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Operation Rescue

August 20, 1989

On Saturday, Aug. 12, approximately 80 members of the anti-abortion storm troopers who call themselves "Operation Rescue" descended upon the Wilshire Blvd. medical building that houses the Los Angeles Feminist Women's Health Center, blockading the entire building for several hours, preventing entry by all of the professionals who work in the building as well as their unsuspecting clients.

That tactic, of course, is nothing new. These days, we see coverage of similar blockades so often that we have become inured to the toll they take on the lives of individuals.

But this time, Operation Rescue did more than delay the delivery of needed medical care. Their tactics directly endangered the lives of the hundreds of people who work in this building and the clients who come here for treatment. Because they outnumbered clinic escorts and police, they were able to run unrestrained through the building, tripping fire alarms and attempting to force their way into our clinic. But the most shocking thing was that they maliciously disabled the fire hoses on the floor on which our clinic is housed.

It's time that the leaders of this movement answered a few hard questions. Like, for a start, what does "pro-life" really mean to the individuals who dismantled the fire suppression equipment on an entire floor of a busy medical office building?

SHIREEN MILES

Associate Director

Feminist Women's Health Centers

Los Angeles

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