Most people would back away from anyone threatening them while they stood for preborn children outside an abortion clinic – but not pro-life sidewalk counselors like Michele Herzog. Michele represents a number of pro-life warriors who faithfully stand as the last defense to cry out for children about to be killed by abortion. Every one is a hero and should be commended.
In the interest of full disclosure, I know Michele Herzog very well. We both reached out to women for years outside South Florida abortion clinics. She and I also had the unfortunate opportunity to attend the funeral of a woman who died from a legal abortion – Carolina Gutierrez. I wrote about that experience to some degree here.
Michele has experienced abortion, so she has compassion for the women seeking abortion. But after becoming aware of the reality of what abortion does to the child, she now also takes an unrelenting stand for the babies. She has been the recipient of all sorts of threats over her many years outside abortion facilities. But Michele remained unyielding even when rocks were being thrown at her. She also stood up to an abortionist who had given her obscene gestures.
Often, sidewalk counselors stand alone and a majority of the response they receive is negative – yet they return day after day after day. I am aware of this both because I know some personally and because I follow many on Facebook, reading their daily reports. Many share stories of how they are mistreated – sometimes by law enforcement, sometimes by abortion workers, sometimes by patients, and sometimes even by citizens just passing by.
It was one of these stories that prompted me to write this piece. Herzog and others were crying out for a baby whose mother had come to the EPOC abortion facility in Florida. She wrote about what took place:
This woman came with her abortion bound friend to the Epoc abortuary on Saturday and was as vile and wicked as they come. She laughed and encouraged her friend to go through with killing her baby and then left her there. Sandra and I wanted to make sure to plead with her one more time to do what she could to get her friend out and to save the innocent baby, so we waited at the corner
When I first got there she told me she was going to kick my *** if I didn’t move away. I had given the ministry phone to Sandra’s daughter [another pro-lifer present] so she could take pictures and video throughout the afternoon and in this video the woman in the car was ready to jump out after Sandra’s daughter.
In a calm manner, Michele asked the woman if she was issuing a threat and reiterated her desire to see her friend’s baby saved from abortion. Michele then pointed out to the woman that the clinic’s owner has no license. James Pendergraft’s medical license has been suspended indefinitely by the state medical board and he was recently arrested in South Carolina for operating an illegal mobile abortion clinic there.
Instead of going back to the abortion clinic and warning her friend or simply driving away, the abortion supporter picked up a gallon jug of water she had in her car and hurled it at Michele.
Michele Herzog later told Live Action News:
We tell every abortion bound woman and their companions of Pendergraft’s arrest and that they found him with instruments with old blood and tissue on them. We tell them of the mobile abortion clinic he was running and the drugs found. Two couples left that day and chose life for their babies, but the rest of the women… none of that seemed to faze them.
These kind of incidents have become regular events for pro-life activists. Last week, another pro-life group faced opposition from an abortion-supporting citizen who illegally removed the group’s signs during an awareness campaign on a public overpass. The intolerance of advocates of “personal choice” has become increasingly more vocal and at many times violent.
But Michele and other pro-life sidewalk counselors are concerned about saving the lives of innocent children. While many people would have flinched or ducked at being threatened by an angry abortion supporter, sidewalk counselors like Michele stand in the face of opposition and don’t back down. This is why I admire the courage of so many pro-life activists across the country.
Note: Article photos used with permission from Michele Herzog