by Melanie Israel
In the five months since someone leaked a draft majority opinion by the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade—which the high court officially did June 24—pro-life Americans have faced a wave of violent attacks.
Pro-abortion politicians from President Joe Biden on down haven’t just been silent about the attacks on pro-life organizations. They’ve helped fan the flames.
Have you not heard about these attacks that have swept the country? That makes sense. After all, most of the corporate media either has ignored or woefully underreported it.
An Overview of Pro-Abortion Violence
From vandalism to verbal threats to firebombings, groups such as Jane’s Revenge have organized and taken credit openly for such attacks. Crickets from the Justice Department.
Activists protested for weeks outside the homes of Supreme Court justices. Protesters harassed justices’ families, neighbors, and communities.
The Biden administration basically did nothing to address these demonstrations, even though at least some apparently violated federal law.
One abortion supporter even confessed to traveling from California to assassinate Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
In July, a pro-life teenager in Kansas reported being assaulted by an abortion supporter while canvassing for a pro-life amendment to the state constitution.
In September, an 84-year-old Michigan woman was shot in the back by an abortion supporter while she canvassed against a pro-abortion amendment to that state’s constitution. (Thankfully, she is recovering.)
Also in September, Students for Life—no stranger to acts of vandalism and verbal harassment on college campuses—reported that an abortion supporter threw a cup of urine at two pro-life students while the group was peacefully displaying information about a pro-life campaign.
Most recently, FBI agents arrested Mark Houck, a pro-life Catholic activist and father of seven, at his home in Pennsylvania. The FBI’s dubious charge is that Houck violated a law called the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (also known as the FACES Act), which makes it a crime to use force to intimidate or obstruct someone from getting or providing an abortion.
The incident stemmed from an altercation earlier this summer in which Houck reportedly pushed an abortion clinic volunteer away from Houck’s 12-year-old son, who was being harassed by the volunteer. Local officials had refused to bring charges against Houck.
Biden’s Justice Department, however, is pursuing federal charges that carry a penalty of up to 11 years in prison.
Months ago, Houck’s attorneys told the FBI that he would cooperate fully with law enforcement. No matter. The FBI still chose to raid his home at gunpoint in the early morning in front of his wife and children.
Pro-Abortion Leaders Double Down
The wave of violence against pro-life activists and organizations is an outrage.
Biden’s “unity speech” last month in Philadelphia rang hollow for many reasons, his silence on pro-abortion violence among them.
“Joe Biden did get one thing right tonight,” Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts said at the time. “We are indeed fighting a battle for the soul of our nation. The problem is, he’s fighting on the wrong side.”
Also last month, Vice President Kamala Harris applauded Democrat state attorneys general for “taking on” life-saving pregnancy resource centers, even as these groups dealt with threats, vandalism, and worse.
In Congress, pro-abortion lawmakers are promoting legislation authorizing the Federal Trade Commission to fine pregnancy resource centers for “disinformation,” meaning accurate information about the physical and psychological harms of abortion, as well as alternatives to abortion.
Last week, the FBI reportedly questioned a pro-life sidewalk counselor over an altercation outside a Planned Parenthood clinic. The counselor apparently had tried to stop an abortion advocate from destroying a pro-life sign with a boxcutter.
As with the case of the Philadelphia dad, local officials declined to press charges. So why is the FBI engaging? Is another FACE Act raid on a pro-lifer in the works?
Americans Deserve Better
For their part, some members of Congress are demanding answers. Should they get the chance next year, pro-life lawmakers should hold oversight hearings and hear directly from Justice Department employees under oath.
In any case, the Biden administration should—at the very least—call for an end to the violence. The FBI must answer for its selective enforcement of the law.
Congress must follow through on its commitment to conduct oversight on the Biden administration’s policies.
And every American should resolve to uphold our country’s foundational principles of free speech and peaceful expression. We can’t afford not to.
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Melanie Israel is a policy analyst with the DeVos Center for Life, Religion, and Family at The Heritage Foundation.
Photo “Pro-Life Supporters” by Victoria Pickering. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0