Saturday, August 2, 2008

Adventures at Planned Parenthood  

Today was yet another Saturday afternoon spent volunteering at Planned Parenthood as a clinic escort and watching old men walk around with giant obnoxious signs while reciting numerous Hail Marys. Some interesting events occurred however, including:

  • One anti-choice protester stood across the street and decided to point at me for a full five minutes. This guy is always here on Saturdays, so I'm used to being pointed at by him. He motioned for me to come over to him, but since I wasn't the least bit inclined to do that, I ignored him. This made him angry, and he started shouting: "Come over here sweetheart!" in a really creepy old man voice that made me think of a kidnapper trying to lure me into the back of his truck with candy. I ignored him again, and he continued to shout angrily at me, though the noise of the traffic drowned him out. But I think he called me an "animal."

  • Another protester came over to me at one point and asked how I felt about euthanasia. I had no desire to discuss my views on assisted suicides with this man, so I didn't answer. He tried to give me a book he had about the subject, but I politely declined.

  • Later, the same man came back to me and asked if I had ever had an abortion. I said, "That's none of your business." He then offered me some literature, which I ended up taking just to get him to go away. After he left, I looked at it and saw that it was a pro-life newsletter. Great. But now I know every single protest they have scheduled for the next couple months, so I can make a plan to drive past a couple of them, blare my horn, and yell "MY BODY MY CHOICE!"

  • A young man drove by, leaned out the window, and yelled "YOU FUCKIN' IDIOTS!" at the protesters. It was tasteless behavior, but I laughed anyway.

  • A couple walked by, looked at the protesters, and the guy said to me, "This should be illegal." I agreed, and he said, "They're all too old to have babies anyway." I laughed, and the girl said, "It's not like they're going to cut us a check for the cost of having a baby." This was a good insight, as earlier in the day, one of the protesters yelled at a girl, "Don't kill your child. Keep it. We can help you." I'm not sure how much they can help with the cost of maternity clothes, additional food, formula, diapers, baby clothes, toys... not to mention the cost of having to take time off from work. Oh, and there's also the emotional stress and physical exhaustion. Will these old men be there to hold my hair back when I have morning sickness, or give the baby milk when it cries at 4AM? I'm thinking no. So don't tell me you're going to "help" me.

All in all, an inevitably tiresome day. But it was all worth it.

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