Whose Hands are Bloody Now?

Dr. George Tiller, right, accepts an award

Anti-abortion extremists (is there another kind?) seem confused about who the victim is in the murder of Dr. George Tiller during a Wichita church service. Despite a years-long coordinated campaign of threats, harassment and incitement of violence against the family planning physician, their main concern is that they will face a backlash from sensible people. Whoops. Should of thought of that a little sooner.

From a transcript of the Bill O’Reilly show from June, 2007 in which Dr. Tiller was ambushed and goaded while attempting to get in his car:

Bill O’Reilly in 2007: “If the state of Kansas doesn’t stop this man, then anybody who prevents that from happening has blood on their hands”


PORTER BARRY, “FACTOR” PRODUCER: Why are you one of the only doctors who does these kind of abortions?

TILLER: Nice day isn’t it?

BARRY: They call you Tiller, the baby Killer. Is that appropriate? .

TILLER: I’m think I’m going to get in my car and go to work.

BARRY: Dr. Tiller, don’t you think…

TILLER: Hi, is this 911? This is Dr. George Tiller. I am at Edgemoore and Harry at QuickTrip. I’m being accosted by the people from O’Reilly. Yes, and they are preventing me from getting in my car and leaving.

BARRY: You can get in your car and go, Dr. Tiller.


Bill O’Reilly, later in that same broadcast:

O’REILLY: Yes, I think we all know what this is. And if the state of Kansas doesn’t stop this man, then anybody who prevents that from happening has blood on their hands as the governor does right now, Governor [Kathleen] Sebelius.

Today, the leading lights of this paternalistic, extremist movement are worried they will held accountable.

While many anti-abortion leaders swiftly issued statements condemning the shooting, their expressions of dismay were not echoed by Randall Terry, a veteran anti-abortion activist whose protests have often targeted Tiller.

“George Tiller was a mass murderer and we cannot stop saying that,” Terry said. “He was an evil man — his hands were covered with blood.”

Terry said he was now concerned that the Obama administration “will use Tiller’s killing to intimidate pro-lifers into surrendering our most effective rhetoric and actions.”

Anti-abortion zealot Rev. Patrick Mahoney shared this concern.

“I’d hope they wouldn’t try to broad-brush the entire pro-life movement as some sort of extremist movement because of what happened in Wichita,” Mahoney said. “That’s really important — don’t use this personal loss for a political gain.”

That’s really important to who, Mahoney? I bet it’s not important in the least to Dr. Tiller’s family and friends.

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