By Editorial Staff
Published June 16, 2000
By Lawrence W. Salberg, Jr. in a letter to FLORIDA TODAY
Dear Florida Today:
Is Patricia Windle, the former abortion clinic owner in Melbourne, threatening to release the names of women who have had abortions at Aware Woman? One might begin to think so after reading her comments printed in Florida Today last Monday. At the least, they are veiled threats.
I thought abortion-providers prided themselves on fighting for a woman’s right to privacy. But when Patricia Windle demands, “pay-back time” from “women who have been so beautifully served” and “have become solid middle class and upper class citizens,” it stinks of extortion.
Those once abortion-minded women have gone on with their lives, gotten married, obtained positions of good social standing, and don’t wish to relive that horrible moment. Regardless of your view of abortion, the undeniable social stigma attached to the act prevents all but a stoic few from revealing it.
Abortion clinic owners reassure women seeking abortions that their privacy will be protected, going so far as to illegally instruct them to cover their license plates of their car and to use umbrellas to prevent protesters from taking their picture. But now, when it has become financially and politically expedient, they don’t hesitate to use threatening tactics. They have those women’s names forever in their databases.
Windle’s menacing words unmask her first-hand knowledge of who these women are today, almost as if she has tracked them throughout their lives. I almost wonder if it would be beyond her ethical limits to phone these women personally and beg for their financial support? Few women would complain, for to do so would be to be “outed.”
I somehow doubt these women knew that they would be extorted years later by Windle and her cohorts.
Lawrence W. Salberg, Jr.
See another abortion-related extortion story: Florida abortionist indicted for extortion.
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