Murder of physician ‘deplorable’

Slaying of abortion doctor condemned by both sides

Both sides of the abortion debate condemned the shooting of abortion doctor George Tiller on Sunday in Kansas, while abortion foes said they feared a backlash against them.

In Grand Junction, abortion foes prayed for Tiller as they gathered during their pro-life banquet after late arrivals told others about the shooting, said Miles LaHue of Mesa County Right to Life.

“We mentioned him in our prayers” at the banquet, LaHue said. “Obviously, pro-life people don’t condone any kind of violence like that, so we think it’s a horrible thing.”

Tiller was mourned by Planned Parenthood as “an integral part of our community, and his loss is felt by all of us. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and those close to him who are suffering a personal tragedy.”

It’s too soon to speculate on the reasons for the shooting, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains spokeswoman Monica McCafferty said Tuesday, adding that all sides of the abortion debate “condemn intimidation and violence.”

Archbishop Arthur Tafoya of the Pueblo Diocese of the Roman Catholic Church called the shooting “deplorable” and said that among those who are “truly pro-life, life
is precious, from the beginning of life at conception until its natural end.”

Planned Parenthood lauded Tiller as the “epitome of high-quality medical care underscored by deep compassion for his patients” and said he was “continually harassed by abortion opponents.”

Abortion opponents will be blamed, LaHue said.

“We know it’s going to hurt the movement,” he said.

There has been no abortion clinic in Mesa County since 2000, when Dr. Joseph M. Sherman retired and closed the clinic at 740 Horizon Court.

According to the Planned Parenthood Web site, the nearest abortion providers are in Glenwood Springs and Durango.


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