Two years ago today, Dr. George Tiller was shot to death in his church by anti-abortion activist Scott Roeder. Tiller was a Republican, a beloved physician in Wichita, Kansas, and one of the few abortion providers in that part of the country. For decades, Tiller had been threatened and harassed by anti-abortion groups for his work, and even survived an assassination attempt in 1993 after being shot twice. At his trial, Roeder argued that his crime was “morally justified” because he was “protecting the unborn.”
Last Friday, another anti-abortion extremist attempted to murder abortion providers in the name of God. A Wisconsin man, Ralph Lang, was arrested and charged with intent to murder doctors at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Madison. Lang had been arrested once before in 2007 for menacing nurses and doctors at the same facility:
Ralph Lang, 63, of Marshfield, was staying at a Motel 6 when his .38-caliber handgun discharged into an unoccupied room across the hall, according to the federal criminal complaint.[...] Lang, who was arrested for reckless endangerment, told police that he had a gun “to lay out abortionists because they are killing babies,” the complaint said.
Lang told police that he planned to go to a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic the following morning to find the doctor who was doing the abortions and shoot him in the head, the complaint said. He was charged with attempting to injure and intimidate in violation of the federal access statute, according to U.S. Attorney John Vaudreuil.
A nurse at Planned Parenthood in Madison said she is familiar with Lang, and that she saw him outside the facility last week, according to the complaint. Lang was arrested in 2007 outside Planned Parenthood, telling an officer at the time that the “Bible states that anyone involved in abortion should be executed.”