Hundreds rally against Planned Parenthood in Beaverton
The peaceful protest comes in response to controversial videos
The rally, which attracted well over 200 demonstrators to the downtown area, aimed to focus new attention on Planned Parenthood following the release earlier this month of undercover videos of Planned Parenthood officials talking about selling fetal tissue from abortions.
The videos show the horror of what's really going on, said Lisa Stiller, a national board member with Democrats For Life of America.
Stiller went on to ask of the Pro-Choice movement What choice does Pro-Choice give? The only choice they give is abortion.
Also speaking at the Tuesday rally were: Oregon Right to Life Executive Director Gayle Atteberry; author Cindy Brunk (Love Will); State Rep. Bill Post (R-Keizer); Patti Williamson, a speaker for SaveOne; and former Benson High teacher Bill Diss (he was fired after not allowing Planned Parenthood representatives to speak to his class).
For their part, representatives from Planned Parenthood said the demonstration was designed to "shame" and "intimidate" its patients.
These protests are designed to shame the patients who seek basic health care services from Planned Parenthood and to intimidate the health care professionals who work here," said Stacy M. Cross, President & CEO, Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette. "Women should be able to get health care without fear of violence, harassment or intimidation.
While generally peaceful, the crowd was occasionally boisterous, joining in chants led by Melody Durrett of Students For Life of America, one of those chants saying We are the pro-life generation, and then back-and-forth calls of Planned Parenthood and Defund.
Visitors to the rally also carried a plethora of signs with messages including: Planned Parenthood commits 897 abortions every day, Planned Parenthood sells baby parts, Life is precious, Planned Parenthood betrays women, The value of a preborn's lung echoes the value of a preborn's potential voice for liberty, I am the pro-life generation and We will abolish abortion.
On the other side of the building, there a small group of Planned Parenthood supporters held a banner that read "Health Care Happens Here."
Atteberry, Post, Stiller and others called for the federal government, in response to the controversial videos, to stop funding the organization.
Planned Parenthood's president, Cecile Richards, was quoted on Sunday saying the group has done nothing illegal and is the target of a political smear campaign.
"Publicizing secret video footage of a woman's abortion process is a grossly offensive act that should be rejected by all, regardless of political perspective," Cross added.
*This story was updated with Planned Parenthood's response at 3:40 p.m. Tuesday.