Cosmopolitan magazine recently published an article written by Rebecca Grant titled “She Told a Guy She Worked at an Abortion Clinic. On Their Next Date, He Raped Her: Clinic director Calla Hales was a victim of the extreme violence abortion providers face simply for doing their jobs and helping women.” The article tells of the violent rape of an abortion provider, but rather than prosecuting the attacker, the narrative instead takes aim at the pro-life movement. In a new horrifying low even for Cosmo, the magazine instead attempts to pin the alleged violent rape described on those who believe in the sanctity and dignity of human life.
According to The Federalist, “Hales says her attacker turned violent after she told him she worked at A Preferred Women’s Health Center (APWHC), a chain of four abortion businesses in North Carolina and Georgia.” When Hales recounted the attack she said, “the man sexually assaulted her at the end of their second date, making his motivations clear even while he was raping her.”
However, it seems the author of the Cosmo article twisted the story and shifted the blame off of the rapist and attempted to somehow pin his actions on the entire pro life movement. The story compares all pro life people to violent rapists! As Life News notes:
While Hales said she refused to press charges against her attacker out of concerns that he might seek “retribution,” Grant lays the blame on abortion opponents such as those peacefully protesting the deadly practice at the Charlotte and Raleigh locations of A Preferred Women’s Health Center (APWHC), where Hales serves as director.
Grant grasps for straws as she continues to attack pro lifers, attempting to use numbers and logical fallacies to make her case appear sound. According to The Federalist:
Curiously, Grant then goes on to cite a 2016 National Abortion Federation report that actually shows incidences of violence against abortion businesses on a steep downturn over the past seven years. By NAF’s count, even non-violent crimes such as trespassing fell by more than 53 percent from 2010 to 2016 as compared to 2000-09.
Nevertheless, Grant attempts to prove that a rise in reported picketing in front of abortion clinics is tied to Hales’ rape:
In its 2016 report, the National Abortion Federation (NAF), which monitors clinic harassment and violence, found that picketing, vandalism, obstruction, invasion, trespassing, burglary, stalking, assault and battery, and bomb threats are all on the rise. Clinics reported 60,000 incidents of picketing that year, an all-time high since the NAF began tracking these statistics in 1977. The report also documented a five-fold increase in hate speech and internet harassment, which escalated after the election. The 2016 National Clinic Violence Survey, published by the Feminist Majority Foundation, found that the percentage of clinics reporting the most severe types of anti-abortion violence and threats of violence has dramatically increased from the first six months of 2014 to the first six months of 2016 — from 19.7 percent to 34.2 percent. Hales was raped in November 2015.
Now abortion rights advocates fear the violence and harassment may get even worse. The Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act, passed in 1994, made it a federal crime to use force, threat of force, or physical obstruction to interfere with a person’s right to obtain or provide reproductive health services, but it’s only effective if enforced.
Cosmopolitan’s argument is clear, and becomes even more pronounced as the article moves along: picketing abortion clinics leads to violent assaults and rape. It’s hard to dream up a more ironclad fusion of Slippery Slope and Guilt by Association fallacies than that.
Unfortunately, Cosmopolitan does Hales and other victims of rape and abuse a tremendous disservice by blaming the pro-life movement for this violent crime. The Cosmo article could have been used to expose a violent criminal, but instead he was allowed to go unpunished and unaccountable for his actions.
It’s a shame that Cosmo wasted this chance to truly help a hurting woman find justice and instead twisted it for their own political agenda.