View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Pro-lifer murdered

A 63-year-old pro-life activist was gunned down this morning in Michigan.

James Pouillon, who was known as the "Sign Man," was shot several times after 7:30 as he stood across the street from Owosso High School holding his pro-life sign shortly.

A 33 year-old male driving by in a car has been arrested in connection with the killing. He is also implicated in a second homicide.

It is unclear at this point why he allegedly shot Pouillon. It may not be related to Pouillon's pro-life activies. But in recent months, there have been multiple death threats made against pro-lifers, and several assaults. I myself have received threatening comments in response to my pro-life posts.

I hope this was not a hate crime perpetrated against Pouillon because of his pro-life activities.

For more on the shooting go here.

UPDATE: According to Catholic News Agency: Harlan Drake, the 33-year old man arrested in connection with the murder of the Christian pro-life activist James “Jim” Pouillon as well as business owner Mike Fuoss, told detectives that he targeted Pouillon because he was “offended” by his pro-life message.

If this is indeed true, then this was a hate crime, and yet another instance of pro-choice violence. Of course, not all pro-choicers are violent in this way, but it is further proof that the pro-choice side is the far more violent than the pro-life side in this debate.


Blogger GrandmaK said...

So very sad! It is sad for everyone!!! Cathy

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sad indeed, GrandmaK, but I don't think there's any way to call this a "hate crime", which are those motivated by animus towards a recognizable group of persons (Catholics, blacks, homosexuals, latinos, etc.). Mr. Pouillon´s political views are not unique to any particular group of persons, though it looks like a federal civil rights violation charge could be added to state murder charges.

Anyway, I don't often see U.S. news except by internet, so was interested in how the U.S. "liberal media" spun this story... taking it, I thought, very seriously indeed. I uploaded it to youtube here:

2:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to Rachel, "The tables were turned"? Leaving aside the issue of 50 million dead pre-Americans, of course, how shortsighted of her-- albeit long-sighted of her paid-gossiper wallet-- to say such a thing. Was it me, or did she look smug over the death of 2 and nearly 3 people at the hands of a disgruntled near-skinhead?

The violence against abortion protesters in particular is almost 100% under-reported. That's because their harassment/persecution/abuse also comes from law enforcement. Perhaps the man shouldn't have been outside of the school, but what was nearly as disturbing as his death was one student's response, "I can see someone spitting on him or punching him, but not shooting him." My, how large of you. I wonder if his tune would change if it were his mother who in a non-resisted, non-specific arrest had her arm broken by a cop who, when she quietly said she thought he'd broken her arm, yanked it up behind and plastic-cuffed her anyway. They were tired of the woman and her husband's 20yr silent praying vigil at a feminist *health* clinic. *Oddly* enough, the woman herself had to bring it to the public's attention.

8:16 AM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

It is true that the term "hate crime" is usually applied to crimes motivated by such thngs as race or gender. But some of the definitions also include crimes committed because of the victim's political beliefs. There are those on the pro-choice side, for example, who have claimed that some of the violence committed by pro-lifers against pro-choicers be considered hate crimes. (I point out again, by the way, that pro-choicers have actually committed a far greater number of violent crimes against pro-lifers than pro-lifers have committed against pro-choicers.)

IF - and I emphasize if - this Michigan killing was motivated solely by the victim's pro-life beliefs and activism, then it could be considered a hate crime. Given that the accused killed another man, and was planning to kill a third, however, it's unclear at this point if the accused killer was motivated solely by hatred of the pro-lifer's beliefs. So this may or may not be a hate crime.

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not a lawyer, and don't pretend to be. I took some law classes, and can read law, though I'm more up on Napoleonic code than U.S. law these days, since I do some translations, mostly commercial contracts. One thing you learn very quickly is that U.S. law is all about definitions. "Hate Crime" could be used in a lot of situations, but it has a specific meaning. I'm sure some prosecutor somewhere has used "hate crime" to mean other criminal acts, but I can't think of any way this crime would fit the very narrow definitions used by the U.S. Supreme Court. I could be wrong, however.

I'm not going to defend some U.S. news reader... if someone thought she was "smug" that's the way they saw it. I think she was right, though, in saying there haven't been any murder plots (successful at least) against anti-abortion activists.

Sounds to me like the killer was just a fool with a gun, who found three various people that annoyed him for different, unrelated reasons. Why do you think I live here? When people murder each other, at least it's for some logical reason.

1:12 AM  
Blogger Lee Strong said...

mexfiles said, "I think she was right, though, in saying there haven't been any murder plots (successful at least) against anti-abortion activists."

One immediately comes to mind.

Pro-choicer Eileeen Janezic shot and killed pro-life activist Jerry Simon back in 1993.

There have also been numerous attacks, assaults, etc. I remember when I was a reporter I covered the Buffalo abortion protests back in the early 90s. The majority of the arrestes were of pro-choicers, and the most common charge was some form of assault.

As for overall violence, prochoicers have been implicated in more than 1,200 killings - mostly involving women and babies born alive.

(And then there's the matter of the women who die as a result of legal abortions, and the 50 million plus babies killed.)

6:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let something be set straight, and that is all of the major networks know full well that there is violence against pro-lifers, and it is intentionally covered up! Now I just hope all of these pro-aborts get sued in court for slander, and libel, because all of the lying against pro-lifers is just brain washing!

7:21 PM  

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