Toward the Use of Force
By Shelley Shannon
People have been asking me to write about things that convinced me that
God wanted me to use force, and now I feel obligated to do so (Thanks,
Michael Bunch). I'm sure God leads each of us individually in ways we
understand, until we know certain truths to our own satisfaction. So I doubt
my experience is like anyone else's, except for the fact that at some point
we became willing to pray about the use of force with an open mind.
In my case it probably began in about 1989, when I heard from
different people in various places, arguments for the use of force. At
that time is was almost entirely talk of force against killing centers
(bombing, arson, vandalism) and not the killers themselves. I couldn't
seem to get away from the debate or the topic, and the Word of God began
to convince me that God wasn't the tame tabby in the cage I'd imagined.
I heard about use of force in church sermons, in my personal
devotional time alone with God, and from the most godly Christians I
knew. Once a couple of pro-lifers from Southern Oregon went to some
rescues in other states. One of them later told me he'd learned, while
gone, that the people in prison for bombing believed they did what God
called them to. I said, "I wouldn't doubt it."
I listened to a Skip Robokoff tape where he first prayed that God
would speak through him. He talked about the high places mentioned in
the Bible, altars of pagans where children were sacrificed to satan and
much innocent blood was shed. He compared it to abortion facilities. He
said those high places had to be torn down in the physical realm as well
as by prayer in the heavenlies. Anyway, that's what it seemed to me God
was saying, and I had been learning on that very topic at that time and
was convinced that the spiritual and physical were tied together.
We can see it with our own lives. Later in Wichita in 1991 it seemed
Skip was insisting that we should tear down the places by blocking the
doors or something. I read some Bonhoeffer books and was very
impressed with his theology. I couldn't imagine his killing a fly, much
less attempting to kill a person, even if it was Hitler. I began to compare
abortion to the Nazi holocaust.
Can we really stop murderers like Hitler, Saddam Hussien, or abortionists,
by voting right? By educating people? I pictured Christians blocking access
to an extermination facility in Hitler's Germany. Maybe they would save
some lives, but they would soon be removed and dealt with, and the killing
would continue. Now if someone were to bomb those gas chambers...
Babies are people. Abortionists are mass murderers. Abortion mills
are death camps. That's the absolute truth. Try as they do, pro-abortion
people still haven't been able to change reality.
In 1991 or thereabouts, I looked up news clippings and articles on
abortion facility bombings and arsons at libraries, and began to learn
quite a bit on the subject. I read and agreed with an anonymous essay on
pro-life direct action (ethics/conscience), as well as Rev. Michael
Bray's book "Actors in the Kingdom -- Not Clappers in the Audience"
(or, When Bricks Bleed, I'll Cry).
I don't remember the order in which all these things happened, but I
think I know the turning point. It was in the summer, perhaps 1990 or
1991. I had prayed about the use of force and was learning a lot about
it. One nice day I was standing out in my garden, using the hose to
water things and enjoying the sun. I wondered to myself: If Jesus were
walking the earth today as a man, what would He do about abortion? What
came to mind was Jesus casting out them that sold in the temple,
overturning their tables ("vandalism?"), saying, "How dare you make
merchandise of my Father's temple." (That's the quote as I thought it. I
don't know if it's exactly what the Word says.) I recalled that our
bodies are His temple, and that the babies' bodies are being made
I also wondered about the proper way to love the least of these,
Christ's little brothers and sisters, as myself; how to really be a
neighbor. Surely I would be willing to do more than block a door or
stand around with a sign if they were about to kill me.
They kept increasing the penalty for blocking the doors anyway. At
five years of prison time, eight more times blocking doors would have
been a life sentence.
In church the pastor once said, "What would you do if you knew you only
had 3 days left to live?" I instantly thought of burning down killing
centers, as many as possible, as fast as I could! We nice, civilized
American Christians don't want to make waves or live in the danger zone,
but risking your life is a good Christian thing. We aren't the kind to
shrink back, compromise, or be cowardly or love our own lives above
other people's. Anyway, I hope not. "Help us, God."
(What follows is what Shelley had to say about her sentencing, it is
included because it is part of the original letter. DS)
Judge Waller said he'd look over the pre-sentence report that pro-life
attorney John Broderick sent him about me, and the letters people sent.
And they remain on file. I didn't see much of the letters or the report,
but Jay was quite impressed, and one of the things he pointed out to
Waller was that I was certainly not alone in my beliefs. I did really
lousy. I was shaking, standing there in front of everyone, and I
sounded like a frog. Plus I said I'd never again bomb another place!
Channel 12 news was merciful, and the other two channels weren't too
horrible. The Eagle was pretty bad, as usual. The only interview I gave
was to Spencer Heinz of the Oregonian (Oregon's state-wide paper). I
haven't seen his article yet, though.
The sentencing breakdown: 9 years 8 months in the state prison for the
attempted murder and aggravated assault, plus one more year here in the
county jail for the contempt charge. If I'm a good prisoner, I'll get
20% of the time off. Also, I've already done almost 8 1/2 months (less
that 8 years left to go, with good time.)
Nola (the prosecutor) did ask for double the maximum, plus a $300,000
fine, so it could have been far worse. My attorney asked for the
minimum, but it wasn't a whole lot less than the maximum anyway. The
contempt charge is being appealed....
To e-mail Shelley click here Put Shelley's name in subject line and include a U. S. Postal address for a reply
Another baby murdered by a babykilling abortionist.
Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man.
Numbers 35:33 So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are:for blood it defileth the land: and the land cannot be cleansed of theblood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it.
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P.O. Box 16611
Chesapeake VA 23328
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