There has been an increase in anti-life extremism in the lead-up to the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v Wade. Jane’s Revenge is one such group that has been involved in firebombing and vandalism around the United States.
Since a draft SCOTUS decision (leaked in early May) to overturn Roe v Wade – the 1973 ruling that made abortion a constitutionally-protected right — pregnancy crisis centres and other pro-life organisations have experienced destructive attacks and vandalism. The attacks are meant to send a message; they are supposed to instil fear.
Jane’s Revenge, a militant pro-abortion group, has been responsible for many such attacks. Shortly following the leaked decision, a Wisconsin Family Action office was firebombed — Jane’s Revenge claimed responsibility for the attack and threatened ‘increasingly extreme tactics’ in future.
Police called the attack an “abortion extremism case involving an arson and graffiti attack of a pro-life advocacy office in Madison”. Following the attack, Jane’s Revenge issued a statement,
“Wisconsin is the first flashpoint, but we are all over the US, and we will issue no further warnings.”
They justified the attack with reference to fringe anti-abortion groups’ similar militant behaviour. While similar anti-abortion activities are worthy of condemnation, the fact that Jane’s Revenge uses such actions as a justification to commit the very same evils is beyond belief.
The group made good on their threat. In late May, a Washington pregnancy crisis centre — Next Step pregnancy — was vandalised. The vandals caused thousands of dollars worth of damage, left threatening messages, and then bolted.
Ongoing Violence and Extremism
In June, the extreme activities intensified.
On 7 June, Buffalo News reported another attack on a pro-life pregnancy centre – CompassCare. The group’s office was firebombed and more threatening graffiti linked the attack to Jane’s Revenge. CompassCare CEO James Harden compared the threats of the extremist group to the German ‘Kristallnacht’, calling it “the pro-abortion ‘Kristallnacht’”.
Just days later, news outlets reported vandalism and threatening messages — like “Jane was here” and “If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either” — in both New York and North Carolina.
On 23 June, pro-life Republican congressman Tim Walberg had his office — and that of a nearby Right to Life group — trashed. Windows and glass were smashed and the place was graffitied by the pro-abortion activists.
In response, Walberg said the following:
“I never shy away from my record as a strong conservative and defender of life. This strong record puts me in the crosshairs from those on the radical left but I will never stand down or compromise my convictions and knowing the people at Jackson Right to Life, this will only strengthen their determination to protect the unborn.”
The Reaction to the Recent SCOTUS Decision
Following the US Supreme Court decision last Friday, Jane’s Revenge has increased its extreme activities.
On 25 June, the news reported a further attack, this time on Blue Ridge Pregnancy Center in Virginia. The Virginian governor decried the attacks.
“There is no room for this in Virginia, breaking the law is unacceptable. This is not how we find common ground.”
On the same day, the Department of Homeland Security warned that violence could happen ‘for weeks’ following the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade.
“We base this assessment on an observed increase in violent incidents across the United States following the unauthorized disclosure in May of a draft majority opinion on the case.”
“Americans’ freedom of speech and right to peacefully protest are fundamental Constitutional rights. Those rights do not extend to violence and other illegal activity,” the Department spokesperson said.
Jane’s Revenge and The “Night of Rage”
When the SCOTUS draft ruling was first released, Jane’s Revenge published a so-called ‘Call to Action Against Patriarchal Supremacy’, arguing that the possibility of Roe v Wade being overturned should “inspire rage in millions of people who can get pregnant”.
“People who can get pregnant”… Presumably, they were referring to women, although it is a little unclear.
“We need the state to feel our full wrath,” the release fumed, “We need them to be afraid of us.”
It proceeded to link gun violence in the US to pro-life causes — what it called “reproductive violence”.
“Whatever form your fury takes, the first step is feeling it… we are asking for you to do what you can to make your anger known.”
The release finished:
“To those who work to oppress us: If abortion isn’t safe, you aren’t either. We are everywhere.”
This level of extremism – on both the left and the right – can only be expected as people put all their hope in political activism. Without a transcendent anchor for their convictions, people are unable to cope with political failure.
More important than temporal political victories are eternal, spiritual souls. Christians should continue to pray for those who are lost, reaching out to them with the Good News of the work and Kingdom of Christ.
Photo: Des Moines Register