Taking on Goliath

Deal W. Hudson
March 25, 2009

If you think the pro-life movement has run out of energy and new ideas, you should meet Lila Rose. You may not know her name, but you very likely have seen the media coverage of her various sting operations at Planned Parenthood clinics around the country.

Rose is 20 years old, but she is already entering her fourth year of covert operation, as it were, exposing the underhanded – and, in some cases, potentially illegal – practices at abortion clinics run by Planned Parenthood. She has already made appearances on The O’Reilly Factor and Hannity’s America.

Posing as an underage pregnant girl, Rose has taken concealed audio and video equipment into these clinics. First, she makes sure the clinic personnel knows she is underage and that the baby’s father is an older man, repeating his name clearly. By law, the clinic personnel must then notify the police that the alleged father has had sex with a minor.

But in every case, the counselors at Planned Parenthood have brushed aside the sexual abuse of a minor and failed to contact the police. The Arizona attorney general recently opened an investigation of a Tucson Planned Parenthood clinic based upon Rose’s footage.

Previously released footage has already put Planned Parenthood clinics on high alert – each clinic has a poster with Rose’s picture on the wall. I asked Rose how she felt about having her picture displayed like a wanted criminal: “Well, I had to go blonde over the summer so I wouldn’t be recognized. I think it’s sad. They are afraid of this little girl – at the time I was 18 – and more concerned with looking for me than looking for the sexual abusers.”

Rose comes from a large Evangelical family – five brothers and two sisters – in San Jose, California. Her father, John, is a software engineer; her mother, Antonia, a home-schooler. Rose is a junior at UCLA studying history, and she entered the Catholic Church on March 15 of this year.

It was as a freshman at UCLA that Rose first got the idea to record what goes on inside an abortion clinic. “When I came to UCLA there were no pregnant women on campus, so I knew they were being aborted,” she told me. With help from her friend James O’Keefe, she took a concealed voice recorder into the UCLA health clinic pretending to be a pregnant co-ed. When she asked whether they would help her keep the baby, she was told, “We do abortions, but we don’t support women who are pregnant at UCLA.”

When she published the transcript of the conversation in The Advocate – the campus paper she started as a freshman – the story provoked a campus-wide debate among students, staff, and administrators, resulting in the creation of a parenting support network.

Later in that same year, 2007, Rose took both video and audio recorders into two Planned Parenthood clinics in Los Angeles. “The first time I went alone and had an audio recorder stuffed in a pocket and an old camcorder camera stuffed in my purse,” I asked her if she had felt any fear. “No, I was not scared. I was eager to see what would happen. It’s always been my dream to be used in the fight against abortion. I had a strong feeling I could be helpful.”

She credits the work of Mark Crutcher at Life Dynamics for inspiring her to take this route in exposing practices inside Planned Parenthood clinics. Crutcher had once used an actor pretending to be a 13-year-old girl to call abortion clinics.

Perhaps even more troubling to Planned Parenthood are the phone calls Rose and O’Keefe placed to their development offices, posing as donors who were pushing a racist agenda. They told development personnel that they wanted to make a donation specifically targeting a black woman so that there would be fewer black children. Not a single Planned Parenthood staffer hung up on them, and some indicated they were in agreement.

Rose and O’Keefe made videos of these phone calls and posted them on YouTube. Some of Rose’s videos, such as this one from Bloomington, IN, have been viewed over 100,000 times.

Rose and her organization, Live Action, are presently in the midst of a multi-state investigation, from which much of the footage has not yet been released. “We have a lot of footage we are sitting on. Planned Parenthood is the world’s largest abortion provider and should be held accountable. But we want to show not only the victims of sexual abuse but also the victim who is the pre-born child.”

Rose’s story is pure David and Goliath. Here is a college junior who doesn’t own a car, working out of her apartment with the help of one paid staffer and friends who volunteer, taking on one of the most powerful, well-funded, and well-connected organizations in the country. Planned Parenthood has tried to silence her: After she posted the videos of her visit to the Los Angeles abortion clinics, Rose received a threatening cease-and-desist letter from Planned Parenthood’s attorney.

“When I got the letter, I was by myself in my college dorm room. I was full of adrenaline, and I was very excited. I didn’t know what to think or do, so I got on my knees and said, ‘Lord, whatever you want to happen, let it be according to your will.'”

By Deal Hudson

Deal W. Hudson was born November 20, 1949 in Denver, CO, to Emmie and Jack Hudson, both native Texans. Dr. Hudson had an older sister Ruth, and eventually, a younger sister, Elizabeth. Emmie Hudson, Ruth Hudson and Elizabeth Hudson now live in Houston, TX; Jack Hudson passed away some years ago. The late Jack Hudson was a captain for Braniff Airlines in Denver at the time of Dr. Hudson’s birth. Later the family moved to Kansas City when his father joined the Federal Aviation Agency. From Kansas City, the Hudson family moved to Minneapolis, then to Massapequa, NY, and finally to Alexandria, VA, where they first occupied a home overlooking the Potomac River adjacent to the Mount Vernon estate. After a year, the family moved to a home on Tarpon Lane a few houses up the street from the Yacht Haven boat docks. Dr. Hudson attended Mt. Vernon Elementary School from grades 4 to 6 and has a special gratitude for the teaching of Mr. Hoppe who first told him was a ‘smart lad.’ Having moved with his family to Fort Worth, TX in 1960, Dr. Hudson attended William Monnig Junior High and Arlington Heights HS. In high school, Dr. Hudson was captain of the golf team, editor of the literary magazine (Guerdon), and performed the role of Peter in the ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ during his senior year. Dr. Hudson graduated cum laude with a major in philosophy from the University of Texas-Austin in 1971 where his undergraduate advisor was Prof. John Silber. His teachers at the University of Texas included Prof. Louis Mackey and Prof. Larry Caroline. Dr. Hudson minored in both classics and English literature. Dr. Hudson lived in Atlanta from 1974-1989, where he attended Emory University, receiving a Phd from the Graduate Institute for the LIberal Arts. He also taught philosophy at Mercer University in Atlanta from 1980-89. In 1989 Dr. Hudson and his family left Atlanta when he was hired to teach philosophy at Fordham University in the Bronx. Dr. Hudson taught at Fordham, and also part-time at New York University, from 1989 to 1994. Dr. Hudson first came to Atlanta in after graduation from Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) with an M.Div. While at PTS, Dr. Hudson managed the Baptist Student Union at Princeton University and became its first director. Dr. Hudson also was licensed at a minister in the Southern Baptist Convention at Madison Baptist Church in Madison, NJ. Dr. Hudson’s primary area of study at PTS was the history of Christian doctrine which he pursued with Dr. Karlfried Froelich. In 1984 Dr. Hudson was received in the Catholic Church by Msgr. Richard Lopez, with the special permission of Archbishop Thomas A. Donnellan, at the chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cancer Home in Atlanta. Dr. Hudson has been married twenty-five years to Theresa Carver Hudson and they have two children, Hannah Clare, 23, and Cyprian Joseph (Chip), 15, adopted from Romania when he was three years old. The Hudson family has lived in Fairfax, VA for more than fifteen years, after having lived five years in Bronxville, NY and a year in Atlanta, GA, where Theresa and Deal were married.

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