Seattle woman behind #ShoutYourAbortion forced to go into hiding following death threats
SEATTLE — The 30-year-old Seattle woman whose emotional Facebook post launched the #ShoutYourAbortion movement has left the city and is in hiding following a number of death threats, the LA Times reports.
On Sept. 18, Amelia Bonow updated her personal Facebook page with a story about an abortion she had at Planned Parenthood. Bonow spoke highly of the experience and the “exceptional level of care” she received at the often-maligned health clinic. She also wrote that having her abortion made her “happy” in a way that shouldn’t be shamed.
“Plenty of people still believe that on some level — if you are a good woman — abortion is a choice which should accompanied by some level of sadness, shame, or regret,” Bonow wrote. “But you know what? I have a good heart and having an abortion made me happy in a totally unqualified way. Why wouldn’t I be happy that I was not forced to become a mother?”
Bonow ended her post with the hashtag #ShoutYourAbortion. Her post was shared on Twitter by fellow Seattleite and popular columnist Lindy West, and it quickly garnered a lot of attention. The hashtag was soon trending across the country.
Though the movement quickly garnered praise for its attempts to de-stigmatize woman’s health issues, it also garnered harsh critics. The #ShoutYourMurder — an anti-abortion tag — sprang up in response.
Some, according to the LA Times, even threatened Bonow.
“If happiness is the standard,” Twitter user Netizen Kane wrote, “Then it might make many people happy if @ameliabonow had her head crushed, too.”
Fearing for her life, Bonow and her boyfriend left their apartment and stayed in a Seattle hotel late last week. She then received a call from the vice president of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest expressing grave concern for her safety, the Times reported.
Bonow quickly took residence in a different city. She also spoke to Planned Parenthood's head of security, and was put in contact with the Seattle Police Department and the FBI.
Bonow has not yet returned to Seattle, the Times reports, but says she does not regret her decision of her post and the #ShoutYourAbortion hashtag.
"We're not going to be drowned out by the people who make me not want to be at my apartment now," Bonow told the Times. "Many women want to live in a world where you can say, 'I've had an abortion, and I'm perfectly fine with that,' and not have people saying they want to kill you."