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Monday, August 30, 2004

"Do we want to build a movement that's about throwing chunks of cement and then celebrating when we take a cop out? Or a movement that has respect for life, and that represents a moral and ethical high ground to the violence perpetrated by the state?"

Said by a major pro-life activist arguing properly against violence perpetrated at abortion clinics, their workers and patrons?

Guess again.

This jaw-dropper was said by John Sellers of the Ruckus Society, a “direct-action training group” which factored greatly in the protest of a 1999 World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Seattle, Washington. Apparently, their members and others “smashed store windows, set cars ablaze and did millions of dollars in property damage.”

This is one of the many “professional demonstrator groups” planning to disrupt the RNC and “shut it down,” meaning the city of New York, but who left the DNC in Boston altogether alone. Maybe John Sellers is rethinking his violence tactics, but then again, maybe not?

This is one “counter-counterprotest” I think I will pass on, although some of these folks were apparently at the April 25 “March For Choice” in D.C. this year.

If it’s true that groups like these have “Internet sites…[encouraging] protestors to bring slingshots to attack police horses, and marbles that can be thrown beneath those horses’ hooves to make them slip and injure themselves and their police officer riders” and “have provided ‘anarchist cookbook’ recipes that tell protestors how to set off sensors used to detect terrorist explosives and chemical weapons,” then that is loathsome at best and criminal at worst.

This is almost as horrible as killing abortion doctors, unless one of those police officers or a bystander crushed under a stampede of panicked people also dies.

The vast majority of Pro-Life people abhor the conduct and attitudes of those who condone/perform any violence, stalking or other illegal activity against pro-choice folks (of course, the major media doesn't want us to know or see that, so that news is "blacked-out"). But how can this Ruckus director, with straight face, say that his group has "respect for life" when they reportedly are aided and financially supported by a group of politicians/newsmedia moguls known for being for abortion?

Is it really true that this group in particular has tax-exempt status as a 501(c)(3) “charitable organization,” as granted during the Clinton Administration?

Is it really true that the Kerry campaign’s current (just joined April ’04) Director of Online Communications and Online Organizing is Zack Exley, and that he was “trained by and has worked as a ‘workshop facilitator’ for Ruckus?"

Is it really true that Ruckus had taken about $23,000 from the Tides Foundation (supported by the Teresa Heinz Kerry-controlled Heinz Foundation to the tune of $400,000), and $150,000 from the Turner Foundation, run by Cable News Network (CNN) founder Ted Turner?

Further astonishment came with finding Ruckus’ Director John Sellers' signature on this quote on this site: "We affirm that the United States is a nation of laws, rooted in fundamental American values of democracy, justice, human rights, and respect for life.” Signed by Sellers, and a few hundred others, in a statement against the war in Iraq, issued presumably before the war began.

The page goes on to say, “We foresee that a military response would not end the terror. Rather, it would spark a cycle of escalating violence, the loss of innocent lives, and new acts of terrorism. As citizens of this great nation, we support the efforts being made to find those behind the acts of terror. Bringing them to justice under the rule of law - not military action - is the way to end the violence.”

I’m not supporting the war in Iraq, don’t get me wrong. And I do think any vote in any Presidential election is one that is for the less-wrong of two imperfect choices.

That said, it amazes me how those purporting violence in the NYC streets can speak about “ending the violence.”

Amazing how those who support a pro-choice candidate and/or violently oppose an imperfectly but more pro-life one, can commandeer the phrase “respect for life.”

I am simply speechless.

Thank God that the author of the original “Anarchist’s Cookbook” is not.

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