Dispatches from the Sidewalk — Clinic Defense (NJ) 01/25/14

Trigger warning: sexism, racism, verbal abuse, NSFW, DV, sexual assault in the Vine posts

Note: This is what I do now, full-time. I’m completely committed to changing the face of clinic access in this country. If you can, consider supporting my work so I can do more of it by clicking HERE and making a one-time or recurring (just click the box) contribution. All the funding goes to equipment, travel to other conferences/clinics/meetings with pro-choice legislators/training new escort programs and supplies. Thank you!

This was a “quiet” week with less audible-from-two-blocks-away hate speech. With that being the case, it was easier to get some of the whispered passive aggressive turned openly hostile language, talking points and relentless stalking captured. If you haven’t read Dean Obeidallah’s piece The Loud Truth About Abortion Protesters, check it out. He describes the woman who is typically in the super expensive, big, fluffy boots in the pics/Vines. She darted across three lanes of traffic when she spotted him and his girlfriend. Dean got to hear her full polite “counseling” routine. And the videos show what happens when it’s clear things aren’t going her way.

This week’s Storify:

Since there’s less vitriol in my feed with the Bread of Life preachers in Queens, I’m adding in some bonus footage! Typically, I don’t like giving credibility or attention to obnoxious, extremist anything. However, the videos the Bread of Life/Abolish Human Abortion folks take themselves in attempt to make themselves look positive are quite revealing. There is more to be had on their YouTube channels. If you want national, similar footage just search “DeathScorts” on the YouTube home page. Just know, I warned you before you did it.

Recap of why I’m posting the videos, comments, tweets, and anything else I can get my hands on:

To aid in sidelining them, I will continue to post from in front of the clinics where I escort. My Vine feed is exclusively (with the exception of the occasional dog video because CUTENESS) devoted to documenting the reality of accessing clinics. You don’t need to subscribe or sign up; it’s a public website with a series of captioned 4-second videos. I mainly use the captions to include quotes and rants that don’t fit in the Vines. I also post through Twitter; if you don’t use that medium, you can read my feed right here, on this website over to the right side of this post.

I’m doing some website construction so I can have a tab with all the clinic defense posts, storifys, and other content. I want to link to other escorts who are doing similar documentation, so it won’t be up immediately. I’ll be including background on clinic escort programs — i.e. why they’re needed, how they were created and what makes them an important component of reproductive justice in the current hostile climate. Thanks for your patience while I work out the details of formatting and in the mean time, follow the #ProtectTheZone hashtag that NARAL helped kick off the day SCOTUS heard MA’s Buffer Zone challenge. I thank them for reaching out to those of us who spend time on the sidewalks and using our quotes/pictures.

Note: My apologies if you got the auto-publish posts courtesy of Storify. I was hoping I’d be able to embed the text/pictures/etc into WordPress (my host here); needless to say, not a successful attempt. Still a work in progress! Also, unless there’s a lot of text in a blog post, I’m going to assume you don’t want to listen to me read the few sentences in a mostly visual piece. Hence, the lack of an audio version.

If you found this post informative, entertaining, helpful, etc. you can subscribe to the Katie Speak Weekly Mailing which has all my posts, radio segments and activism info. You can also click SUPPORT to keep me speaking and follow me on Facebook and twitter. Thanks!

Categories: Clinic Defense, Thoughts

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. just FYI, the videos are marked “private” and don’t play.

    • Yeah, this post is from January. YouTube responded to requests to remove some of them and others were pulled by the picketers when they found out there was legislation for a buffer zone pending.
      I wish I had the time to go back and reedit all my posts, but I just don’t. I have to be good with them having dates and therefore dated material.

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