The anti-abortion activists who work the sidewalks and "pregnancy help centers" across the street from or adjacent to women's clinics are known for using their proximity to make contact with women and girls seeking abortions to try and talk them out of their choices. They justify any tactic that they try, no matter how personal, vicious or unwanted, as a positive because they are trying to save a fetus, and the mother and her emotional or physical well-being is of less importance.
Even when one of those "mothers" is just a child herself.
Most people would say praying to end abortion is harmless. But, [Terry] Palmquist [of The Life House Pregnancy Help Center] has other tactics as well. This week, she confronted a 14-year-old girl entering the clinic about her decision to abort her fetus. They exchanged phone numbers and talked about options.
Out of fear the teen wanted to stay anonymous, but over the phone had this to say. "I was thinking that I would be giving up my childhood and wouldn't be able to finish school cause I'd have a baby to watch, and I wouldn't be able to afford a baby and go to school at the same time."
But, while the young girl was sitting in the clinic, Palmquist sent her a text message and said "if you go through with this, we've named your baby Britney."
Ultimately the abortion took place, and Palmquist displayed the name on a pink cross. "I don't want to be overly hard on the mom, but if we believe that abortion is killing a baby it's no different than killing a baby in your arms, said Palmquist."
17 News asked, how do you defend this isn't a cruel thing to do to someone? "I don't think it's cruel because I think the sooner you deal with it the easier it is in the healing," says Palmquist.
The abortion was finished. There was nothing that the Palmquist could have done afterwards to bring back the fetus. And the girl was barely in her teens. But it was important for Palmquist to make sure that the girl was as emotionally hurt as possible once it was over.
Anti-choice activists like to say that abortion causes depression, grief and anxiety, but how much of that is being caused by the activists themselves?