What it means to be on the front lines

A New York Times editorial Sunday headlined “Courage in Kansas” recounted some of the obstacles and threats that Julie Burkhart has faced in opening the South Wind Women’s Center, a women’s health care and abortion clinic in Wichita. These include a chilling jailhouse conversation that an anti-abortion group recorded with Scott Roeder, the man who murdered Burkhart’s former boss, Wichita abortion doctor George Tiller. Roeder said that Burkhart had put a target on her back. The editorial concluded: “Dangerous and unconstitutional legislative restrictions, unceasing harassment, threats of violence and fearful doctors having to hide their identities for self-protection: This is what it means to be on the front line of trying to deliver legal and necessary reproductive health care to women in Wichita.” Meanwhile, anti-abortion groups are criticizing the media for not giving more coverage to the case of a Philadelphia abortion doctor accused of delivering live babies and then killing them.