On Friday Jan 23, 2004, I spoke at the 31st anniversary celebration of Roe v. Wade given by the Planned Parenthood of Central and Northern Arizona. The lunch at the Hilton at Squaw Peak had 600 in attendance and people were being turned away. Governor Napolitano appeared and gave the best speech I have ever heard by a politician–it lasted less than 30 seconds! I’ll vote for her anytime!
The Governor stayed for my speech which I take as an honor…it couldn’t have been the chicken pot pie, but the chocolate cheesecake was quite tasty.
I recounted for the audience the number of anti-choice bills that have been passed by state legislatures around the country, over 300 in the last five years and asked them how many more laws will it take before we begin to rethink how we talk about the issue of choice to the American public. Our political problem is an idea problem. We are not talking in language that the 60% of the American public who are in the “middle” on the abortion issue can relate to. This “muddled middle”, I don’t think is muddled; I just think we haven’t reached them on terms they can relate to.
Hence my book, Beyond Choice.
The audience was, in my not so humble opinion, taking in every word. Tons of books were sold afterwards
The organizers of the event, Oonagh Boppart and Elaine Warner, did a fantastic job, as did the staff of PPCNA. Thanks to all.
Later that day, I spoke at my first bookstore event at Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe. A very serious crowd of mixed political opinions showed up and, after I presented the book in about 15 minutes, asked very penetrating questions about the book and my opinion on a variety of matters. One man when he was leaving said, “That was more interesting than I thought it would be”. The best backhanded compliment I have ever received.