WHO IS OPERATION SAVE AMERICA, AND WHY SHOULD I CARE?
Meet Operation Save America (OSA): one of the most influential and terrifying anti-abortion groups you’ve never heard of.
Operation Save America claims it’s a “religious” organization, but really it’s just a hate group, with active chapters all over the country. It’s like Chick-fil-A, minus the fried poultry!
But OSA isn’t just a troupe of anti-abortion zealots. It has a three-pronged approach to what it sees as exorcising the sin out of America:
- Outlaw abortion
- Criminalize homosexuality
- Eradicate Islam
OSA’s whole mission is that we need to be a country that follows Christian principles or our nation and its people will perish in the fires of hell.
But to be clear, the main focus of this insurrection of intolerance is to eliminate abortion care in the US, one state abortion ban at a time.
WHAT EXACTLY DO THESE GENTLE SOULS PROMOTE?
Here are some greatest hits of their basic worldview:
MEN ARE ANOINTED BY GOD TO RULE, OH, EVERYTHING!
- Also, women with power, even in their own homes, are “one of the most destructive forces in our society today.”
ABORTION IS MURDER!
- People who have abortions and people who perform abortions are murderers and should be prosecuted under the law as such. Basically, some OSA activists are people who watched “The Handmaid’s Tale” and were like “Where’s all this oppression people are talking about?”
MUSLIMS ARE SATAN'S HENCHMEN!
- Mosques should be ERADICATED, because of how Islam is a “false religion, birthed from the very pit of hell.” Yep. Actual quote.
NO RULES! #JESUS
- OSA lobbies politicians to follow its guiding text, The Doctrine of the Lesser Magistrates. Boiled down, it means powerful men should disregard any US law or SCOTUS ruling that goes against their interpretation of biblical teachings.
THE GAYS ARE GONNA GET YOU!
- They hate gays very much, and think the government should take care of that “problem.” They have said homosexuality “needs to be suppressed through the force of law.”
- Did you know their kids “can’t use the bathrooms at public parks or theme parks anymore,” because of all the “vile things homosexuals are doing in them”? They must mean #1 and #2. That’s awful.
WHERE ON EARTH DID THIS ORGANIZATION COME FROM?
Operation Save America is not new.
It mutated and morphed out of a fringe, extremist, anti-abortion, homophobic, Islamophobic group called Operation Rescue (OR) and changed its name in the late 1990s. To this day, they refer to themselves as OR/OSA.
The OG organization Operation Rescue was founded in the 1980s by an anti-abortion absolutist named Randall Terry. The aggressive tactics of Operation Rescue sprang from his philosophy, “If you think abortion is murder, act like it’s murder.” Terry’s belief that man’s laws cannot trump God’s law led him to actions like chaining himself to clinics, dropping threatening leaflets about abortion providers in their neigborhoods, and bringing actual fetal remains to clinics to show to patients going in for procedures. His trespassing on clinic property eventually landed him in jail. Terry finally left the organization but his philosophies have remained the cornerstone of the organization's tactics. In fact, every leader of the organization has been arrested or jailed for their illegal anti-abortion activities.
The 1990s saw anti-abortion gadfly Flip Benham take the helm of Operation Rescue. It was Benham who changed the name to Operation Save America and aggressively expanded the “Save the fetus, punish the pregnant person” mania into a nationwide movement, and the 1990s and 2000s saw state chapters of OSA begin to crop up everywhere.
Benham is a skilled multitasker when it comes to promoting oppression. When Flip is not terrorizing patients at clinics around the country, he spends his time burning Qur’ans, taunting Muslims in front of their mosques, and harassing trans folks trying to pee in public restrooms. Benham’s crowning “achievement” however came in 1995, when he converted and baptized Norma McCorvey, AKA “Jane Roe” from the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade, and brought her into to a new life as an OR/OSA anti-abortion spokesperson.
Just a classic Pay-to-Pray situation!
FUN FACT: Flip is also the dad of the notorious Benham Brothers, the Aryan Bible twins who lost their HGTV show because someone discovered their silo of vile, anti-gay statements. In 2014, Flip passed the burning torch of OR/OSA to mentee Rusty Thomas, who is the current national director of OSA.
OSA still uses Operation Rescue’s original playbook today: OSA continues the tactics of bringing thousands of hobby-less members to one non-consenting town after another, descending on abortion clinics with violent imagery, aggressive protests, and clinic blockades, all in the name of its vengeful and seemingly sadistic God.
HOW OSA IS INFLUENCING LEGISLATION AND POLICY
This may be the scariest thing about them. They train their supporters to lobby state legislators and bring their crew of White Walkers to promote that creepy Doctrine of Lesser Magistrates when state legislatures are in session.
They have the ear of elected officials and are successfully getting men from their ranks elected to public office. In addition to OSA’s own lobbying work, they work with Abolish Human Abortion’s lobbying arm, Free the States, which claims its mission is “To free the states from participating in the American abortion holocaust.” Casual appropriation of the Holocaust is not a bug of OSA, it’s a feature.
They focus on passing laws that ban abortion completely and exact harsh punishment for both providers and patients. There is no middle ground, no exception for rape, incest or health of the pregnant person for these guys.