Ann Coulter Justifies The Tiller Assasination
Frederick Clarkson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Thu Jun 25, 2009 at 03:02:50 PM EST
Ann Coulter is skilled at saying what she really believes while building in a certain plausible deniability, and that is what she has repeatedly done in justifying the assassination of abortion providers. But the beauty of her rhetorical beast is that her meaning ultimately, is always clear. We will get to her latest provocation in a moment, but first a little context.

She has a record of publicly justifying the assassination of abortion providers. Last year, she did this at least twice. Speaking at a national religious right political conference in Florida, she declared that she can "understand" the assassination of doctors who perform legal abortions. In demagogic fashion, Coulter first presented the shocking view -- and then wink, wink -- said she didn't really mean it; but in doing so, still held fast to the argument that leaders of the underground Army of God have used for years to justify the murder of abortion providers -- which she termed "a procedure with a rifle."  

Here is what she said and how she said it:    


"Those few abortionists were shot, or, depending on your point of view, had a procedure with a rifle performed on them. I'm not justifying it, but I do understand how it happened.... The number of deaths attributed to Roe v. Wade about 40 million aborted babies and seven abortion clinic workers; 40 million to seven is also a pretty good measure of how the political debate is going."

(I wrote about this at the time, for those who want to get into this in detail, and the sourcing for the quotes can be found there. The above was originally reported by journalist Adele Stan.)

Speaking at the 2008 Values Voters Summit, a national religious right political conference in Washington, DC sponsored by, the Family Research Council and other top religious right groups, she stated that doctors were being murdered -- because the courts have taken democracy away, by which she meant that the Casey decision did not sufficiently reduce the number of abortions, which she says drove people to violence.


For two decades after Roe, no abortion clinic doctors were killed. But immediately after Planned Parenthood v. Casey, after working within the system did not work, produced no results... for the first time an abortion doctor was killed. A few more abortion clinic workers were killed in the next few years. I'm not justifying it, but I understand when you take democracy away from people, some of them will react violently. The total number of deaths attributable to Roe were seven abortion clinic workers and 40 million unborn babies

She issued her latest justification for murder in response to the Tiller assassination, in her recent nationally syndicated column. Her column is  based at the conservative weekly Human Events, where she is "Legal Correspondent." (Yes, this is a lawyer, engaging in thinly veiled justifications for major crimes.) It is distributed to newspapers by the Universal Press Syndicate.

Borrowing from and inverting some prochoice language she writes:

I wouldn't kill an abortionist myself, but I wouldn't want to impose my moral values on others. No one is for shooting abortionists. But how will criminalizing men making difficult, often tragic, decisions be an effective means of achieving the goal of reducing the shootings of abortionists?

Following the moral precepts of liberals, I believe the correct position is: If you don't believe in shooting abortionists, then don't shoot one.

Then, appearing on The O'Reilly Factor, as reported by Politics Daily, she repeated her argument:


"I don't really like to think of it as a murder. It was terminating Tiller in the 203rd trimester."

When pressed by O'Reilly on this statement, Coulter replied,

    "I am personally opposed to shooting abortionists, but I don't want to impose my moral values on others."

So that's four times in the past year and a half that she has coyly or not so coyly justified political assassination: Before prominent religious right audiences; in a nationally syndicated column, and on national television.

I think this is an extraordinary opportunity for the common grounders (suchas the ones I discussed here) to demonstrate their commitment to rancor reduction in the abortion debate. In this instance, to acknowledge and denounce the inflammatory rhetoric of a major political pundit and instigator of the climate of threats, hate and fear that have contributed to the three decade crime wave against abortion providers, staff, and patients.

Could they make a study of and take action against Ann Coulter and her enablers such as Human Events, the Universal Press Syndicate, and for that matter Bill O'Reilly and Fox News? Or perhaps they can explain why they should turn a blind eye to all this?

that Ms. Coulter doesn't want to impose her morals on me.  I'm not inclined to take morality lessons from someone who defends the Council of Conservative Citizens.  Apparently race bigotry does not make her list of moral absolutes.  She looks good in a sleeveless shirt, though, and that counts for something.

by brother maynard on Fri Jun 26, 2009 at 01:53:19 AM EST

I actually looked at the Council of Conservative Citizens website (something I had been reluctant to do until now...this kind of stuff really gets to me).  If the articles on the home page are not enough evidence that the Council promotes white supremacist ideology, you would think Ms. Coulter would have noticed the link to, which links to Stormfront.

From the CofCC Statement of Principles:

"We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called "affirmative action" and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races."

by brother maynard on Wed Jul 01, 2009 at 02:33:24 AM EST

what they'd do to someone like me- with Native American, African American (although I can't prove it yet), and some white ancestors.

Something that keeps getting reinforced is the connection between conservatism and bigotry.  Every conservative person I've met so far ended up spewing some sort of bigotry.  It might be racist, it might be religious, or it might be sexual, and it might not come out for years- but they eventually spew it.

The worst examples were the conservatives who said that they didn't believe in racism and thought everyone was/should be treated the same (and were vehemently conservative).  In those cases (all business owners), when they let their guard down you learned that they were more bigoted and racist than the avowed and open ones.  They actually (in a way) helped me- by driving me away from conservative thinking and towards liberalism.  Their extreme attitudes helped me later to analyze my own beliefs- and as I realize I'd also been a bigot in ways- I changed and "repented" of my bigotry.

by ArchaeoBob on Wed Jul 01, 2009 at 01:08:24 PM EST

Every time Ann Coulter opens her mouth I can smell the garbage. As an 80 year old retired US Army Intelligence Officer with 43 years of Army service, I am normally a polite, disciplined and a friendly person. But lets' face it, there are times when it is necessary to call a "spade a spade." During my long life I encountered several Ann Coulters and had absolutely no problems dealing with them. I just educated them - with the aid of a baseball bat.

by Bonatti on Fri Jun 26, 2009 at 04:26:51 AM EST
It is certainly counter to the spirit and intention of this site; and has no place in the civil disourse we seek to promote.

Ann Coulter is a vile and dangerous  demagogue who should not be given a place in national discourse to advocate or justify criminal acts. Let's focus attention on that rather than advocating or justifying other criminal acts.

by Frederick Clarkson on Mon Jun 29, 2009 at 06:59:19 PM EST

Then you ruined your position. I knew someone who got worked over by a baseball bat. For such an experienced person you fail. Anne Coulter would be right in using your statement, in context, as yet another show of what "liberals" really are. Shame on you for that. They don't need real ammunition when they are so good at concocting their own, don't they? What we need are intelligent, skilled people who could deconstruct and turn her warped arguments straight and skewer her with them. Now that would be good. I have seen it. Just see YouTube between her an Al Franken who destroyers her with her own words, not force of violence. Maybe at 80 you can still learn something good.

by Nightgaunt on Sun Aug 23, 2009 at 04:34:44 PM EST

WWW Talk To Action

Freedom vs. Fear: Restricting Religious Liberty Isn't The Answer To Terrorism
Last week, a community meeting was held in Spotsylvania County, Va., to discuss plans by a group of Muslims who want to relocate and......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
Christian Right Electoral Hegemony, Rising in the States
This is a revised, updated and retitled post I did on the long term trend of significant political progress of the Christian Right and......
By Frederick Clarkson (5 comments)
Who's Been Naughty, Who's Been Nice?: The AFA Explains It All For You
If you're like me, you've been sitting around anxiously awaiting the release of the American Family Association's "Naughty or Nice" list of retailers for......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
U.S. Department Of Judeo-Christian Values?: Kasich Proposes New Religious Propaganda Arm
According to some polls, the leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination is Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who believes that ancient Egyptians built......
By Rob Boston (5 comments)
Scripture Stories: Religious Right Claims About The `Aitken Bible' Don't Hold Up
Tomorrow several conservative members of the U.S. House of Representatives plan to hold a public reading of the Aitken Bible on the East Front......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
The Tallest Statue in the Nation of an Individual
Many a day I drove on I 45 past the statue of Sam Houston.  The monument to the statesman is the largest in the......
By wilkyjr (1 comment)
Honoring Everyone Who Served: A Veterans Day Reflection
In 1952, a private group sought permission from government officials to erect a large cross atop Mt. Soledad near San Diego. They did it......
By Rob Boston (5 comments)
One Million Maniacs?: AFA Attacks Magazine For Highlighting Family Headed By Same-Sex Couple
I have a daughter named Claire who is 21 years old and working her first job in journalism since graduating from college. I'm awfully......
By Rob Boston (0 comments)
What Catholic Neo-Confederates Don't Want You To Know About Secession
During the summer of 2013 I wrote several posts about Catholic Neo-Confederates. My purpose was to explain the activities of libertarians such as Tom......
By Frank Cocozzelli (10 comments)
Sex And Common Sense: Texas Public School Reconsiders `Chastity' Speaker
A self-appointed expert on sex and relationships won't speak at an El Paso, Texas, high school - for now.Jason Evert runs an outfit called......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
Two Trials that Impacted American Religion
Silent movie, Birth of a Nation, became the first blockbuster screen phenomena.  Civil Rights groups deplored the production and sought to ban it.  It......
By wilkyjr (3 comments)
The Francis Trajectory.
The recent dust-up over the meeting between Pope Francis and culture warrior Kim Davis has caused the Pontiff's stock to fall somewhat among liberals.......
By Frank Cocozzelli (11 comments)
Taking Care Of Business: Religious Right Group Plans `Religious Liberty' Ratings For Companies
My inbox this morning contained a press release from the American Family Association (AFA). The Tupelo, Miss.-based Religious Right group has exciting news: It......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
Quest for Utopia
Surfing through old videos on youtube I found some interesting tapes of H. L. Hunt.  Certainly one of the original founders of the modern......
By wilkyjr (6 comments)
The Sour Grapes Of Wrath: Tenn. County Politician Seeks To Stave Off God's Vengeance
It has become a cliché to say that you spotted an article online that was so strange you first assumed it was from The......
By Rob Boston (5 comments)

Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (2 comments)
Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (1 comment)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (0 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (2 comments)
Evangelicals Seduced By Ayn Rand Worship Crypto-Satanism, Suggest Scholars
[update: also see my closely related stories, "Crypto-Cultists" and "Cranks": The Video Paul Ryan Hoped Would Go Away, and The Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand/Satanism Connection Made Simple] "I give people Ayn Rand with trappings" -......
Bruce Wilson (10 comments)
Ted Cruz Anointed By Pastor Who Says Jesus Opposed Minimum Wage, and Constitution Based on the Bible
In the video below, from a July 19-20th, 2013 pastor's rally at a Marriott Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa, Tea Party potentate Ted Cruz is blessed by religious right leader David Barton, who claims......
Bruce Wilson (1 comment)
Galt and God: Ayn Randians and Christian Rightists Expand Ties
Ayn Rand's followers find themselves sharing a lot of common ground with the Christian Right these days. The Tea Party, with its stress on righteous liberty and a robust form of capitalism, has been......
JSanford (2 comments)
Witchhunts in Africa and the U.S.A.
Nigerian human rights activist Leo Igwe has recently written at least two blog posts about how some African Pentecostal churches are sending missionaries to Europe and the U.S.A. in an attempt to "re-evangelize the......
Diane Vera (2 comments)
Charles Taze Russell and John Hagee
No doubt exists that Texas mega-church Pastor John Hagee would be loathe to be associated with the theology of Pastor C.T. Russell (wrongly credited with founding the Jehovah's Witnesses) but their theological orbits, while......
COinMS (0 comments)
A death among the common people ... imagination.
Or maybe my title would better fit as “Laws, Books, where to find, and the people who trust them.”What a society we've become!The wise ones tell us over and over how the more things......
Arthur Ruger (0 comments)
Deconstructing the Dominionists, Part VI
This is part 6 of a series by guest front pager Mahanoy, originally dated November 15, 2007 which I had to delete and repost for technical reasons. It is referred to in this post,......
Frederick Clarkson (2 comments)
Republican infighting in Mississippi
After a bruising GOP runoff election for U.S. Senator, current MS Senator Thad Cochran has retained his position and will face Travis Childers (Democrat) in the next senate election. The MS GOP is fractured......
COinMS (3 comments)
America's Most Convenient Bank® refuses to serve Christians
Representatives of a well known faith-based charitable organization were refused a New Jersey bank’s notarization service by an atheist employee. After inquiring about the nature of the non-profit organization and the documents requiring......
Jody Lane (4 comments)
John Benefiel takes credit for GOP takeover of Oklahoma
Many of you know that Oklahoma has turned an unrecognizable shade of red in recent years.  Yesterday, one of the leading members of the New Apostolic Reformation all but declared that he was responsible......
Christian Dem in NC (2 comments)
John Benefiel thinks America is under curse because Egyptians dedicated North America to Baal
You may remember that Rick Perry put together his "Response" prayer rallies with the help of a slew of NAR figures.  One of them was John Benefiel, an Oklahoma City-based "apostle."  He heads up......
Christian Dem in NC (5 comments)

More Diaries...

All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.