Abortion protest in Charlottetown turns violent

Nigel
Nigel Armstrong
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Man arrested after pushing anti-abortion protester, part of 60-some protesters on P.E.I. from Ontario

A man walking past anti-abortion protesters assembled opposite  the entrance to UPEI pushed one to the ground and was arrested Thursday afternoon.

Close to 60 members of the national anti-abortion group Show the Truth have traveled to P.E.I. this week, mostly from Ontario.

They are here because of an international conference being hosted by the University of Prince Edward Island titled Abortion: The Unfinished Revolution.

On Wednesday the anti-abortion group stirred controversy in Charlottetown by handing out postcards with a graphic photo alleged to be of an aborted fetus.

Those same images and more were on display with hand-held posters and in-ground, smaller signs along University Avenue by the campus Thursday morning for about three hours. The group then moved out the avenue to an area around the Charlottetown Mall at mid-day, before moving back to the sidewalk opposite the main entrance gate of UPEI later in the afternoon.

Just before 5:30 p.m., a lone, young male came walking along the sidewalk on the west-side of University Ave. by Browns Court, shouting and kicking at the in-ground signs placed in the grass by members of Show the Truth.

At one point, as the man started to move through the main protest group, he shoved Paul Gordon of Belleville, Ont. to the ground.

UPEI Campus Police officers had been keeping watch on the protest all day and saw the looming confrontation unfold. They moved across the intersection and arrested the man, holding him until Charlottetown Police Services arrived to take over the investigation.

Island EMS also arrived to check Gordon but he was not injured sufficiently to warrant transport.

It was all too much for children in the anti-abortion protest group, as teenage girls wept while seated on the grass, surrounded by shocked-looking adults.

"He was grabbing signs and throwing them to the ground and when he got to my husband he threw my husband down," said Nancy Gordon, wife of the victim.

The assailant did not appear to be intoxicated but was clearly very intense, said Nancy.

Nancy said they have encountered similar confrontations at other protests in the past.

The Gordons said they were invited to P.E.I. by an acquaintance who lives on the Island.

The Gordons are parents to eight children.

"We have three or four here at the protest," said Paul as he waited to sign off on a written report by paramedics.

The group loaded into a white bus, saying they are planning protests around the capital for the next few days, but would not release any details, saying it was the policy of the group to reveal nothing of their plans.

NArmstrong@TheGuardian.pe.ca

Twitter.com/NigelPEI

Organizations: University of Prince Edward Island, Gordon's, Charlottetown Police Services EMS

Geographic location: P.E.I., Charlottetown, Ontario Belleville Iceland

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  • cebfla
    September 07, 2014 - 16:52

    What is your opinion on the Affordable Health Care for America Act / Obamacare as it stands now? The following survey is a College Healthcare Economics Class assignment analyzing the opinions and level of understanding of the Affordable Health Care for America Act (ACA) or HR 3962. Thank you for your participation. https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/3DNWPPM

  • Leanne
    August 12, 2014 - 14:22

    I am for freedom of speech however I was witness to this "protest" twice in Halifax this week while driving with my 4yr old daughter who was terrified by the images displayed and has had trouble sleeping since. By all means hold up your signs, protest but really the over-sized pictures are going too far. You have to think about everyone who might pass by not just adults. I don't believe in murder but I sure as hell don't show my daughter pictures of murdered people so she knows it wrong. What kind of sick people expose children to that type of content. I had no warning of where they would be in order to avoid them and feel violated for my daughter who hopefully will forget the images in time.

    • Jennifer Turner
      August 13, 2014 - 06:39

      They will stop at NOTHING to accomplish an agenda. Traumatizing people? A.O.k.! Traumatizing children? (Hey, I didn't make the kid look! Not my problem!) Traumatizing young women at what is likely to be one of the most difficult days of their lives (THAT's my FAVOURITE HOBBY!), Flat out lying to people to push their agenda (you guessed it...that's totally fine too). They should just go to the US. They'll find more friends there. There is no debate to be had here anymore, as it was settled a long time ago and will not be reopened by any government. Moreover the fact that they bring their own young children along, manipulating them and others with one stone? That's just sick. So when do hate speech laws kick in? Clearly enough people are upset by the images they shove in peoples faces and private mailboxes, effectively calling thousands of Canadian women murderers. Stay classy.

  • Leanne
    August 12, 2014 - 14:21

    I am for freedom of speech however I was witness to this "protest" twice in Halifax this week while driving with my 4yr old daughter who was terrified by the images displayed and has had trouble sleeping since. By all means hold up your signs, protest but really the over-sized pictures are going too far. You have to think about everyone who might pass by not just adults. I don't believe in murder but I sure as hell don't show my daughter pictures of murdered people so she knows it wrong. What kind of sick people expose children to that type of content. I had no warning of where they would be in order to avoid them and feel violated for my daughter who hopefully will forget the images in time.

  • Bull Puckey
    August 12, 2014 - 09:49

    Ted Hempwick How about we use the same tactics to educate future drug users and smokers. MMMM just make it more accessible. How about a tour through a Cigarette or Crack factory. Dont sound that smart does it, "Irony that out". The only abortions that should be going on is the country aborting these clinics. A life is a life and if any one thinks its ok to scrape it out of you then all forms of murder should be legal also..

    • Nora
      August 12, 2014 - 11:16

      So, Bull, I take it you're a male... What, exactly, would you do to "outlaw abortion"? Is it your belief that pregnant women should be locked up and forced to gestate? Should we then also monitor them for 9 months to ensure that the pregnancy takes so you can then cut out the unwanted gestated fetus and hand it over to a barren couple waiting in the wings for a nice fresh new baby? Is that your proposal? I have yet to hear any reasonable solutions to abortion put forth by these anti-choice, Taliban, misogynist men. The fact is, abortion is a necessary part of women's health. It ain't never going away but we do know that you wish death upon the woman who chooses it.

  • Sarah
    August 12, 2014 - 01:05

    It's so wonderful to read how so many of you care very much about children and their feelings. You're correct that the pro-choicers shared their opinions behind closed doors where no one was forced to hear them. Of course, they do, on a regular basis, force their views on children, by shredding them, ripping them to pieces, or burning them with chemicals. Also behind closed doors. Which is precisely why pro-lifers have to expose this injustice, as uncomfortable as it may be to look at.

    • Nora
      August 12, 2014 - 11:21

      But your problem Sarah, is...those pictures so commonly used by your terrorist groups are not real. Your terrorist anti-choice groups are using phony images of a late term miscarriage as well as digitalized images showing fetus' development that is not scientifically accurate. You know who used to do the same thing in order to try and fool the masses? The Nazis. Intelligent people see through your nonsense and trust women to make decisions about their own bodies and healthcare choices.

    • Skulander
      August 12, 2014 - 21:43

      So, Sarah. Why do you use FAKE images of miscarriages or illegal late-term abortion (most of which, in Canada, are done to save a woman's live or because the fetus is non-viable)? Why not mention that 90% of abortions occur before week 12, 50% before week 7? Inconvenient for you, Sarah, isn't it?

    • Skulander
      August 19, 2014 - 00:13

      So, Sarah. Why do you use FAKE images of miscarriages or illegal late-term abortion (most of which, in Canada, are done to save a woman's live or because the fetus is non-viable)? Why not mention that 90% of abortions occur before week 12, 50% before week 7? Inconvenient for you, Sarah, isn't it?

  • Skulander
    August 11, 2014 - 23:17

    GOOD!!! I'm glad people are starting to stand up to these horrible antichoice protesters. BTW there needs to be laws against those kinds of highly offensive, largely fabricated, images. People don't want this sort of propaganda and, in any case, certainly won't make abortions go away.

  • Ted Hempwick
    August 09, 2014 - 15:09

    The irony is that having clinics available to educate women REDUCES abortion rates. So you pro-life protesters, by ensuring we don't get the medical facilities WE SHOULD HAVE available on PEI, are actually keeping those rates higher than they need to be. But I guess rational thought isn't a tool at the disposal of these fools.

  • Young Adult
    August 09, 2014 - 12:14

    Talk about shoddy reporting, I love how this is completely one sided....

  • Holly Fraser
    August 08, 2014 - 22:25

    First of all....considering the inflammatory nature of what these protesters are doing , I am surprised that there hasn't been more violence. My husband felt VERY violent yesterday when our 5 year old daughter had to see these graphic images driving along University Avenue. To address the Pro Life advocates who have posted that people need to 'face the truth' with harsh images ( although they are derived from illegal late term abortions) ...YOU ARE IDIOTS. There is no value to a 5 year old child seeing those pictures. My children don't watch violence on television, they don't see war or murder or graphic pictures. They do NOT need to know about abortion at the preschool level. You are fools to even utter such nonsense and it only drives more people away with such ignorant statements.

  • Amelia ross
    August 08, 2014 - 20:50

    This is not true. I watched this unfold, his sign was thrown and that's it. The police showed up AFTER.

  • L Dunne
    August 08, 2014 - 16:25

    I agree, why are they allowed to show these graphic images?

  • Alissa
    August 08, 2014 - 15:49

    If pro-"choice" people think violence in the womb is okay, we shouldn't be surprised that they think violence outside the womb is perfectly acceptable as well.

    • Young Adult
      August 09, 2014 - 12:19

      If pro-"life" people think showing horrific images to children is okay, they shouldn't be surprised if people get angry by juvenile protests.

    • Young Adult
      August 09, 2014 - 12:19

      If pro-"life" people think showing horrific images to children is okay, they shouldn't be surprised if people get angry by juvenile protests.

    • Alissa
      August 10, 2014 - 08:28

      @Young Adult- people should be angry about abortion, that's why they're doing what they're doing in the first place. I agree it's sad when we are forced to show children what we do to other children.

    • Clone
      August 11, 2014 - 10:35

      I think people who are the victims of rape or domestic sexual abuse should have a choice as to whether or not they must carry the offspring of their assailants to term, don't you? If it was you, would you prefer to have that choice, or would you rather have that choice taken away, or be harassed/ridiculed by people such as yourself?

    • Skulander
      August 11, 2014 - 23:22

      If "prolife" people think showing these images is OK, when clearly they come from miscarriages, then they shouldn't be surprised if people stand up to them. Ideally, we should have a law that prevents this inappropriate display in the public square.

  • aDot
    August 08, 2014 - 14:23

    My opinion on abortion aside, I have to apply for approval and pay taxes if I want to put a small sign on my own front lawn with a business name on it. How is it that these folks are allowed to display horrific images (which are not even accurate) on signs placed on property that does not belong to them ???

  • A Mom
    August 08, 2014 - 13:58

    I am worried about these kids that are holding these graphic, horrifying signs that they would be so upset by someone pushing a protester but not more disturbed by holding these photos and being exposed to these images at such a young age and not seem upset!?!? All I can say is their parents should be ashamed to bring up such cold and unempathitc children!!!! Isn't there some sort of law against showing your children or the public graphic images with warning!! If they want to make a point try being educated enough to have conversation with the people of PEI! Disgusted by this group!!!!! I think we should take a stand as parents wanting to protect the children that have been or could be exposed to such horror!

  • BrianC
    August 08, 2014 - 12:05

    Enough of the anti-abortion " This is the Christian belief", not all of us share your views or believe in god, some of us believe in the tooth fairy,(actually a better chance of getting something out of your wishes, and a lot easier on your knees).

  • franklin macdonald
    August 08, 2014 - 11:47

    Brave men and women have given their lives around this world so that we can have the freedom to speak our minds, protest for what we believe or do not believe in. Whether you are pro choice or pro life, every person who leaves a comment that these people should not be allowed to be here are throwing those sacrifices away as worthless. Shame on you.

    • Agreed
      August 08, 2014 - 18:31

      I totally agree with you. Pro-Choice are being hypocrites ... they want freedom of speech only to serve their views but want to bully and shut down anyone else who has a difference of opinion through verbal and physical violence.

    • Young Adult
      August 09, 2014 - 12:23

      I'm all for freedom of speech, however there is also a responsibility for people to realize showing horrible images to children is wrong. Make a fuss, stand out with written signs, or take the graphic images and use them in the proper forum where you aren't going to traumatize children. Anyone who thinks that is OK should be ashamed sir.

    • Skulander
      August 11, 2014 - 23:27

      Freedom of speech is hugely important but so is privacy and being free from harassment and inappropriate, unwanted images, especially when you don't expect them. These images aren't even accurate. They're there only for shock value. Whether or not one agrees with abortion, this is a private, personal matter.

  • twenty-something islander
    August 08, 2014 - 11:43

    Biological life (the only objective measure of life we presently have) begins at conception. If you are arguing this you are arguing science, I urge you to read the literature if you disagree. If ending life voluntarily is defined as murder, then abortion is murder. If murder is collectively deemed by society to be a criminal act then abortion must also be a crime. This is NOT a religious issue, both sides should stop making it one. If we are to fully legalize abortion and assisted hospital euthanasia, we need to have a collective conversation addressing the possibility of "legal exceptions to murder". Until then, if murder is "wrong" then so is abortion. As you may have guessed I am pro-life. I am always open to discussion and the possibility that someday I may turn pro-choice. But until the argument above is properly refuted my views are not likely to change. HOWEVER, I am EXTREMELY DISSAPOINTED by groups such as "Show the Truth" which attempt to convince the public of their opinion by relying on emotional showcases and fear tactics. No one likes to see dead babies. We get the point. Not only is it disrespectful to parents with young children and to mothers with past experiences of stillbirths, etc. but YOU ARE DELEGITIMIZING YOUR CAUSE. IF YOU ARE SERIOUS ABOUT STOPPING ABORTIONS, PACK YOUR POSTERS, GO HOME, AND HOPE PEOPLE HERE FORGET ABOUT THE SILLY CLOWNS YOU'VE MADE YOURSELVES OUT TO BE. It's quite possible you've pushed the public to the edge and your battle in PEI is already lost... Here's to hoping that is not yet the case!

    • DerpingTron
      August 08, 2014 - 17:58

      Its only murder if the victim is considered human by LAW, and in the case of abortions, unborn fetuses are not. Sorry, your whole argument was invalid.

    • Amanda
      August 08, 2014 - 18:42

      Extremely well said!!!!! EXACTLY how I feel! Well done, twenty-something islander!!!

    • Amanda
      August 09, 2014 - 08:54

      Twenty-something Islander, if you are concerned about abortion you need to check your facts. Countries which ban abortion have higher abortion rates than countries that do not. Banning abortion will not stop abortion, it will only create more deaths from illegal, unsafe abortions. What needs to be focused on is contraceptives and education.

  • Randy
    August 08, 2014 - 10:35

    It's comforting and convenient to avoid the truth by using euphemisms, deception, sophistry, and denial. General Eisenhower was spot on to make the citizens of Gotha tour the concentration camp that was near the city. I suppose seeing the effect of murder and human cruelty first hand was a little upsetting to a few of the people, but at least they got the point. The same holds true here. Killing the innocent is always wrong. Period. People need to stop hiding from the truth.

    • mark
      August 09, 2014 - 15:20

      Well said..The pro-choice would have us believe aborting a baby is no more violent then pulling a tooth...

    • Michelle
      August 12, 2014 - 10:53

      What "innocent" is being "killed" here, may I ask? ALL are conceived and born in sin. There are no innocents. If you consider that human, then it is NOT innocent. Humans are the worst blight on this planet, destroying, raping plundering its resources.

  • RALPH JOSEY
    August 08, 2014 - 10:33

    Free Choice does not exempt us from the inevitable concequences of our actions . . . LOVE is always the true answer . . . Abortionists know what they have done . . . they do not need to be reminded, the thoughts of what could have been will follow them all the days of their lives . . . praying for both sides of this controversial issue . . . My opinion Always choose life over death because regrets can haunt us for years to come

  • NONE
    August 08, 2014 - 10:25

    From what I heard this guy was trying to walk by and they kept blocking the way so he just kept walking. Not his fault that this group was not doing a peaceful protest. He was in his right since from the story I am getting was that the guy barley touched anyone and they fell to the ground trying to make a show and trying to hit the news again. The police and the paper did not talk to any of the students who were taking photos and have this document and were of course witnesses, Also the guardian should change the name of this article as it wasn't violent but was the protestors trying to get into the news. No statement from police has been issued at this time

  • Upset
    August 08, 2014 - 09:38

    There are lots of women that have lost babies & not by choice. Like myself and other women that have had stillbirths or miscarriages, these images have brought back painful memories & deep sadness of loss that we have experiences. Protestors definitely did not think about the women who didn't have a choice.

    • Katherine
      August 08, 2014 - 11:53

      I am so sorry for the losses you have suffered. There is no pain comparable to the loss of a child. I am also sorry that these horrible people have re-traumatized you. There is no excuse for it. You're exactly right, these protesters don't think about anyone except their own ridiculous agenda. I am all for parties of each side of the debate having the right to express their beliefs. but posting these disgusting signs in the general public, handing flyers out to children, and bringing their own children along to this circus just shows how they have absolutely no regard for anything other than shoving their own beliefs into everyone's face. It makes me incredibly angry that they can get away with this behavior.

    • Jennifer T
      August 13, 2014 - 06:44

      If they were reasonable people and actually cared about women (like you), their tactics would be different. You are merely acceptable collateral to them. Nobody's rights trump those of "the unborn", after all.

  • Sandyrjones333@verizon.net
    August 08, 2014 - 09:24

    Perhaps someone should give the family with 8 kids a brochure on birth control. Our fragile earth is overpopulated and torn apart with war because of it. We are decimating the other species of the planet at an unbelievable pace. Big families drain our resources and taxes and lead to huge suffering.

    • I Beg To Differ
      August 08, 2014 - 10:01

      I beg to differ , most large families support their own & birth control is their right . The problem in the world isn't a family with both mother & father raising them & living together . It's the unwed mothers not using birth control , loser fathers & expecting the self supporting people to pay for their carelessness .

  • NJ
    August 08, 2014 - 09:18

    I am shocked to see that no one has pointed out the fact that aside from the images being horrifically disturbing, they are wildly inaccurate!!! Anybody with a grade 10 science background knows that human fetuses are far from being that developed at 10 weeks. We more resemble tadpoles than humans at that stage.

  • WayneDrops
    August 08, 2014 - 08:32

    If only Islanders showed this much disgust when the anti-seal hunt crew comes down here and displays their radical views with pictures from the 80s of seals that have not been hunted in over 30 years...not much difference between those photos and these photos..only difference is that the anti-seal hunt bunch usually have some naked women rolling around in blood

    • franklin macdonald
      August 08, 2014 - 11:39

      Are you kidding me? You can actually compare a human life to a seals?

    • AC
      August 08, 2014 - 12:43

      The irony here is that many pro life people wouldn't bat an eye at a seal being killed for food or fur. They probably wear Canada Goose jackets with real coyote fur during the winter too. While I disagree with the tactics of PETA , (and famously Paul McCartney who violated laws by being in close proximity to seals- and was too ignorant to know he was in PEI and in fact not in Newfoundland) - the issue is that these people are protesting the needless killing of innocent animals. The pro life protestors are a nuisance and purposely looking to traumatize people and spread misinformation. Abortion is legal in Canada, and PEI's government is willfully ignoring this. No one is forcing anyone to agree with abortion, but ultimately it's not your body, and it's none of your business.

    • Amanda
      August 08, 2014 - 18:51

      Get a grip!!!!!

  • Disgusted
    August 08, 2014 - 08:23

    They say that they "have encountered similar confrontations at other protests in the past" yet they took their children to this one! Maybe child services should be investigating these people if they are willingly putting their children in a situation that they know could turn dangerous.

  • Fed up
    August 08, 2014 - 08:14

    These protesters have too much time -and money - on their hands...coming here pushing their terrible pictures on our children and women who have gone through miscarriages!! GUARDIAN...THEY ARE LOOKING FOR FREE PUBLICITY AND YOU KEEP STICKING THEIR IDIOTIC AACTIONS ON THE FRONT PAGE,,,,IGNORE THEM!!

  • Appalled they are allowed here
    August 08, 2014 - 08:01

    Why is this disgusting display allowed here. Why was such a controversial conference even allowed here in the first place. Is this the way people want to get their faces in the paper and on the news.

    • Amanda
      August 08, 2014 - 18:53

      Couldn't agree more!! This was a political and financial step that the UPEI president took.

    • What?
      August 09, 2014 - 12:32

      What's controversial about scientists and researchers presenting findings of their studies on abortion? Wouldn't the pro-life groups be interested to see if the data supported their claims? That would seem an easy way to swing the pendulum of public opinion to their side.

  • disturbing
    August 08, 2014 - 07:13

    These people should mind their own business. A woman's choice is ultimately her own. Sometimes decisions for her health must be made that she is unhappy with. While people have rights to protest, this is just wrong. The brochures are over the top. These people should return from where they are from. This was incited. If they were not here, this would not have happened.

  • Notaprotestor
    August 08, 2014 - 07:07

    I am pro-life, but do not agree with these people. They're using biblical arguments, so I'll counter with one. Christians are told to speak the truth, which they are doing, but more specifically, they are told to speak the truth IN LOVE. There is no way they could consider this speaking the truth in love.

  • Bonnie
    August 08, 2014 - 07:05

    Iam ashamed of the university of prince edward island to allow people to stand out with pictures of dead babies. for innocent children to see.i think its up to the parents to explain , not when a small child see a disturbing picture

    • charlottetown resident
      August 08, 2014 - 10:06

      I think they were protesting against a conference UPEI was holding for pro-choice. Maybe I'm wrong but I don't believe UPEI were the ones that called them here.

  • mike
    August 08, 2014 - 06:58

    The simple truth is everyone has their won view on this. No one should push their on view of something on someone else. I think its ok if you have a medical issue or rape. I don't agree if you were consenting and you got pregnant. I think both parents need to pull up their socks and take care of a child. If you want to do the fun part then you need to deal. This is my view and maybe the view of some others but I have no right to tell someone else what they can and can't do. Personally the protestors should be arrested for propaganda and for showing such graphic material to children.

    • Paul
      August 08, 2014 - 16:44

      Actually, in a democracy, "pushing your view" is exactly what you do. This is a matter of fundamental human rights being violated in the name of "choice". It's perfectly legitimate to push for a change in law and to oppose those who push for unfettered access to abortion, which is the killing of an innocent human being.

  • Realistic
    August 08, 2014 - 06:57

    Whether you are pro or anti abortion...I am sorry we as parents of children and young children do have a right to be totally disgusted at the graphic pictures that they were displaying. Our children should not of been subjected to them. If it is ok for them to see those them why the heck is PEI so upset over sex shops and strip joints. Protests need to be held where we as parents can avoid it with small children. Come on a teenage girl cried because someone was shoved to the ground...is she that sheltered and never seen any thing like this before. She does go to school right.

  • AMAZED
    August 08, 2014 - 06:50

    Must be nice for some wing nuts . Come to PEI with the kids to protest and push their bible and enlighten Islanders while they are here. Most people on this Island are living hand to mouth , your lucky it was only a push and not a broken jaw as is often in the headlines of this paper many times .

  • Sad kid is Sad
    August 08, 2014 - 06:33

    Nothing like a family vacation to the abortion protest! That kid looks bloody miserable.

  • Where is the line drawn?
    August 08, 2014 - 05:47

    Everyone has the right to protest but there are laws around it and there are lines that should not be crossed. This topic is a touchy one but one that needs to be talked about in our communities and in government to find the best way to help all women of PEI. These protesters have the right to protoest but handing out postcards and having signs with these graphic images is crossing the line in my opinion. A child that is driving with their parents and sees this at a very young age is not appropiate.

  • Think About It
    August 08, 2014 - 05:21

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion. With that being said, I don't blatantly run around screaming I am pro-choice and rubbing it in peoples faces. It is an adult matter, meant for adults, not children. It is good to see that the Guardian decided to ONLY focus on the protesters side of the story and not that of the individual being accused of assault. More than one side to a story and I think a lot of people forget that in their close minded, one track mind mentalities. I certainly hope the ACTUAL truth of the incident comes out.

  • R MacD
    August 08, 2014 - 05:06

    Release that young man and thank him for my kids who were subjected to all the BS they were forcing us to look at. Go back to Ontario. You are bigots! Against abortions.... Why don't you explain to a young girl who was raped by a family member and gotten pregnant why she has to suffer even more because 'abortion is wrong' Or a woman who was forced, or maybe a woman is sick with cancer and has to make a choice. I may not believe that abortion should be a form of birth control or used lightly, but it has its place and Islanders should have easier access to it.

  • Deeply offended
    August 08, 2014 - 02:26

    These narrow minded people who can't see past their own beliefs hurt a lot of people today. Even my teenaged children said that most people who have an abortion don't really want to do it but that it is what seems the best of two choices. Never easy. And I felt horrified for the people who were emotionally traumatized by these people today. They have no right forcing their views on others. They aren't the ones pregnant. This is not as simple an issue at all as they make it out to be. I spoke with one woman and tried to explain the trauma they could have triggered in women who have abortions, miscarriages, stillborn baby. She yelled murder! Its murder! This is the truth! How does this help anyone? It's unnecessary to show such violent photos in public when not everyone wants to see them. We should be able to choose what our eyes see. Not what these provocative protestors force in our face on a Thursday afternoon. Scare tactics are not peaceful or loving. It comes off as aggressive and makes my stomach turn even more when I think about religion.

    • Paul
      August 08, 2014 - 16:46

      I have every right to push my views. In a democracy, everyone does. Abortion is the killing of an innocent human being, and if that makes you uncomfortable, good! Maybe your conscience has been activated.

    • PPL, MOT
      August 08, 2014 - 21:23

      Paul, supporting policies that allow children to live in poverty is also a crime, an ethical crime (did you know that PEI has the second highest child poverty rate in Canada?!) and yet, these protesters seem more interested in what hasn't been born yet, than helping the needy already living in this often-miserable world!!

  • johnny nextdoor
    August 08, 2014 - 00:37

    You never know the reasons why someone is getting an abortion. Or the pain on the inside they have because of getting one, why judge them for making the hardest choice they have to face. PEI is far to close minded and judgemental. I think its time to stop trying to control and start trying to respect, and support one another. honestly how does it effect you if someone you have never meet has an abortion. Using disturbing and inaccurate pictures to get your point across is pathetic and ridiculous.

  • Abort Abort
    August 07, 2014 - 23:40

    These protesters need to find a hobby and abort the protest. It's a choice, end of story.

  • don
    August 07, 2014 - 23:39

    John Doe. murder no how you look at it is still MURDER.

    • Cat
      August 08, 2014 - 08:18

      Agree fully.

  • John Doe
    August 07, 2014 - 22:36

    Abortion is better than babies being born addicted to drugs, then the government giving the parents welfare for more drugs and new iphones...

  • Joe Blow
    August 07, 2014 - 22:00

    Abortion should ALWAYS be pro choice for the female that is pregnant!! If she was raped and doesn't want to raise a rape-child...its her choice to abort the baby. If she was pregnant and has no way to support a baby, then it is her choice to abort the baby. The world is over populated as it is....there is no need to force people to have children if they are not ready to support it or simply do not want a child in their lives. If Canada is a so-called "free country" then Canadians should feel "free" to make whatever decision they like in regards to abortion. The posters and graphic signs are way too much.....nobody should be forced to see that. Shame on these protestors.

  • Anger first
    August 07, 2014 - 21:51

    It saddens me that the first reaction people have when they don't believe in something is anger. I hear lots of rumors that these protesters handed out pamphlets with graphic pictures to children, some as young as 4 years of age. So here is my question, where were their parents or care takers? No stranger should ever be able to get that close to your child. I do not support abortion, do not believe my tax dollar should pay for it. However, if someone chooses to do so I am not going to show hatred toward them. Lots of negative comments in the social media probably played a hand in this outcome. Parents it is up to you to protect your children. Don't want them seeing it? Then avoid it. Make sure your children know never to allow a stranger within reach of them. That is more scary to me then the pictures. That being said, I heard they did eventually put the signs down.

    • Passerby
      August 07, 2014 - 22:35

      It was pretty hard to shelter my children from these "strangers" actually! When you're driving your 8 and 5 year old to the cari pool and all they see out their windows are protestor with photos that would not be allowed to be shown in a pg movie let alone the streets of a city filled with children trying to enjoy their summer. These photos have sparks questions that I do not believe should be asked nor answered at that age.

    • Upset Mother
      August 08, 2014 - 07:58

      I agree with "Passerby". Young children should not be exposed to these images. It is "my" choice as a parent when "I" discuss these issues with my child/children. You have now taken that choice away from me. Had I known the protestors were on University Ave., I would have taken another route.

    • concerned mother
      August 08, 2014 - 18:10

      I was on my way to get groceries with my 5 year old and 3 year old....wasn't planning on them seeing such nasty/traumatizing pictures...as far as protecting kids from " strangers" , these people were going up and handing their pamphlets to whomever answered the door, whether adult or young child....If they are trying to spread their message, spread their message to adults not young kids. Don't force it on people and MAKE them see these horrible images. ALL you are accomplishing is making people talk, but not in support but against what you are trying to convey....My kids did not deserve to see such horrible sights. As a parent I do try to PROTECT them from all unneccessary bad things/ images - there is so much of it in todays society / media - but how do you protect them from something like this? ALL I was doing was driving through peaceful Charlottetown enjoying a nice summers day with my kids.... I think the police need to step in and remove them from our Island, protect the innocent from being corrupted by all this...

    • PPL, MOT
      August 08, 2014 - 21:29

      Passerby, Upset and Concerned; May I suggest using this opportunity as a chance to have a rich and engaging conversation with your children about critical literacy? My twins and I had an excellent discussion about why some people (in this case, the graphic poster-wielding protesters) only want to share one side of the story, and why it is important to examine ALL sides before coming to a conclusion. We've spent the past three days now talking about women's rights, and it's been quite lovely to watch my children formulate their own ideas about this very sensitive and important topic. (They've both come to the conclusion that although abortion is a horrible choice, it is one that is sometimes necessary, and that ultimately, the choice belongs to the woman, and not to a bunch of strangers.) I know it's a hard conversation, but don't let the protesters win -- take control of the situation, and use it as a learning opportunity with your kids. Good luck! :D

  • Why?
    August 07, 2014 - 21:49

    Obviously people who are pro-choice aren't interested in having them here (I mean, they don't really have much sway in my opinion, 20% of them are a single family and most are from Ontario), but the kicker is how many people have commented that they're against abortion and want these folks gone.

  • Elle Joraco
    August 07, 2014 - 21:38

    I support people's right to protest, and express their opinion. HOWEVER, I do not support people's "right" to subject others, especially children, to obscene and graphic imagery. Why must we have warnings on tv shows and videos if people are allowed to flaunt gory pictures in public? I feel for parents, and for women who have suffered miscarriages or stillborn babies, to be subjected to that kind of imagery is no doubt traumatic (I have to wonder if the car accident caused by the signs today on University ave was as a result of something similar to this). My heart goes out to all the parents, people who have lost an infant, and anyone who was emotionally or psychologically affected by being forced to witness unwanted, inappropriate, disrespectful images today (and tomorrow)

  • same story
    August 07, 2014 - 20:59

    The gentle isle , don't agree with someone put a thumpen on them and all the fools think it is a great thing!

  • Karen
    August 07, 2014 - 20:51

    Look I'm dead against abortions how ever there was no need of that explicit, posters marched on university ave. I ha e a 6 year old and a 9 year old and my 6 year old is asking why they are hurting babies cutting them up! She was crying and I was pissed to say the least, as I had to keep telling her to close her eyes while we r going to the dollar store like what is this world coming to? NOW TRYING TO EXPLAINE THIS TO A 6 YEAR OLD IS HARD, THIS IS SOMETHING SHE SHOULD LEARN LATER ON IN HIGHSCHOOL! IM CATHOLIC AND THIS IS WRONG AND I DONT WANT TO SEE THIS AGAIN AND HAVE TO GET MY FAMILY TO XLOAE THIER EYES NORE DOBI WANT TO VIEW THIS .

    • Cat
      August 08, 2014 - 08:30

      I agree with you. I'm against abortion. I am not overly religious but I do believe that when a baby is conceived that once it starts growing inside the womb that it is a living thing and to kill it would be murder. I understand that accidents can happen (rape, faulty condoms or birth control), don't get me wrong. The only reason I see abortion as a positive thing is for rape cases, and a reason why I see that PEI should have an abortion clinic. As for consentful sex, where a condom or pill didn't work, that is the people's responsibility because they DID engage with the sexual act, most likely knowing full well that those attempts at being safe are not always 100%. After seeing rallies FOR abortion on PEI I am happy to see at least one for against abortion. As I know I am not the only one who is is against it on PEI....... ........But this was a bit much. Yes, people should see what abortion looks like but when it is in such a public area where many kids go past it is not right. They do not need to see or learn this just yet. They should have just given out "folded pamphlets" where the adults could open to view and not have the children see. And as for children being given the handouts- that is just wrong. As for the signs on the street- a little less graphic would keep people more calm and less angry and maybe that would allow people to at least THINK about what they think of abortion instead of focusing on the pictures that just make them mad against the protesters.

  • one angry mom
    August 07, 2014 - 20:50

    It is unfortunate that what these protesters consider peaceful...became anything but peaceful....but what these peaceful protesters and even law enforcement did not see today was the dozens of children traumatized by these pictures. I have heard from many friends today to stay away from this part of Charlottetown so my children would not be frightened to the point of tears because they seen these disturbing pictures. University Avenue is the busiest road in the city,during old home week...they are lucky they haven't caused an accident! How peaceful is that????Are these protesters not concerned with our living children????

  • Karen
    August 07, 2014 - 20:44

    I must say yes I'm dead against abortion s how ever ,my 6 year old asked mommy why r people doing this its gross, killing babies taking thierbheads ,arms and legs off ,which I totally agree . I told her to close her eyes as I drove by, all she did was cry...now at 6 years old I had to explain something that she should have to learn till she is way older ! the posters were way too much and outta line . we all get the point its wrong . they all need to go home !

  • Jerica Devos
    August 07, 2014 - 20:38

    Seriously? "It was all too much for children in the anti-abortion protest group" What about it being TOO MUCH for the children this group handed pamphlets to. Or too much for the woman who just had a misscarriege and had to face these horrific photos. They should be thankful all he got was a shove!

    • go home
      August 07, 2014 - 21:44

      listen here!! you protesters I understand your right to speech blah blah blah.. but when it comes to us parents on pei having to explain to our children about your graphic signs you are not welcome here. I cant even imagine how someone that has had a miscarriage having to see these pictures.how much emotional turmoil this causes. go the heck home!!!!! you obviously dont care about anyone! as much as you say you do.

    • Lindsay
      August 07, 2014 - 22:48

      Exactly! I was thinking the same thing.

  • Say What?
    August 07, 2014 - 20:35

    I certainly do not approve of what the young man at issue did today. It was not appropriate. Neither do I approve of the group's activities. However, if their intent is to be provocative, then they should not be surprised if someone is provoked. I cannot imagine why they would want to expose their children to such a possibility? Perhaps the answer lies in Mr. Gordon's comment indicating that he is not sure if he has three or four children with him on this venture. That rather butresses the pro-choice chestnut that the anti-choice people only care about the unborn.

    • PPL, MOT
      August 08, 2014 - 21:32

      Lol, so true! Either that, or his social conscience is stronger than his mathematical abilities (4 is a pretty high number to count to, after all!)

  • islander73
    August 07, 2014 - 20:18

    Boy, the Guardian really wants this to be a massive violent scene. A guy who came to PEI to cause trouble was pushed and fell over. Oh dear. Did he even need a bandaid?

  • Stephanie
    August 07, 2014 - 20:12

    It's disgusting, thinking they have the right, that it is ok, to have disturbing pictures blown up, out for children to see. Where are the rights for the children that havent been aborted, to grow up as innocently, as long as possible! It's our right to protect their little minds.

  • Grammy
    August 07, 2014 - 20:03

    As we drove down University Ave. this morning I wondered how many of these pro-life protestors speaking for the unborn child have young grandchildren .Who among them are thinking about the child already born being tramatized by these graphic signs. Children too young to understand any explanations....Who protects them from you? Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but they shouldn't be allowed to force it on others regardless of which side of the line you stand on.

  • WhatASham
    August 07, 2014 - 19:57

    "It was all too much for children in the anti-abortion protest group, as teenage girls wept while seated on the grass, surrounded by shocked-looking adults." ???? These children were so fragile that they couldn't cope with this but you show pictures of dead babies to our kids! What a bunch of b.s.!

    • Thank you for acknowledging the truth
      August 07, 2014 - 22:47

      That's exactly it - pro-abortion results in dead babies. It is unpleasant seeing dead babies who have no voice because they were aborted/terminated/killed.

  • Too Much
    August 07, 2014 - 19:57

    the article refers to teenage girls crying on the grass because it was too much. Wonder if it will traumatized as much as some of the children that rode by their graphic images on the way to the mall earlier in the day

  • Go back home
    August 07, 2014 - 19:41

    Just go back home! Or better yet, try coming onto my property with your disgusting signs and religious views. The big difference is the group meeting on abortion is meeting behind closed door sharing their opinions. This fools feel its alright to sit out in public and spew their rhetoric. If there is a god, I believe one of his most important rules is don't judge lest the be judged, funny how bible thumpers forget that one!

    • You're calling the kettle black
      August 07, 2014 - 20:05

      You're passing quite a bit of judgement yourself in a bullying manner. If those supporting pro-abortion have rights to freedom of speech and public demonstrations which they do on a frequent basis in PEI, so do those people who support pro-life. Respect has to come both ways. Pro-life people aren't physically attacking others and shoving them to the ground. They are on public property and have a legal right to do so. Seeing a visual of the truth can be shocking, but it's truth. A dead fetus is a dead child.

    • Paul
      August 07, 2014 - 20:59

      They were in public, not on anyone's property. Is that a new rule on free speech, that it has to be behind closed doors? A lot of namecalling for someone who doesn't judge...

    • A mom
      August 08, 2014 - 14:09

      Paul, Actually they started their protest by putting disgusting images on my front door! That is private property! I have 2 children and have had 5 pregnancies- I have lost 3 children and it was devastating for our family! These images brought back terrible memories for me and I had a break down! So, I think what people are trying to say, is that the group who are pro abortion are quietly talking at upei and interviewing with local news stations. I have a choice to watch or listen and have my children hear or see what they have to say. However When I came home to these horrible pictures on my door, my choice to see these images was taken away ! My daughter would have been destroyed to see these images. I'm not heret to judge them for what they believe but I am here to say they are doing wrong by showing these graphic images in public! They are violating people's choice! I think there should be a law against showi g these graphic images in public! If it was porn, sex, drugs.. I think the people of pei would be more upset!

  • Funny
    August 07, 2014 - 19:20

    Must have been some push for him to forget whether he had "three or four" kids with him.

    • Sherry
      August 09, 2014 - 12:30

      The graphic pictures disturb? Isn't that the point? Show the TRUTH? Now that you know the truth why not do something about it?? Graphic pictures have always been used - the holocaust, wars, cigarette packages - "If you can't condone the pictures, how do you condone the act?"