This post originally appeared on VICE UK
A video of a pregnant woman performing the most thundering mic drop in history on some anti-abortion protesters outside a clinic in Southwark, in central London, has just gone viral—and that is a good thing. That's the "hot take" here. Pregnant women shouting are great. It's impossible to mess with an angry pregnant woman. She is always going to win.
Because whether you're pro-life or pro-choice, you've got to admit that thrusting a placard and a camera into the face of women who are about to get abortions—which isn't, you know, a decision anyone takes lightly, and is one often made by those in horrible positions—is about the worst way of instigating change ever. The clumsiest protest method on earth. Going after those who need help instead of the system that offers it. Shouting at a football because you don't like FIFA. That sort of thing.
Anyway, the woman—who hasn't been named yet but you know the phone lines at every crisis center in Southwark are dinging off the hook as ITV News races MailOnline to find her—took umbrage with a pro-life protester after he alleged he wasn't using his camera to film the faces of women entering the clinic. He insisted the camera was actually for his own safety, to stop the protesters' actions being misconstrued. But if a precaution for your own safety involves putting the safety and privacy of others at risk then it's a shit safety system, mate, isn't it? Plus it looks like those things you clip to toddlers when you take them for a walk.
Journalist Sunny Hundal filmed the exchange, during which the woman said, "I agree with what they're saying; it's wrong what you're doing. You don't know why people are doing what they're doing." Later she said, "Making women feel guilty is so wrong, so fucking wrong."
The main thrust of Pregnant Hero Lady's argument was that the kids' charity she works for, Kids Company, was located nearby, and that the children being helped by them shouldn't have to see banners with bloodied foetuses on them. "Many people have been abused, you don't know what their reasons [are]," she said. "This is just so wrong on so many levels." Then she pointed to the big banner and tutted, and the bloke with the camera looked really sheepish and ashamed, like he was being told off in front of all his mates by his mum.
Obviously abortion is a big issue, especially at the moment, as the group behind the protest—British Pregnancy Advisory Services, or BPAS—campaigns to enforce buffer zones outside abortion clinics and GP surgeries. (Similar tactics are being employed in America, where anti-abortion groups are going as far as building fake crisis centers where pregnant women are sat down and given pro-life lectures.) Infiltrating pro-life groups in the US shows that shock tactics really do warn people away from seeking help. The UK pro-life movement is armed with plastic fetuses and vigils, but they are just as persistent. It's weird how being on one side or another of the abortion issue seems to bring out the "let's stand outside buildings with photos of bloodied fetuses" in people. No other issue seems to inspire so much outrage, so many carefully laminated placards and posters.
Abort67, whose volunteers took part in the protest, reckon the woman might be a stooge, and seem to think that harassing their team of pamplet-holding harrassers is somehow worse than harassing vulnerable women who are seeking a perfectly legal medical procedure. Cool argument. In the meantime, if you're into it, Kids Company have a Christmas fundraiser that is currently only 34 percent toward its goal.
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