Sunday, September 7, 2003

Abortion center violence

Clinic relieved that no violence followed execution
Published September 7, 2003

It was a normal Friday at the Presidential Women's Center in West Palm Beach. A day for follow-up appointments, consultations, HIV tests -- but, as customary, no surgeries.

Two days after the execution of Paul Hill, whose intense opposition to abortion led to double murder, there were no signs of heightened threat, said Mona Reis, director of the county's oldest clinic openly providing abortions.

This was a relief because Hill had given a calm and chilling last statement Wednesday. Strapped to a gurney, he advocated more acts like his own when, in 1994, he killed a Pensacola doctor and his security escort with a shotgun.

Yet a normal day at the Presidential Women's Center is not like a normal day everywhere else. It is a day under siege.