Some abortion rights advocates have started fabricating mass shootings at abortion clinics.
Anyone who actually looks into the phenomenon of violence against abortion clinic staff, carried out by those who think abortion is wrong, knows that the reality is much smaller than the perception. Such incidents are rare and in severe decline, the facts show. Obviously whether or not abortion is morally permissible is quite independent of incidents like this, but still, some proponents of abortion rights do try to silence the vocal critics of abortion because of such incidents, as I mentioned recently. Unfortunately, however, whether or not the allegations about these incidents are even true is starting to matter less, it seems.
Perhaps noticing the lack of actual widespread violence against people who work at abortion clinics and trying to boost the numbers, or perhaps just trying to link the opponents of abortion to the recent terrible mass shooting in San Bernadino California, or heck, more likely just using somebody else’s tragedy to further your own social and political cause (no, not a crass thing to do at all….), the Facebook group “Exposing Men’s Rights Activism” today shared a tweet from Jamie Kilstein, reading “F**k. Not seeing this on the news cause they are covering another mass shooting. #america.” If I read this correctly, it means “Oh no. The news isn’t covering this mass shooting because they are covering a different one.” Kilstein in turn was sharing a tweet from Houston Feminist: “There has been a shooting in #houston at Clinica Hispana, a women’s health clinic. #hounews.”
The comment added to this by “Exposing men’s rights activists” simply read: “There have been 3 mass shootings today in the USA. One of which took place at a women’s clinic.” Oh my gosh! Recently a disturbed man shot a number of people at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado… so we’re seeing another anti-abortion mass shooting now! It’s a thing that’s happening right now, pro-life violence. It’s another mass shooting, like the one in San Bernadino at the centre for people with special needs!
Except… it’s not. It’s hard to tell at exactly which point the lies are being woven into the story. It looks to me as though Houston Feminist intends the reader to connect the shooting with the place, a women’s health clinic. Then Jamie Kilstein made the mass shooting connection. And “Exposing mean’s rights activism” just passed the whole package along: There was a mass shooting at a women’s health clinic. Each time the story is mentioned, a new lie is added. As I write this, the group made this post just over an hour ago and it has been shared 79 times. We should expect that number to grow as this useful narrative catches the attention of more people.
There’s one slight snag. This didn’t happen. Read about what took place here. Murder is nasty stuff of course and never to be downplayed. But here’s what happened:
HOUSTON (KTRK) — Houston police are investigating whether a deadly shooting Wednesday afternoon was in retaliation for another deadly shooting that happened just two hours earlier.
The first shooting happened in front of a medical clinic at 8410 Fondren in the Kingsgate Shopping Center. Eyewitnesses say it appeared the victim was trying to get away.
“They were chasing him,” said Danielle Fortune.
According to Houston police, at least two people in a car confronted the victim. He was on foot. They shot at him through the car windows and the young male victim fell right in front of the clinic.
“The doctor tried to come out and save him but he couldn’t,” said Germany Warren, who lives nearby.
Police say the suspects then sped off and crashed into parked cars before they bailed out and ran. At least one person was detained.
The car the suspects were in was stolen, according to HPD Homicide investigator Bart Nabors. Both the rear and driver’s side windows were shattered by bullets, he said.
Less than two hours later, Houston police responded to another shooting less than two miles away on Jessamine near Rampart. When they arrived, they found a another young Hispanic male dead in the street.
“Due to the proximity of that scene to this, we are going to investigate the possibility they may be linked,” explained Robert Klementich with HPD’s Homicide Division.
Police don’t have a motive for the first shooting. The victim’s mother identifies him as Jeffrey Machado, 17.
The area is known for gang activity, according to neighbors.
So in an area known for gang activity, a young man was being chased down the street. His pursuers caught up with him outside a women’s health clinic, which is where they shot him dead. They drove off, and later there was (perhaps) a revenge shooting.
There was no mass shooting, and to tweet in the name of a feminist voice that the shooting happened at women’s health clinic, when in fact that’s just where the poor victim was overtaken by his pursuers, is irresponsible.
Narratives are important to people, like the narrative of crazed pro-life violence against meek and mild healthcare providers. And if the facts aren’t there to back them up, we’ll just make them up. Apparently.