What They Said…

Our newest fund raiser – Antis Say the Darnedest Things – ended Saturday.  Remember?  Some of us pledged money for every time a specific protester said a specific thing, only we couldn’t publish which ones we were tracking ’cause then they might quit saying that thing.  Well, here’s what they said.

Donna:

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(Picture shows Donna in a light blue coat, arms folded across her chest, disapproving look on her face, saying YOUR RELATIONSHIP WILL NEVER BE THE SAME}

And Dominic:

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{Dominic is in his camoflauge gear and holding his “Before I formed you in the womb….” sign. He says: MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE.}

Keep in mind that Donna is at the clinic every, single day.  Dominic is generally only there on Saturday.  So how many times did they say their thing?

Donna –  Your relationship will never be the same – 21 times

Dominic – Murder in the First Degree – 29 times

Amazing.

We are still tabulating results for the pledges, but I understand that Donna has raised $208 for us all by herself.  Funds will be used for a variety of needs – winter supplies like salt for the sidewalk or hand and foot warmers; breakfasts for escort trainings, help with parking expenses and other miscellaneous needs.  Often, we share the funds with one of our sister organizations who provide hands on support for abortion access.

I’ll let you know what the total is for Dominic when I know.  Thanks to him and Donna for helping us, albeit unintentionally, as we support people seeking access to abortion, .

In the meantime, the first results are in from our Springtime Pledge-a-Picketer fundraiser.  You know, once upon a time (um, last year) we just did this fundraiser for the Saturday before Mother’s Day.  We used to have hundreds of protesters show up – really, hundreds.  But the last few years, the turn-out for that Saturday has been kind of pitiful.  Last year, they had a huge turn-out for the Saturday before Easter, and sometimes they show up in droves for the Saturday before Father’s Day.

So we began to wonder if they were purposely staying away because we do the fund-raiser.  Seriously.  It seemed like the other days got bigger and Mother’s Day kept shrinking.  So this year we decided to combine them all.   That way, if rain or sleet or hail  – or the knowledge that abortion access is improved by their presence – keeps them away from one big day, we’ll catch them on another one.  So – drum roll please – on the Saturday before Easter there were  ~~ 79 protesters.

Yeah.  That’s it.  A weak turnout.  Maybe they’ll have a better showing on May 9th.  I won’t say I hope so – if they don’t show, of course that’s good for us too, and even better for the client.  What a terrific win-win.

Finally – I have to say this here so I don’t say it on the sidewalk.  This is really to Donna:

“Your relationship will never be the same???  What are you thinking?   Do you think their relationship will be the same if they go ahead and have this baby???   Cause I’m pretty sure that’s gonna be a HUGE frigging change!!  What are you thinking?”

Oh, that’s right, she’s not.

Ok, whew, I feel better now that I’ve said it.  Thanks.

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And it’s not too late to pledge for Pledge-a-Picketer.   You know how it works – you can pledge a certain amount per protester, or just pledge a set amount regardless.  Here’s the link to make a pledge.

Pledge-a-Picketer

Pledge-a-Picketer ~ 2013

Seven Saturdays away from the Saturday before Mother’s Day.

That has a nice rhythmic flow, doesn’t it?  I was going to make it a poem, but I really couldn’t think of the next line.  I mean:

“Standing in a line, their rosaries keeping time” doesn’t really work.

“Chasing people down, spreading shame around…” is mediocre, at best.

So I let that idea go.  But it is time for our annual fund-raiser.  This will be the fourth year that we’ve taken advantage of a day when protesters turn out in droves.

In 2009, between 275 and 325 protesters showed up.  This was before we started doing the fund raiser, but thanks to the call-out we do for extra escorts there were about 70-80 escorts there.  A camera crew showed up, doing a special on teen pregnancy that year, and it sounds like it was a real mess.    There’s a post here that describes it.

We started pledge-a-picketer in 2010.  It’s a simple fundraiser.  You pledge so much for each protester who shows up, we count the protesters, and the more of them there are, the more money we raise for escorts {vests, training costs, and other miscellany} and abortion access. The idea was a great success – we had 255 protesters, 87 escorts, and a relatively uneventful day.

It is a lovely moment, when most of the protesters have arrived and we get to walk down the line counting.  It baffles and annoys them, but it’s the one time that we can enjoy there being plenty of them.

In 2011, the day before Mother’s Day coincided with Derby Day, so the clinic closed.  We really do shut down the city for Derby.

In 2012, Pledge-a-Picketer was back.  Interestingly, we only had 151 protesters.  The number of escorts dropped too, but 40 was plenty for the crowd.

Enough nostalgia.  It’s that time of year again.  If you’ve ever thought about escorting, or if you escort on the big occasions, like Mother’s Day, now is the time to think about joining us.   We’ll be having a training too, more details on that soon.

And it’s time to pledge-a-picketer.

We’ll be including this form in our posts from now until The Day, but don’t wait to til the last minute, pledge now: