Anti-abortion ViolenceMain article: Anti-abortion violence
In a number of cases, abortion providers and these facilities have been subjected to various forms of violence, including murder, attempted murder, kidnapping, stalking, assault, arson, and bombing. Anti-abortion violence has been classified by governmental and scholarly sources as terrorism. Only a small fraction of those opposed to abortion commit violence, often rationalizing their actions as justifiable homicide or defense of others, committed in order to protect the lives of fetuses.
In the United States, four physicians who performed abortions – David Gunn, John Britton, Barnett Slepian, and George Tiller – have been murdered. Also murdered, in the U.S. and Australia, have been other personnel at abortion clinics, including receptionists and security guards such as James Barrett, Shannon Lowney, Lee Ann Nichols, and Robert Sanderson. Attempted murders have also taken place in the United States and Canada, Hundreds of bombings, arsons, acid attacks, invasions, and incidents of vandalism against abortion providers have also occurred. Notable perpetrators of anti-abortion violence include Eric Robert Rudolph, Scott Roeder, Shelley Shannon, and Paul Jennings Hill, the first person to be executed in the United States for murdering an abortion provider.
Legal protection of access to abortion has been brought in to some countries where abortion is legal. These laws typically seek to protect abortion clinics from obstruction, vandalism, picketing, and other actions, or to protect patients and employees of such facilities from threats and harassment.
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