The cracks begin to show

There are members of Brighton’s Jubilee Church who disagree with at  least  some of the actions and words of Abort67 members.  I have personally been contacted by a member of the church,  privately by email, who identifies him or her self in exactly this way. In addition, on the steps of Worthing Council last week, I and others from our group encountered several church members who  expressed disquiet about the practice of protesting outside abortion clinics, and some of the propaganda being spun to women there.

The main source of this disquiet seems to be that Abort67 is telling women that abortion causes cancer, or that it might cause cancer. This was documented on video recently by The Guardian. When pressed, Andrew Stephenson, leader of Abort67, goes quiet, though he is on record as saying that the evidence of cancer-related abortion has not been given a sufficient airing. He said this in relation to a story concerning a member of SPUC being invited into a school to say that abortion causes cancer, despite the absence of any link. Aware that he might lose support within his own community, he seems reluctant to discuss the issue.

Church members are also concerned that abortion clinics are not ‘appropriate’ places to demonstrate, whether it is legal to do so or not, or whether the demonstrations are being conducted legally or not (and this is in doubt in the light of ongoing court cases).  Just because you disagree with abortion, does it mean you have to protest outside clinics?

I suspect that most Jubilee Church members do support A67 and their current campaign. But now, at least some of them are beginning to question this support. My guess is that the more we expose the worst of their misdeeds, the more difficult it will be for them to maintain this support among church members. Our investigation teams are on the case, and evidence is emerging from the murkiest of quarters. Watch this space.



3 thoughts on “The cracks begin to show

  1. says:

    I’m not a pro-abortionist. Just so you know. But I accept the right to choose, and I dread to think what would happen otherwise. Next time you have a rally and need some support in Worthing, let me know.

  2. […] we get into the nitty gritty it is worth pointing out that Brighton Pro-Choice have put up on their blog a post indicating that they have been contacted by individual members of […]

  3. rochereau says:

    I was one of those passing through the ‘picket line’ to enter the church service on 15th April, not as a church member but a guest there , and had the opportunity to meet a number of church members, with some of whom I have had close links all my life.

    I quite admire your approach in this blog, partisan as it is, without being of the pro- or anti- persuasion myself. But I think it would be misleading to suggest that the rallying against the Church is causing cracks to appear in its loyalty to an anti-abortion line. I think those doubts were there from the start. Church members are keen to do good works and some of them think that “speaking up for the unborn child” is one of those good works, i.e. what God wants. Others feel that the Church has no business upsetting and dividing the community. Most, I feel, want nothing to do with Abort67, but rather enjoy the sense of mild persecution, the faint whiff of martyrdom that you provided for them in demonstrating outside the school. There are other repercussions too. I was saddened to see that the Socialist Worker Online has taken up your cause and distorted it to their own ends.

    It seems to me that there is no place for politicising abortion in this way. Abortion is a private matter, distressing to the woman involved, but one which takes place in a framework of law. Any activism ought to refrain from causing greater distress. Abort67 are in the wrong of course, but counter-demonstrations in my view don’t help. They harden positions and oversimplify the personal dilemma of those involved to the slogans of “Pro-life”, “Pro-Choice”, and make the whole thing into a war-game or political football, as in America.

    It doesn’t help that the Jubilee Church “brand” seems to have come from America in the first place. But it would be better to talk quietly with Abort67, whilst exploring legal routes to prevent their harassment of women at the clinic.

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