Updated 09.19.14@ 11:26pm. Here is a video from Christopher Rush posted minutes ago explaining more of his story and answering questions
And so claims Abby Johnson. Unfortunately for her, and fortunately for the truth, I have seen the purported full video below [Updated 09.18.14@ 3:00pm, There have been allegations, most notably by some BAMH peeps, that the clip may or may not have been edited at least 4 times. Will write more as information comes in] [Update 2. Here is a statement from Christopher himself regarding the edits]
“She lunges up and tries to grab the camera..I mean it’s clear as day. And as she does that I’m like “what are you doing?” you hear me saying “What are you doing, this is mine.” And then the reason why people are saying that the video is edited is because there’s about 5 videos …because people were grabbing for the camera the GoPro got turned off and on, off and on a couple ties. It’s not easy to keep a GoPro on when you’re trying to keep four people from taking it from you. And so that’s why there’s a cut between all of that, but it’s not edited in the sense that I manipulated anything, If I would have tried to edit something you guys, I would have edited me cursing, ok?”
You should watch the whole video, but if this is a TLDR moment, you can start at about 5:30 and let it play until the 8 minute mark or so.
To focus on a few things, the first is her claim that “she was assaulted by an AHA member while her newborn was just inches away”. At first I assumed that she must have been holding the baby while this was happening, as how else would a child get so close? Then I watched the video and didn’t see any baby nearby. I took frames from all around her, and then I realized that there is a guy in the back holding something.
Here are some screen shots I grabbed during this time frame when this happened, as well as in the seconds afterwards, when she grabbed his arm and was holding his arm.
The only person anywhere around her holding something looks to be the man in the blue, which looks to be some 10 feet away when all this was happening. I can’t tell if it’s a baby or not, but we’ll assume it is. That baby is not “inches away”, but rather looks to be 8-10 FEET AWAY, AT LEAST! I want to give her the benefit of a doubt and assume that perhaps she was just mistaken and got caught up in the moment and so on and had no spatial awareness of where her baby was.
In my opinion the video makes it clear that Abby herself instigated the grabbing, that she was the one being the aggressor, and that she was the one who laid hands on him and tried to take or turn off his personal property. First I would ask what mother would purposefully instigate an act of aggression when her child is “inches” away from her if she was so concerned about his/her safety?
But more importantly, it also seems to me that her story is pretty much pure fabrication. And so when we read the rest of her post, and her version of the events, the fact that it is so patently skewed and dishonest would leave me to believe that she may have claimed it was “inches” to drum up drama and sympathy, knowing full well this wasn’t the case. I hope that’s not the case, but when framed against the rest of her retelling, that’s what it seems like.
As one example, she claims Christopher GRABBED HER AND THREW HER AROUND BY HER ARM AS SHE TRIED TO ESCAPE. Do we see that happening? I know the video is shaky, but when you picture someone being thrown, what do you envision? Do you envision what transpired? We don’t see Abby screaming that she has been grabbed and being flung around violently, but rather the whole time Chris is yelling for HER to get her hands off HIM
Here are a few more gems from the same conversation
As far as that message goes, there is no threat of punching her in the face. Here is the transcript of all his conversation, starting at 7:02 after he had been physically grabbed by several people. Christopher later goes on to explain that he was speaking of all who grabbed him.
“This is my property and you guys are trying to grab it? Abby because you’re mad? Because you got filmed telling/saying that I don’t have the bread and body of Christ? You have a bigger revelation than me? Wait wait. I was talking in a nice tone before she [Abby] grabbed my arm like a crazy person…blah blah blah blah blah.. Because I’m the one being level-headed and ya’ll coming and attack me. This is crazy. You guys are attacking me and I’m the bad person….I will… I didn’t need to be grabbed though. No one asked me to leave yet. She [Abby] grabbed me before anybody asked me to leave…She [Abby] got mad because she got caught saying that crazy crap…I will leave but don’t touch me…you guys are a joke. You touched me? You’re lucky I didn’t start swinging. Like seriously…how dare you lay your hands on me? No- on him, and him, and toss her off me. You’re off your damn rocker.”
When someone is surrounded and grabbed by a handful of people, one’s first instinct is not to go limp and play dead. From all accounts he resisted being grabbed and she was pushed against a table. To say that “he threw a young woman on a table” is dishonest and does not represent the situation, and makes it sound way worse that it probably was.. And even if he had, [whatever that would look like] I don’t fault him or blame him for that, particularly in the heat of the moment when he is being swarmed.
This last post is also awful. 1. Many abolitionists don’t believe that Roman Catholics are Christians, but that doesn’t make them “anti-Catholic”. It means they think many Catholics need repentance and salvation. 2. No abolitionist would say that that they are anti-former clinic worker. Of course it’s a good thing when someone stops killing babies and stops helping people kill babies. What’s the alternative, that they wish there were no former clinic workers? That they don’t rejoice when someone leaves the abortuary? That they wish everyone who participates in the killing continues in the killing? Also slanderous. And last, to say that AHA is anti-post abortive women is a lie and terrible characterization. Why is Abby Johnson using such a self-serving definition of “anti? In any case, what she said, and the way her followers are reacting is really disappointing, and it’s also very shameful.
Here is a debrief uploaded by Christopher after the fact explaining his side of the story, in response to Abby:
Now that the video has been released, will she retract her statement and admit that she was wrong about the details, as well as what actually happened? Or will this be another case where she makes more false claims about someone, as seen below when Toby Harmon and Jeremy Brown were attacked. At that time Abby said this about it:
When in reality this is what happened
After the video came out, Abby Johnson did not apologize or issue a retraction against the people she sinned against and slandered. Her friends and followers shared the status and she let them do it without a word of correction. She let the misrepresentation and the butchering of a reputation stand..
I hope that this does not happen in this situation, and that she reaches out to Christopher Rush and asks his forgiveness for the lies and slander, as well as to Toby and Jeremy for sins done previously.
And lastly, it should also be known that I don’t think that Christopher Rush behaved as he should have in this whole mess. Obviously if you go to do the work of agitation and film it, you need to deal with the repercussions of push-back in love and grace, even if that push-back comes in an excessively hostile form. I get and understand that this was heat-of-the-moment stuff, but after the initial burst of excitement he should have calmed down, especially after law-enforcement got involved. It was really time to be peaceful and chill, even as he was extremely upset and troubled by the incident. Easier said than done though.