NARAL President Ilyse Hogue criticized the press for insufficient coverage of recent arson attacks on Planned Parenthood clinics, saying that the media “need to report these incidents as what they are: domestic terrorism” or they will be giving “extremists the cover to regressively and violently attack women, their access to health care, and the medical professionals who provide it.”
Since the anti-choice Center for Medical Progress has released a series of deceptively-edited videos smearing Planned Parenthood, multiple clinics across the country have been the targets of “terroristic” arson attacks. A Media Matters review found that cable news shows and leading newspapers around the country remained largely silent on the topic.
Hogue released the following statement in response to Media Matters' review:
Make no mistake: we are witnessing acts of domestic terrorism at health care facilities across the country, targeting women who seek medical advice and the doctors who are brave enough to counsel them--in the face of repeated, violent attacks and daily threats. But, instead of treating these incidents as the real and present danger to innocent civilians that they are, Congress is inviting anti-abortion extremists to testify at hearings, the Department of Justice has yet to announce a full investigation, and the news media remains silent. Where is the outrage?
Women can and will continue to make their own decisions about their bodies and their lives, despite murders, bombings, arsons and intimidation by those who will stop at nothing to deny women legal abortion services. We have to remember that just six years a go a doctor was gunned down in the pews of his own church in the name of this extremist movement and against a backdrop of tolerance for the radical views.
The media need to report these incidents as what they are: domestic terrorism. By staying silent or failing to discuss this new wave of attacks on health clinics in the context of anti-abortion extremism, the media is giving extremists the cover to regressively and violently attack women, their access to health care, and the medical professionals who provide it. We call on the DOJ to investigate the recent arsons, showing that our legal system will not tolerate any further assault on women, clinic escorts, security personnel or medical staff, and the news media to hold the government accountable for keeping Americans safe from harm.
NARAL has also launched a petition calling on the Department of Justice to investigate the Planned Parenthood arsons as instances of domestic terrorism.