Pennsylvania Democratic State Representative Brian Sims describes himself in his Twitter bio as an LGBTQ activist, RuPaul's Drag Race fanatic, and Little Mermaid enthusiast. He should add "harasser of children and elderly women" to that resume.
Sims thinks pro-lifers are "scum," and he certainly treats them like it. In recent weeks, the elected official has gotten into the habit of stalking around his local Planned Parenthood clinic, looking for peaceful pro-life activists to deride and intimidate. Here he is berating an elderly woman on camera for several minutes. Here he is accosting a group of teenagers and offering 100 dollars to anyone who can identify them. He then demands that another kid provide his "name and address." To summarize, Brian Sims is a coward and a bully. Now he's going to be taught a lesson.
Last night, I suggested on Twitter that we organize a massive rally at that very same Planned Parenthood in Philadelphia. I thought it would be good to show Sims and everyone else that we are not going to sit back submissively while pro-lifers are abused for speaking out in defense of the unborn. Happily, this rally is now becoming a reality. Minutes after I sent that tweet, a number of pro-life groups reached out to help organize. Several prominent conservative voices expressed their desire to be a part of the effort. Hundreds of people said they would like to attend.
So, at 11 AM this Friday, I will be at that clinic on 1144 Locust St in Philadelphia alongside Abby Johnson, Lila Rose, Graham Allen, and many others. If Sims wants to show up with his camera again, any one of us would be more than happy to engage with him. I know he prefers to target elderly women and teenage girls, but now he'll have the opportunity to pick on someone his own size. The lesson here is simple: If you try to intimidate us into silence, we will only get louder. Bullying tactics will achieve the exact opposite of what you intended. That's the takeaway.
It should be noted that Brian Sims is the catalyst of the upcoming demonstration, and part of the point is to respond peacefully yet forcefully to his bullying. But it also should be noted that the fundamental and underlying purpose is to stand for life. Unborn children suffer far worse abuses than any abuses that a pro-life activist or demonstrator might experience. Our plight is nothing compared to theirs. The most we have to fear is the angry, red-faced, spittle-flecked rantings of pro-abortion fanatics. On the other hand, the unborn are poisoned, stabbed, and torn apart in massive numbers every year. We are rallying to their aid, first and foremost.
But we have Mr. Sims to thank for getting this particular ball rolling. And I am glad that we are doing more just than tweeting angrily for a change. The internet can be a fine tool — it's what allowed us to organize this event in the span of a few hours — but it's high time that we emerge from behind the screens and actually engage in three dimensions. Too often, the few who venture to the frontlines of these cultural battles are left to suffer the consequences alone. We are happy to tweet our support for them, and to shake our heads mournfully at the abuses heaped on them, but we remain off on the periphery, out of sight. At least for one day, on Friday, that will change. Hopefully it becomes a trend.