Calling it the States of Refuge campaign, 15 pro-life activist groups launched a yearlong endeavor beginning January 22, 2012, to close any or all of the lone abortion clinics remaining in each of five states.
The goal of the groups is to “establish the first abortion-free states since Roe vs. Wade,” adding even one closure would be a “breakthrough in our nation.” I agree such a closure or closures will constitute a milestone. Those states are:
Little Rock, Arkansas Jackson, Mississippi Fargo, North Dakota Sioux Falls, South Dakota Jackson, Wyoming
The scope of the pro-life groups includes Truth Tours using large abortion pictures on both city streets and major college campuses, mailers to all churches in those states, and a five-state funeral procession carrying an aborted baby.
Last week States of Refuge focused on Jackson, Wyoming, and Dr. Brent Blue, who commits abortions at Emerg-A-Care.
In an effort to thwart the effort, because both last year and this year pro-lifers planned their protests during the city’s annual Elkfest – which resulted in pro-abortion violence – the city went so far as to ban the display of abortion pictures, which the State Supreme Court ruled unconstitutional April 10.
(Yes, those are elk antlers in the top photo and photo right.)
So a group called Jackson Hole United formed…
… to do all they could legally to keep people from seeing the reality of abortion by conducting “Project Detour,” holding their own signs encouraging traffic to avoid the pro-lifers. Reported Rachel Maddow:
If you saw the protesters somewhere, you reported it on the Jackson Hole United Facebook page, with a call for help holding up signs. “Turn here to avoid to avoid protesters,” one sign read. Another said, “Stay calm. Graphic images ahead.” The results weren’t perfect, but Elkfest happened peacefully.
Maddow’s linked article doesn’t say who vandalized whom, although I knew it had to be abortion proponents. Otherwise the piece would have screamed “pro-life violence!”
But to confirm I spoke with Pastor Mark Holick, who was present and said the perpetrators were indeed abortion proponents who, in one case, spray painted one of the Truth Trucks, and in another swerved a car toward pro-lifers who were holding signs.
Here were some of the signs advocating “Civility Compassion Love” by way of abortion support or denial…
It is hard to fathom there are churches that support abortion, although we know it is true.
In Jackson, five area churches joined the Jackson Hole United effort.
One was Presbyterian Church of Jackson Hole.
Below is a video of Rev. Dr. Paul Hayden explaining to his congregation – relatively aged, I note – this past Sunday why their church was being picketed and how in Christ pro-abortion beliefs are as valid as pro-life beliefs.
I can think of no better example of the “lukewarm church” than this. Hayden also implied the abortion issue is political, not religious…
[Top photo via Jackson Hole Daily; 2nd photo (of Pastor Flip Benham) and bottom photo (of Leslie Hanks) via Leslie Hanks of The Passionate Pro-Lifer; 3rd photo via Jackson Hole United; 4th and 5th photos via Maddow]