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Where The Dr. Tiller Murder Leaves The Abortion Issue

The murder of Wichita Kansas abortion provider, Dr. George Tiller, 67, leaves some interesting political fallout. Dr. Tiller was serving as an usher at his regular church, The Reformation Lutheran Church, when a he was fatally shot to death, and a blue 1993 Taurus was seen speeding away from the murder scene. Late reports are that the arrest of a gunman has taken place.tiller.gif

Dr. Tiller was always a very controversial figure in the whole abortion question because he was one of the rare providers of late term abortions in the United States. Many in the antiabortion movement absolutely hated Tiller who was often nicknamed, "Tiller the baby killer". Tiller was shot in both arms once before. And Tiller was once put on trial in Kansas for violation of 19 misdemeanor laws in regards to abortion providing, but found not guilty on all charges.

Part of the problem for the antiabortion movement in the aftermath of the murder of Dr. George Tiller is that they might have have eliminated a hated figure. But at the same time the more radical elements in the antiabortion movement have now pushed themselves closer to being viewed as domestic terrorists and have also increased the likelihood of prosecution under racketeering and other organized crime laws. The antiabortion movement hardly needed to paint themselves into this legal corner of being branded as domestic terrorists and now subject to some newer and more serious laws enacted since 9/11.

The antiabortion movement didn't really gain very much today. In fact, they lost a lot of legal ground. This movement really needed to take the high moral ground on the abortion issue if they ever hoped to sway more public opinion in their direction. Instead, they have only rallied more on the pro-choice side today, as well as given judges a new incentive to allow tougher laws against the more radical elements of the antiabortion movement.

One very controversial figure hated by the antiabortion movement may be gone today. But the antiabortion movement lost a lot of political ground today as well. For the antiabortion movement, Tiller's murder is a pretty good example of winning a battle, but sacrificing losing the war for that battle's sake. That's not gaining very much.

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Comments (6)


This is what Napolitano was speaking about a few months ago, the right wing terror threat. You put people of limited intelligence with a fervent belief in imaginary beings like God and this is the result.

As the the conservative movement becomes more and more marginalized it will turn to violence more often.It was this desperation that fueled Timothy McVeigh.

Jeff Blogworthy:

Paul Hooson,

Yours is one of the more reasonable post by the left on this issue. Thanks for avoiding the histrionics. It is true that this event threatens the pro-life movement. This is a fact of which pro life organizations are very much aware. It is absolutely not true that Mr. Tiller is characteristic of the movement as some will allege to political advantage.

Sheik Yur Bouty:


I'm not defending what the killer did, but no matter how much you wish it were so, killing 1 person is not the same as bombing a school bus full of children (real terror).

You do your side no favors by making such an argument.


I will actually agree with Jeff above in that this was a very reasonable and well positioned post by Paul. This incident will do nothing for the pro-life movement. What happened yesterday was murder, evil and heartless. Regardless of the type of person Dr. Tiller was, he didn't deserve this fate from this person.

However, I don't think this one incident will cast the entire pro-life movement into the domestic terrorist category. If it does, I can only assume that it would be politically motivated and not based on what normal people would consider terrorist activity. If a pattern develops that would surely change my reasoning, but I would tend to think this is the lone work of a deranged individual whose mind is too warped to know right from wrong.

Jimmy Wentz:

The fact is that a convert to Islam shot down two US Army recruiters at a Little Rock, Arkansas, recruiting station yesterday, and no one is reporting it. Muslim extremists murdered at least 14 people years ago in the DC area, and Al Gore protegé Chief Charles Moose, when after "disenchanted white males", despite dozens of eye-witness reports of African American males leaving the scene. The murder of Tiller was stupid (the guy had already been declared mentally ill), but the ongoing violence of Muslims against American citizens and institutions, under protection of the Federal government, is the larger and unreported problem.

Jimmy Wentz:

"went after" not "when after". Excuse me.


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