In the wake of a huge GOP midterm victory, pro-abortion women actively took to the social website Twitter to reject the incoming wave of pro-life candidates. Those who have had abortions spoke out on Twitter, proudly tweeting “#ihadanabortion.” From the Chicago Sun-Times, to The Washington Post, the media obliged these women and their left-wing social agenda by complaining conservatives wish to “scrub the ‘a-word’ of stigma and shame” and compare pro-abortion women to those fighting for civil rights.
When a “hashtag” (a pound sign) followed by a series of words is used on Twitter (for example - #ihadanabortion) an online community is created for those who are discussing a similar topic. According to the Post, on Nov. 5 the #ihadanabortion topic was among the top 10 most popular or “trending” topics on Twitter.
With more than 75 million users, Twitter has proved to be an effective marketing and communication tool, social network site, and information-sharing platform. Recognizing Twitter’s impact, the media gave these pro-choice women an unobstructed podium to share their views. Donna Trussell of Politics Daily, used her coverage to declare pro-choice women share the same human rights struggle of those in the civil rights movement and women “suffragists”:
“Wrote one commenter: ‘It just seems like bad manners to tweet your abortion. So you decided to kill your child. That's your right. But don't assume everyone else wants to hear about it. I don't want to hear about your rape, your cheating on your spouse, your diarrhea. I don't even want to see the baby pictures of children you didn't kill.’
Key phrase: ‘That's your right.’ Left unspoken: For now. Until the pro-life movement can get Roe v. Wade overturned.
The struggle for human rights is not about manners or what people want to hear, is it? I'm sure segregationists in the Old South didn't want to hear about civil rights. Suffragists had to be plenty obnoxious to secure women's right to vote. Sex education pioneer Margaret Sanger risked jail time to get her word out.
As if Trussell’s liberal leanings were not clear enough, her skewed description of pro-life activists surely clued in the reader. “Dr. George Tiller, an abortion provider, was murdered in 2009 by an anti-abortion activist. Despite pro-life efforts to depict Dr. Tiller as a sociopath motivated by greed, his stated preference was dermatology, but he changed his specialty after hearing about a patient who died from an illegal abortion.” The Twitter user behind the name @IAmDrTiller began the movement by tweeting, ‘Time for us to come out. Who’s had an abortion? Show antis we’re not intimidated by scare tactics. Use: #ihadanabortion.”
Salon.com writer Tracy Clark-Flory defended the provocative topic as necessary “bold rhetoric” following the 2010 midterm elections. “Political slogans are not about nuance…” she wrote. “There are surprisingly few anti-choice tweets and, for the most part, the thread feels like a small, intimate conversation -- so much so that I feel trepidation writing about it. That's the whole point, though -- to take this private conversation public, to scrub the ‘a-word’ of stigma and shame. This is part of a long tradition of feminist consciousness-raising, it's just that the medium has changed.” The Chicago Sun-Times reprinted the liberal Salon.com article as well.
The opening line for The Washington Post's On Faith blog post about the #ihadanabortion topic clearly showed where writer Elizabeth Tenety comes down on the life issue. “With Tuesday'ssweep of antiabortion candidates into Congress (including a handful of 'hardliners' who say they would outlaw the procedure in all circumstances), some pro-abortion rights activists took to Twitter under the hashtag #ihadanabortion.” Among admittedly hundreds of tweets that appeared on the topic, Tenety only featured three– and naturally, they were conservative-bashing, pro-choice liberal comments.
“Conservatives should stop being so judgmental contraception, sex and abortion. #ihadanabortion” was one tweet Tenety featured.