George Tiller was a doctor who provided women’s health services in his hometown of Wichita, Kansas. Initially intending to start a dermatology practice there, he took over his father’s family practice after his family was tragically killed in a plane crash in 1970. His father’s practice had provided abortions, and he continued to do so.
The most evil elements of the Right would not like this. Dr. Tiller had survived multiple attempts on his life. In 1993, the doctor was shot five times by an anti-abortion terrorist, Shelley Shannon. Tiller was hit in both of his arms, which never deterred the doctor from carrying out his practice. Seven years prior to this attack, Tiller’s clinic was firebombed. But on May 31, 2009, another anti-abortion terrorist would successfully claim Dr. Tiller’s life. While performing his duties as usher in the church he attended, he was shot in the head by Scott Roeder, effectively shutting down the ability of women in Wichita, Kansas to get the care and treatment they might have needed, including abortions.
This event remains a significant moment in history for me because of the disgusting way people on the Right celebrated the assassination of Dr. Tiller, especially the falsely so-called Christian Right. I was already questioning conservatism after a visit to a local bar that was celebrating the birthday of Ronald Reagan turned into a wake-up call as to the way white male conservatives truly view Black people, but when the Right fully consented to Tiller’s death, the Right became dead to me; the shedding of blood to advance the “pro-life” agenda of “saving babies” was where I drew my ideological line. That was the day I became a liberal.
Today, the Republican Party is just now beginning its walking away from Judge Roy Moore, a man with a reputation around the country of being a raging theocrat, and up until recently, most notorious for his refusal to remove a monument to the Ten Commandments from Alabama’s Supreme Court building.
He soon became known as the “Ten Commandments judge,” a moniker that proved no less accurate in 2001, when Moore — by then an Alabama state Supreme Court judge — erected a 5,280-pound monument to the Ten Commandments in the state judicial building. Three lawyers sued Moore in three separate cases, arguing that the monument gave the impression that Moore would look less favorably on clients who did not conform to his biblical ethos. Although a federal district judge ruled in 2002 that the monument was unconstitutional, Moore refused to remove it, and was subsequently removed from the bench. He defended himself on the grounds that he saw Scripture as the foundation of American law, saying then, “I cannot forsake my conscience. I will not neglect my duty. And I will never, never deny the God upon whom our laws and our country depend.”
Perhaps this is the “bridge too far” Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) meant when he tweeted that criticism of Roy Moore. But now, Moore is under serious (and long overdue) fire over a November 9th Washington Post report that he, as a 32-year-old man, solicited sexual favors from a fourteen-year-old Leigh Corfman:
Alone with Corfman, Moore chatted with her and asked for her phone number, she says. Days later, she says, he picked her up around the corner from her house in Gadsden, drove her about 30 minutes to his home in the woods, told her how pretty she was and kissed her. On a second visit, she says, he took off her shirt and pants and removed his clothes. He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear.
“I wanted it over with — I wanted out,” she remembers thinking. “Please just get this over with. Whatever this is, just get it over.” Corfman says she asked Moore to take her home, and he did.
It wasn’t enough to not unanimously denounce the death of Dr. Tiller, a man who should never have had his life taken from him. But in not fully denouncing the actions of Roy Moore, the Right has shown that even pedophilia is fully excusable for the sake of political gain. In their war against liberalism, Roy Moore’s existence as the Republican candidate to take over Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III’s seat in the Senate is easily passed over, as if the man “stole a lawnmower.”
Judge Roy Moore is unfit for office, and should immediately step down. His name must be forever shunned in the halls of the Legislative Branch. This may not happen, as Moore is up ten points over Democrat Doug Jones, according to The Hill. Alabama’s voters are all but willing to give place to a pedophile.
Shame on the state of Alabama if Roy Moore wins.