[Casting the First Stone: Anti-abortion Demonstration]

Footage taken at an anti-abortion demonstration for the documentary Casting the First Stone, directed by Julie Gustafson. Includes an interview with Frances Sheehan and a press conference with Randall Terry.

00:23Copy video clip URL Demonstrators sing “Glory Glory Hallelujah” as they sit outside of the Suburban Women’s Clinic in Paoli, PA, blocking the entrance. The police arrive.

02:27Copy video clip URL Police begin arresting demonstrators for criminal trespassing, removing them one by one on stretchers. The other demonstrators remain seated and continue singing hymns.

10:16Copy video clip URL Frances Sheehan, director of the National Abortion Rights Action League, PA, speaks to journalists about the protest and about her organization’s “Pledge-A-Picket” campaign that ties donations from supporters to the attendance at anti-abortion protests. She observes that the protest was significantly smaller than expected. The crowd starts to disperse behind her. 

11:57Copy video clip URL Sheehan describes her reaction to the demonstrator preventing women from accessing care as “rage.” Her colleague points out that the demonstration prohibits women from doing the thing that they want to do. Sheehan expresses disdain for the protestors’ certainty in a complicated.

13:42Copy video clip URL Sheehan explains that she’s also present to show solidarity with the women who need care and with the staff at the clinic who provide them with that care.

14:42Copy video clip URL Sheehan discusses the importance of counseling to abortion clinics, as it is in a clinic’s  best interest to ensure that any woman receiving an abortion is certain that she wants one and that she is making the right decision for her. 

15:50Copy video clip URL Sheehan discusses the role religion plays in affecting a woman’s decision to obtain an abortion.

17:36Copy video clip URL Sheehan observes that protestors have very rigid, antiquated conceptions of gender roles, and that anti-abortion movement has arisen in part in response to those roles becoming less clear cut. 

18:27Copy video clip URL The remaining protestors clap as a man is carried on a stretcher to a bus. A counter-protestor notes that a number of the protestors already had warrants out for their arrest. 

19:23Copy video clip URL Anti-abortion activist Randall Terry speaks at an impromptu press conference outside of the clinic about his movement’s momentum and about the police charging demonstrators with misdemeanors, which he considers unjust. He accuses the local police captain of having a pro-abortion bias.

 

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