John Burt, an anti-abortion extremist and convicted child molester, will be released on a $10,000 bond pending appeal of his conviction. Burt, 66, was sentenced this month to more than 18 years for molesting a 15-year-old girl who was in his care at his so-called home for “unwed” mothers, Our Father’s House. Under the terms of his bond, Burt must remain in Santa Rosa County, Florida, he must register as a sex offender, and he is not allowed to be alone with children, according to WEAR-TV in Pensacola, Florida.
In the early 1980s, John Burt, who was the Regional Director of Rescue America at the time, was at the center of disruptions at the Pensacola, Florida clinics. In 1986, Burt led an invasion into the Ladies Center Clinic in Pensacola, which led to his arrest and conviction along with Joan Andrews Bell, an associate of James Kopp, who was convicted of assassinating Dr. Barnett Slepian. Joseph Scheidler was touring at the time on his book, “99 Ways to Close an Abortion Clinic.” Scheidler was on the lawn in front of the clinic at the time of the invasion. This incident was the impetus for the NOW v. Scheidler case that went to the Supreme Court twice and is still in litigation.
In 1993, Burt was leading a Rescue America protest outside the second Pensacola clinic when an Our Father's House volunteer, Michael Griffin, shot and killed Dr. David Gunn in the rear of the clinic. Burt was also an associate of Paul Hill, who murdered Dr. Bayard Britton and volunteer escort James Barrett outside the Ladies Center Clinic in Pensacola in 1994. Burt was videotaped helping Paul Hill identify Dr. Britton outside the clinic in the weeks before Hill shot and killed Dr. Britton and his clinic escort.
In the past, Our Father’s House had the support of even national organizations; for example, Judie Brown, president of the American Life League, wrote a letter praising both Burt and Our Father’s House.
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .