Help defend abortion access in Charlotte

Guest Commentary

The first time I stood outside of an abortion clinic was in the summer of 2010. Activists like me were spending the week defending a clinic in Charlotte that had been targeted for a national event by a rowdy anti-choice group called Operation Save America (OSA). The first time I saw these protestors harass people driving into the clinic and women as they walked to the door, it was completely overwhelming. After spending the week with other amazing people countering hate with supportive signs, I knew that I would always want to defend the rights of women seeking abortions and those that work to help them.

Two years later, we are again forced to defend the right to abortion access in Charlotte. OSA has announced its second mass protest in Charlotte this July 21-28, calling the event “The King is Coming to the Queen City.” We anticipate that, like last time, OSA will call on masses of protestors to harass women and clinic staff that week. (Their website states that this event is also partly “in preparation for the DNC,” so we expect to be dealing with the similar clinic harassment when the Democratic National Convention meets in Charlotte this Sept. 4-6.)

OSA is led by Flip Benham, who was convicted of criminal stalking of abortion providers in November 2010. These are not just “nice church folk” with religious convictions; these people use violent and intrusive behavior (like WANTED posters) to intimidate abortion providers, staff, and patients.

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We are hoping to call on our amazing student and community activists in the Charlotte area and beyond to come out between July 21-July 28th and help defend these clinics. We need our community to show their support by maintaining a physical presence and holding pro-choice signs outside of the clinic with us during that week. The University of North Carolina- Charlotte Feminist Union (a Feminist Majority Foundation affiliate) has been defending these clinics for a while, and we need you to join them!

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Please spread the word that we are calling for all pro-choice folk to help defend Charlotte clinics. Come one day out of the week or the whole week; whatever you can do to help! We will also be calling on people to do other things like outreach and legal observation. We have principles that you will be briefed on and expected to adhere to (like non-violence and non-engagement) if you decide to come out. If you are interested, have questions, or want more information, please email us at

charlotteclinicdefenders@gmail.com.

We want to show the OSA and the city of Charlotte that we will stand up for women’s healthcare and their right to access abortion. Please join us to protect abortion access and show the community that we will not stand back and let our rights be taken away.

See you in Charlotte! : :

— This commentary originally published

at feministcampus.org and is reprinted

with permission.

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2 Replies to “Help defend abortion access in Charlotte”

  1. Dear Sarah:

    First, the allegations against Rev Flip Benham have not been proven and are as bogus and fradulent as a two dollar bill. Second, you state that OSA uses “violent and intrusive behavior”? Can you provide any evidence whatsoever, or is this just scare tactic to stir up your pro-abortion followers. Yes, OSA shows graphic photographs of murdered and dismembered babies. This is not intrusive behavior, but rather the plain truth.

    I must compliment you for one thing however, your training in non-violent and non-engagement behavior. I hope you keep to the plan because hardly a day goes by that a pro-lifer is assaulted somewhere in America.

  2. Preacher the truth July 21, 2012 at 11:10 pm

    Your article is full of lies, slander and libel. OSA is not a violent group, and Benham stalked NO ONE, its a false charge on appeal based on lying police, baby-murderers, and a stupidly vague law written in such a way it could “convict” anyone of stalking! All people like you have is LIES. Its the only way to “defend” your sin and wickedness. YOU SUPPORT CHILD ABUSE–THE ULTIMATE FORM OF CHILD ABUSE. You feel “compelled” to do so because you are a slave of the Devil, who has outwitted you and has you doing his bidding, while you think you do your own. The wrath of God shall surely punish such insolent murderers and perverts, unless you repent and cry to the Saviour Jesus Christ for salvation

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