimination.”
In the end, despite the vitriol that was showered upon them, Reynolds concluded that “[o]ur little group of eight folks was fearless[,] and I could not be more proud of how our activists handled themselves.”
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