Thoughts on a Torn Poster

Readability

Thoughts on a Torn Poster

I heard anec­dotes about a man with a pro-​life sign being assailed dur­ing the recent Boston demonstration/​counterdemonstration, and then found that an Esquire writer tweeted a short video of the inci­dent. (Lan­guage alert.)

The guy was car­ry­ing a poster with pho­tos of pre­born human beings on the upper half of the poster, vis­i­ble in the video. (I should add that these were not bloody-​baby pic­tures. If there were any pho­tos of aborted remains on the lower part of the poster, I didn’t see them due to the cam­era angle.) He was pur­sued — or as the Esquire writer put it, “made to part ways with his sign” — by masked assailants, who tore the pho­tos off the poster one by one. Among the scream­ing voices was a woman’s, say­ing some­thing that sounded like “I chose to have my baby but I’m glad I had a choice!”

At least that par­tic­u­lar woman had the integrity to speak her mind with­out hid­ing behind a mask and with­out van­dal­iz­ing anything.

In Pete’s cov­er­age of the recent Boston demonstration/​counterdemonstration, he noted that the uni­fy­ing fac­tor among the dis­parate “counter” groups was anti-​Trump sen­ti­ment to a greater or lesser degree. I don’t dis­pute that. I think that sen­ti­ment was accom­pa­nied by more than a dash of abor­tion advo­cacy, of a kind that was around long before Trump and will sadly be around long after he moves on.

I have no idea who the man with the poster sup­ported for Pres­i­dent; per­haps like me he’s at risk of being hash­tagged #Nev­erTrump. Those masked hooli­gans who van­dal­ized his sign didn’t care. The evi­dently har­bored antipa­thy to the right to life and to any­one pro­mot­ing it. Trump didn’t even need to be a fac­tor for them.

That was one inci­dent, involv­ing rel­a­tively few peo­ple, in a place where tens of thou­sands of peo­ple had con­gre­gated for var­i­ous pur­poses. Maybe the masked van­dals who tore up pho­tos of the pre­born humans weren’t rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the larger crowd. Then again, maybe they were.

Mayor and Pres­i­dent alike tweeted approval of the day’s peace­ful demon­stra­tors speak­ing out against hate. It was a day for broad strokes, not fine details, so maybe inci­dents like the one I’ve described escaped the politi­cians’ notice.

But is it some­thing other than hate when masked peo­ple car­ry­ing sticks men­ace a man hold­ing a poster? Is it peace­ful to rip up a sign someone’s hold­ing, as long as no one sus­tains phys­i­cal injury? I’m pretty sure that if I, as a pro-​lifer, were to tear up a sign held by some­one, I’d be charged with sim­ple assault under the laws of my state. (Rightly so, I might add.) Maybe the Boston police had to pick their bat­tles, so to speak, and sign-​ripping wasn’t a law enforce­ment pri­or­ity the day of a mass rally. Under­stand­able, from a tac­ti­cal point of view. But I believe the Boston sign van­dals got a pass that wouldn’t have been afforded to any­one tear­ing up a pro-​abortion sign.

Read­ers, please take a moment to read Da Tech Guy’s pinned post, and then hit Da Tip Jar in sup­port of inde­pen­dent jour­nal­ism. Thank you!

Ellen Kolb is a writer and pro-​life activist liv­ing in New Hamp­shire. Read more of her work at EllenKolb​.com/blog.

I heard anecdotes about a man with a pro-life sign being assailed during the recent Boston demonstration/counterdemonstration, and then found that an Esquire writer tweeted a short video of the incident.    (Language alert.)

The guy was carrying a poster with photos of preborn human beings on the upper half of the poster, visible in the video. (I should add that these were not bloody-baby pictures. If there were any photos of aborted remains on the lower part of the poster, I didn’t see them due to the camera angle.) He was pursued – or as the Esquire writer put it, “made to part ways with his sign” – by masked assailants, who tore the photos off the poster one by one. Among the screaming voices was a woman’s, saying something that sounded like “I chose to have my baby but I’m glad I had a choice!”

At least that particular woman had the integrity to speak her mind without hiding behind a mask and without vandalizing anything.

In Pete’s coverage of the recent Boston demonstration/counterdemonstration,   he noted that the unifying factor among the disparate “counter” groups was anti-Trump sentiment to a greater or lesser degree. I don’t dispute that. I think that sentiment was accompanied by more than a dash of abortion advocacy, of a kind that was around long before Trump and will sadly be around long after he moves on.

I have no idea who the man with the poster supported for President; perhaps like me he’s at risk of being hashtagged #NeverTrump. Those masked hooligans who vandalized his sign didn’t care. The evidently harbored antipathy to the right to life and to anyone promoting it. Trump didn’t even need to be a factor for them.

That was one incident, involving relatively few people, in a place where tens of thousands of people had congregated for various purposes. Maybe the masked vandals who tore up photos of the preborn humans weren’t representative of the larger crowd. Then again, maybe they were.

Mayor and President alike tweeted approval of the day’s peaceful demonstrators speaking out against hate. It was a day for broad strokes, not fine details, so maybe incidents like the one I’ve described escaped the politicians’ notice.

But is it something other than hate when masked people carrying sticks menace a man holding a poster? Is it peaceful to rip up a sign someone’s holding, as long as no one sustains physical injury?  I’m pretty sure that if I, as a pro-lifer, were to tear up a sign held by someone, I’d be charged with simple assault under the laws of my state. (Rightly so, I might add.) Maybe the Boston police had to pick their battles, so to speak, and sign-ripping wasn’t a law enforcement priority the day of a mass rally. Understandable, from a tactical point of view. But I believe the Boston sign vandals got a pass that wouldn’t have been afforded to anyone tearing up a pro-abortion sign.

Readers, please take a moment to read Da Tech Guy’s pinned post, and then hit Da Tip Jar in support of independent journalism. Thank you!

Ellen Kolb is a writer and pro-life activist living in New Hampshire. Read more of her work at EllenKolb.com/blog.