The Pope and My Right to Life
By Warren M. Hern
This week, I began wearing a bulletproof vest to work. I am not a policeman setting out to raid crack houses. I am a doctor who does abortions.
The reason I wear body armor is that Pope John Paul II
The Denver Catholic hierarchy, which has encouraged anti-abortion activism, is concerned that demonstrations by groups like Operation Rescue might get out of hand. Worried that they will detract from the Pope’s visit and his role as the “most eloquent” and “supreme” opponent of abortion, Archbishop J. Francis Stafford has sought to quell demonstrations. That won’t be easy. The Pope and his bishops have so harshly attacked abortion for so long, it has created a climate of permission for the most radical activists. Now the church does not wish to take responsibility for the unpredictable, violent consequences of its rhetoric.
Today, when I drove to my office, there was a stranger wearing dark glasses and holding a dark object. I wondered, is he an assassin or the husband of a patient? Is the object a handgun or a case for sunglasses?
I saw on the news that the former
home of a colleague in
The first attempt on my life was in
1978. There have been many violent
demonstrations since then. In 1988, five
shots were fired through my waiting-room windows; we now work behind four
layers of bulletproof glass. And this is
Since the assassination of Dr. David
A reporter asked the Pope how he
hoped to stem rising violence among youths in
Warren M. Hern is director of the Boulder Abortion Clinic