A Charitable Argument »« Better Commandments

Secular Pro-Life Same Old Scare Tactics

If I were to tell you that a purportedly secular anti-abortion group was engaging in the very same fear mongering and harassment of abortion providers that the largely Christian dominated pro-life groups do; would you be surprised? The True Pooka’s final report on Secular Pro-Life’s tactics is posted.

In addition to the other tactics Pooka documented, the group is promoting a campaign against abortion providers in the guise of concern for the safety of women. According to Pooka, in addition to making stuff up about the safety of abortion to women…

The site also doubles as an intimidation tool to be used against doctors. It doesn’t matter what type of doctor you are, if you’re a family health doctor and abortion consists of 1% of your medical activities, they’ll label you an ABORTION DOCTOR and list your name next to numerous other doctors who secularprolife have judged to be unsafe doctors ( judgment passed using their hard earned degrees in Looking Shit Up On-Line from Internet University).

I know there are people reading this who are not at all surprised by the sliminess. I hope that they haven’t also grown, so calloused by this group and other anti-abortion groups’ relentless assault on the right to choose whether a person gives birth, that these tactics are working.

However, I don’t think this group’s presence at atheist conferences, a group that misrepresents both science and the truth, can be totally explained by its relentless tactics wearing people down.

How did it get past the smell detector?

The group’s members have the appearance of fresh faced kids. Ex-Christians like myself or people with well meaning anti-abortion friends may be mistaking what they are doing with the mistakes we made as Christians. In my Christian past, I have actually given diapers and my daughter’s bassinet to a Christian pregnancy counseling center in hopes of helping women, who wanted to give birth and keep the child.

Looking back on it now, I was misguided. These groups main function is to guilt women with ultrasounds of their fetuses. I remember the tour, and the center’s pride that they had received an ultrasound.

Would you be surprised to learn that the Secular Pro-Life website directs people with crisis pregnancies to Christian counseling centers? This is the picture posted on their resources page…

The group’s defines its secular mission thusly…

Secularism. SPL seeks to increase the inclusiveness of the overall pro-life movement by creating space for pro-life atheists, agnostics, humanists, and other secularists.

I don’t think directing the atheists, agnostics, etc. to a Christian pregnancy center agrees with their purported mission to create a safe space for them. Particularly if they survived spiritual abuse.

This group is not simply misguided. A former member of theirs glibly showed all of us including children in the audience a video of abortions during a debate with Matt Dillahunty. She most definitely had the fresh faced, well meaning look down, even when she showed us the video without batting an eye. She also argued that abortion should be criminalized and prosecuted as murder. Matt’s recent debate with an SPL member showed the same callous lack of regard for women. The Christian debater argued that a woman shouldn’t be allowed to abort a pregnancy that would cripple her.

I don’t ever remember being that inhumane and judgmental at the height of my Christian years, and there is difference between some misguided person that you know or the pro-lifer you may have been and SPL.

As of this moment,  Pooka and I plan on seeing them at The American Atheists Convention in Salt Lake City this weekend. We hope the information we provided helps people to make informed decisions. I can’t help picturing a Reed Warbler unwittingly nurturing an imposter Cuckoo chick.

 

Comments

  1. says

    lilandra:
    I probably wouldn’t have come across TruePooka’s takedown of SecularPro-Life’s tactics without you blogging about it. Thanks to you and Pooka.

    I’m curious to see if they’ll respond to Pooka’s request that they state what their official position is.

    • says

      Thanks! I consulted Pooka because this group has been on my radar since Reason Rally. He is a very good researcher with experience dealing with anti-choice groups to boot. He saw things I didn’t see the first day just cruising their site. I didn’t want to take credit for his work so I snorked him instead.

      • deannajoylyons says

        Thanks to you and Pooka for covering this! I was at the AA convention after the Reason Rally too and was very concerned about SPL being there. I lhad one of their pamphlets (I’ve since lost it, unfortunately) and it made a number of bogus claims about how well off women are in a bunch of countries that ban abortion. You and Pooka may find them some easy debunking if they use a similar one at this year’s con.

  2. Philip Rose says

    Nicely said. I will also point out their recent blogging activity calls for members to proselytize to casual Christians as easy targets. While that doesn’t prove they aren’t secular one does reach a point where you wonder about their pervasive connection to religious-types.

    • Monocle Smile says

      The referrals to Christian counseling centers is the tipping point for me. Whatever nebulous jot of respect I might have had left for SPL has just been given an acid bath.

  3. Hj Hornbeck says

    Give’m hell at the AA convention! I haven’t the foggiest clue why an atheist organization would give some advertising space to a pseudo-secular one that promotes misinformation, fear, and shame.

  4. Hj Hornbeck says

    Philip Rose @2:

    While that doesn’t prove they aren’t secular one does reach a point where you wonder about their pervasive connection to religious-types.

    Oh, I’m well past that point. Pretending to be a secular organization is an old tactic for anti-choice groups, dating back to 1990, I reckon. A group similar to SPL come dangerously close to admitting it’s all a ruse here:

    the strenuous efforts of abolitionists have yielded very little in terms of measurable progress in reducing abortion, so it’s time to try a more fruitful strategy.

    I have my own beliefs about the sanctity and rights of an unborn baby, but I don’t think we’ll change many minds by arguing about that. The proliferation of 3D ultrasound machines, new research about fetal awareness and pain, and the increasing viability of extremely premature babies will continue to make an impression on some people, but for those who are heavily invested in the moral neutrality of abortion on demand, and who see the concession of any status to the fetus as in direct conflict with the rights of the mother, this won’t make a lot of difference.

    We need more discussion, then, of abortion as a women’s issue. Abortion damages women. It does them physical and psychological harm, which is multiplied by the fact that very few women seeking abortions give their informed consent (meaning consent even after being advised of the risks.) Those of us who take such things seriously tend to agree that it does them spiritual harm. More broadly, a culture in which abortion is seen as essentially harmless wreaks profound changes to our collective understanding of motherhood, sexuality, the obligations of mothers and fathers to each other and their children, and adulthood.

    I would be shocked if Secular Pro-Life was any different.

  5. says

    I see the outright and vocal rejection of such dishonesty in the service of anti-woman bigotry as an essential step for organized atheism to move forward. If the movement can’t get to the point where they take a look at stuff by Secular Pro-Life and immediately recognize, hey, these people are peddling bullshit that is actually harmful and antithetical to the values to our members and supporters, we don’t need them here, and soon, then I don’t see how the movement could possibly have a viable direction in which to grow.

  6. says

    Oooooohhh, preggo-belly.
    That image, showing a disembodied woman (in this case by taking a shot from behind) with a belly that’s way further along than women who typically have abortions are. Because they actually look very much like non-pregnant women.
    Typical anti-woman scare tactic, because it’s very hard to convince anybody that they are killing babies when the aborted fetus is indistinguishable from that of a dog.

  7. Kevin Kehres says

    @6…good catch. That’s gotta be 6 months along (or a pillow of the same girth).

  8. L.Long says

    I’ve heard it said that the quickest way to get abortions of all type totally legal is to have men get unwanted pregnancies. It it could happen, those religious women haters would not waste a second pointing out all the parts of the OT were abortions were OK by gawd.
    I have NEVER heard a good argument against abortion yet by secular bigots or religious bigots.
    One thing I have noticed about the more well off bigots is that they don’t mind making rules against the not so well off women because they have the money and time to go to where their abortion can be gotten; not only bigots but hypocrites as well.

  9. ema says

    It’s disappointing to see a group that advocates against a safe and effective medical procedure, one that significantly decreases a woman’s morbidity/mortality, represented at atheist gatherings.

  10. Hj Hornbeck says

    Aww, a fresh tweet from AAcon claims Secular Pro-Life doesn’t have a table this year. Wimps.

  11. machintelligence says

    It has the smell of a false flag operation.

    Oh. And L.Long. here is a quote:

    Florynce Kennedy, author of Abortion Rap defined the situation with her usual clarity: “If men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament.”

  12. atheistblog says

    I just despise these fetus obsessive christian culture. Christian culture belongs to medieval period not modern era.
    These pro-life christian culture doesn’t stop with US or west, they try to spread their corrupted values around the world. Odious Christian culture should be despised.

  13. freethinkinfranklin says

    dear sirs.. please please please expose these masters of woo for what they are…
    the woo-master writes : Atheists speechless! They can’t explain THIS…

    Dear Reader,

    I’d love to see an atheist try to explain THIS.

    It’s a video about a recent discovery made by biblical researchers in Maryland. While investigating a certain New Testament passage, they found something they never expected…

    A mysterious healing message within ancient scripture.

    It appears to contain a secret for defeating one of our worst diseases… and the science behind it has been verified by one of America’s top doctors!

    Watch it here — you may never look at the Bible the same way again.

    To Healing Miracles,

    Brian Chambers
    Publisher, Health Revelations

    then includes this link to his woo-video:
    http://www.healthrevelations.net/HTML5/Encode_New/?pco=LHRVQ429&efo=HRV140219A

Trackbacks