Why does the city of Charlotte hate women?

Oh, look. It’s a row of scrota marching to demand the right to fill your uterus.

Over a thousand sanctimonious assholes marched around an abortion clinic in Charlotte, North Carolina, shouting and waving signs and doing their best to intimidate and suppress women’s access to health care. Despite the noisy zealots, though, the clinic remained open.

Clinic staff considered it a victory that it remained open despite the thousands of anti-choice activists, the large police presence, the large sound systems not just at the clinic but also a quarter of a mile up the drive, and the buses shuttling LLC attendees from parking lots to the rally site and back again. But there is little doubt that as many as 20 patients were unable to access an abortion that day simply because they were too confused, too overwhelmed, or too scared to navigate the sea of barricades, officers, and teal-shirted anti-abortion activists—even if those activists were primarily doing nothing but silently walking and praying.

“We have no-shows and drive-bys that happen on a normal day, with 10 to 15 protesters,” said Anders, the clinic escort organizer. “They circle around a few times and drive away, and I’m sure it was a patient who didn’t want to come in, who was intimidated and didn’t want to talk to these street preachers. Today, I can’t imagine.”

“Access is being impeded by groups who come down these small side streets and swarm these clinics, putting them under siege, which blocks access for patients and also confuses patients who don’t know if that clinic is open,” said Jen Ferris, Progress North Carolina, a progressive liberal policies action group out of Raleigh that is working with the clinic. “People should be able to access clinics without fear of harassment.”

Can we get something clear here? This is not free speech. It’s abusing the right to peaceably assemble to instead blockade and impede someone else’s rights. And a big part of the problem is the goddamn city of Charlotte, which refuses to recognize the tyrannical character of the shrieking protesters’ transparent assault on the liberty of others.

Ferris suggests that one thing the city should do to ensure patients don’t face similar situations is to stop issuing parade permits like the one it issued today. “Today they gave a permit for 5,000 people to come down this small street,” she said. “You can see traffic is backing up. They could stop issuing sound permits. You can hear this inside the clinic and there is no reason a patient needs to hear religion shouted at them while they sit inside a clinic.” Rewire has previously reported on noise levels outside of the clinic and the inadequate response of city officials in addressing them.

The city of Charlotte is aiding and abetting anti-woman offenses against humanity. I guess that’s fine with the city administration, so clearly, they need to go.


  1. says

    What is so hard to understand for these people: your freedom ends where you impede another’s freedom? If you’re stopping others from exercising their rights then you’re doing it wrong — and you might be the next to suffer from having your rights squashed by self-righteous bullies.

  2. whywhywhy says


    What is so hard to understand for these people

    They have god on their side. They don’t come from a humanism based perspective where each individual in a society should be treated equally.

  3. birgerjohansson says

    Are these people affiliated with the Orange Order of Northern Ireland? They also like big marches and a bit of intimidation, apart from the orange garb.

  4. birgerjohansson says

    Plural of scrotum: a row of scrota.
    Not “a murder of scrota”? Blob of scrota? Myself, I would pick “agglomerate of…”

  5. birgerjohansson says

    “Teal-shirted”. Hmm…smart. Black and brown are already taken, they understand the importance of a fresh brand.

  6. unregardless says

    This is absolutely a free speech issue. If the city refused to issue permits based on the applicant they would be sued — they would loose — and the taxpayers would be out the cost.

  7. says

    unregardless @8

    Illogical. If the city is never allowed to refuse permits, then why do these permits exist? Permits are granting permission, and it is nonsense to suppose the body issuing permits can never choose not to.

    Therefore the city must have some leeway to decide when it would have a reasonable interest in denying a permit, and it would be exceedingly strange if interfering with the lawful operation of a service (driving clients away, making being in the location unpleasant) is not a very valid reason to deny one.

  8. Mark Jacobson says

    @3 birgerjohansson

    I don’t think the people in orange are part of the anti-choice protest, they’re there to make access to the clinic.

  9. Ogvorbis: Swimming without a parachute. says

    Mark Jacobson @10:

    I don’t think the people in orange are part of the anti-choice protest, they’re there to make access to the clinic.

    Really? You mean the people (in the top photo) wearing black shirts that read “LOVE LIFE”? Are you sure?

  10. dhabecker says

    If they want to prevent abortions, these (fill in the blank) should take a lesson from the great wizard; grab them by the pussy and don’t let go till term. What a sick world we’re building.

  11. Mark Jacobson says

    @11 Ogvorbis: Swimming without a parachute.

    With the name tags and the orange (which escort volunteers often wear) and the making a human chain in front of the other protesters I thought I knew, but “LOVE LIFE Charlotte” is an anti-abortion organization. Damn, as if it wasn’t already confusing and stressful enough for people trying to access the clinic.

    I can’t imagine what it would be like to need an abortion, go to a place like this and not even trust my own judgement about who is there to help me or hurt me.

  12. anbheal says

    @7 Marcus Ranum, yeah, I was thinking about a “Sack of Scrota”, but then I decided that a Castratum of Scrota might be better.

    Of course a Premature Ejaculatum of Scrota is in play. An Erectile Dysfunctiom of Scrota. A 40-Year-Old-Virginium of Scrota.

    Oh I’m having fun now. A Mom’s Basement of Scrota. A Couldn’t Qualify For A GED of Scrota. A Neckbeard of Scrota. A Girlfriendless 4Chan of Scrota. An I’ll-Never-Have-The-Opportunity-To-Impregnate-A-Woman of Scrota.

  13. anchor says

    @#2 whywhywhy: “They have God on their side”

    Not quite. They want you to know that they ARE God.

    That’s precisely the whole point of professing a ‘belief’ in that thing. Religion has always – ALWAYS – been about wielding power and control over others in order to gain some advantage. It’s not about belief in God. It’s about PLAYING God. The humble profession of belief is just a deceptive front.

  14. efogoto says

    I read the last shirt on the right as “LOVE LIFE harlot”. Seemed like something they’d wear.

  15. notruescott says

    I wonder whether one might acquire a permit to have a thousand people with bullhorns “parade” around a local church?

  16. Derek Vandivere says

    #9 / abbeycadabra; #17 / notruescott:

    I assume the permit process is also to make sure the municipality knows about the protest, can route around it, and so forth. The leeway they have would be the first amendment – and I’m pretty sure this would legally fall under free speech. Morally, of course, it’s fairly repugnant. But, the Supreme Court ruled in McCullen v. Coakley that even a 35 foot protest buffer zone around clinics that Massachusetts put in place violated the first amendment.

    It does make me think about what I think about acceptable levels of protest. I accept that the protesters sincerely believe in what they’re protesting (again, they’re wrong, but they’re sincerely wrong), as are protestors who shut down airports for Trump’s travel ban or BLM activists who block highways. And I think effective protests need to be disruptive. I’m not sure if it’s that they’re protesting where those health services are provided (but then, say, protesting the gun show loophole at a gun show would be fine), or if it’s the power imbalance (mostly men protesting against women, with the implied but not explicit threat of violence). It’s got to be more than I’m right and they’re wrong, though. Hm.

  17. A. Noyd says

    It’s got to be more than I’m right and they’re wrong, though.

    Fuck your equivocation. Forced-birther “protests” disrupt private citizens’ access to healthcare and, in doing so, puts those citizens’ health and lives in danger. I don’t care if that pack of corrupt turd-garglers on the Supreme Court decided that the right for some ignorant asshole to scream directly in my face was more important than my right to access healthcare at my own discretion; their decision was both wrong and evil.

    Furthermore, the big difference that’s apparently gone sailing over your head is that it’s one thing to protest for equal rights or the protection of people, and another to protest to keep people disenfranchised. It’s trickier to make that distinction at the level of government, sure, but it’s still there.

    Now if forced-birthers want to pretend that they’re protesting to protect the lives of those poor, innocent fetuses, fine. But then lawmakers and courts should draw on facts and point out that forced-birther interference at family planning clinics actually increases abortion rates, and thus limiting their protests would merely be helping them achieve their stated goal.

  18. methuseus says

    @Derek Vandivere:

    The leeway they have would be the first amendment – and I’m pretty sure this would legally fall under free speech.

    How is it free speech for them to have loudspeakers a block or more away that are so loud that it disrupts the ability of them to do business in the clinic because they physically have trouble with the sound level? If I can’t hear someone asking me questions at a clinic, am I going to stay there to get the service I need? No, not even if it’s life threatening.

  19. Derek Vandivere says

    #19 / Noyd,

    Well, if you’re going to insult me, I’ll point out that you’re a dope and missed my point, which was the more abstract point of figuring out how to judge what an ethically acceptable (as opposed to legally) level of disturbance is, given that this protest definitely wasn’t.

    #21 / methuseus

    Yeah, I agree – it feels wrong (sort of like the Heller vs. DC judgement), but that’s what the Court decided.

  20. A. Noyd says

    Derek Vandivere (#22)
    You’re the one privileging sincerity of belief in order to put protests against civil rights violations, such as the travel ban and racist police violence, on the same level as demands for more civil rights violations, then pretending there’s some hard question to be answered about how they’re different.

    It’s not actually hard (or abstract, for that matter) if you don’t make false equivalences like that.