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Building Bridges: Both Sides of the Abortion Debate

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With support from: Lowell Institute
Date and time
Thursday, October 24, 2002
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Laura Chasin, director of the Public Conversations Project, moderates a panel discussion motivated by the 1994 shootings at two Brookline clinics. After these tragic events, six leaders on both sides of the abortion debate began meeting, not for the purpose of reaching compromise, but to build relationships of mutual respect and understanding that might de-escalate the rhetoric of the abortion controversy and reduce the risk of future attacks on clinics. "In this world of polarizing conflicts", they explain, "we have glimpsed a new possibility: a way in which people can disagree frankly and passionately, become clearer in heart and mind about their activities, and, at the same time, contribute to a more civil and compassionate society."

The Reverend Anne Fowler is rector of St. John's Episcopal Church in Jamaica Plain, and a past member of the board of directors of Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice.
Frances X. Hogan, a partner at the law firm of Lyne, Woodworth & Evarts, is president of Women Affirming Life and consultant to the Pro-Life Committee of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops. Ms Hogan graduated from Regis College and with honors from Boston College Law School where she served as a member of the Board of Editors of the Boston College Law Review and was admitted to membership in the Order of the Coif. Admitted to the Massachusetts and the federal bars, Ms. Hogan is a member of the Massachusetts Conveyancers Association. [Source: http://www.mediate.com/people/personprofile.cfm?auid=554]
Melissa Kogut is executive director of Mass NARAL, state affiliate of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League.
Barbara Thorp has been director of the Pro-Life Office of the Archdiocese of Boston since 1985 and is on the executive boards of the National Office of Post-Abortion Reconciliation and Healing, the National Committee for a Human Life Amendment, and Women Affirming Life.

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