Norma McCorvey's Strange Bedfellows
By Mike Doughney and Lauren Sabina Kneisly

The “Jane Roe” of Roe v. Wade is now a fixture on the “pro-life” talk circuit. She’s also been quite friendly with the racist editor of a newspaper closely associated with the Christian Identity movement, whose ideas and associations are abhorrent to most people.

Photo of McCorvey with Hall
Norma McCorvey with Jubilee editor Paul Hall. From The Jubilee Newspaper, May/June 1998. Enlarge

Since her conversion to the "pro-life" cause in August of 1995, Norma McCorvey, the “Jane Roe” of the 1972 “Roe v. Wade” Supreme Court case, has been making a career out of her role as a ‘poster child’ of sorts for the compulsory-pregnancy movement. She’s revised her life story, contradicting what she wrote in support of abortion in her 1994 book, I Am Roe, in a new work that can be found in most Christian bookstores, Won By Love. She’s also appeared at numerous events, including the 1997 American Life League conference, and most recently, the 1999 Maryland Right to Life Convention.

But there is another aspect to McCorvey’s work that has gone largely unnoticed.

In May of 1998, The Jubilee Newspaper reported that McCorvey was a featured speaker at “Jubilation ’98,” a convention hosted by the newspaper and its editor, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Jubilee is a newspaper that is widely recognized as one of the leading publications of the Christian Identity movement. Christian Identity ideology holds that only white "Aryans" are the true "Israel," that is, only they are eligible for salvation in the Christian sense of the word, and that Jews are of Satan. This belief can be found directly on the Jubilee web site as part of the explanation of the newspaper’s viewpoint, as follows:

We understand and teach that the descendants of the Israelites of scripture are the Anglo-Saxon, Scandinavian, Celtic, Germanic and European people with whom God has made His covenant. They are the descendants of Abraham. Those who refer to themselves as Jews and are NOT but are of the synagogue of Satan (the adversary)...

The Jubilee Newspaper of May/June, 1998, published a photo of the Jubilee editor, Paul Hall, sitting with his arm around McCorvey at the 1998 conference; there is no question that Hall is responsible for the quote above.

Paul Hall has also editorialized in his newspaper against interracial marriage, in an editorial entitled “Inter-racial Genocide,” which appeared in the July/August 1997 issue:

The epidemic of inter-racial children, is the systematic and planned extermination of an entire racial group…

Hall also has no qualms about describing his role as a soldier in “God’s war.”We can certainly assume that his war is against those who he feels are practicing genocide against his race. His opening comments before the Jubilation '98 conference make it quite clear that it is not some allegorical spiritual war that he is describing, but a war with real physical casualties:

How many of you have read the end of the story and know ITS NOT OVER UNTIL WE WIN!!

How many of you know that this WAR we fight is not about saving our personal bank accounts or reducing our taxes? It’s not about keeping our guns or our right to travel.

In fact, how many know this war — in which we serve as soldiers — is not our war at all?!

This war is God’s war and I don’t know what god others may serve but our God is the absolute, guaranteed, no questions asked VICTOR!

And I’m here to tell you friends IT AIN’T OVER UNTIL HE WINS!

You and I are mere soldiers in this army and as such we have some grueling tasks ahead of us.

True, some of us have — and will — suffer personal losses. There have already been many casualties, martyrs if you will, who have lost their lives…

From our ancient forefathers in Israel, to our European ancestors, to our more recent forebearers in Colonial America to the present Gordon Kahl, Vicki and Sam Weaver to the victims at Waco.

And there will be many more lives lost before this deal is over.

When browsing through almost any issue of The Jubilee Newspaper — our copies were purchased at a west coast John Birch Society bookstore — it’s clear that you’re looking at a publication that reflects the far fringes of American politics and religion, with a heavy dose of conspiracy theory, scapegoating and medical quackery. A few examples — from just the one issue in which McCorvey’s picture appears:

  • Vaccines are means of bioterrorism, controlled by pharmaceutical companies and government labs that also created the AIDS and Ebola viruses.
  • U.S. Marshals regularly beat and torture incarcerated members of anti-government groups such as the Montana Freemen.
  • The U.N. is conspiring to assert global control, using Communist principles to forment revolution around the world.

As might be expected from a group that asserts that people of the Jewish faith are falsely claiming to be “God’s covenant people” descended from Abraham, there is obvious evidence of extreme anti-Jewish sentiment in the pages of the newspaper. One article in the September/October 1998 issue, by Ret. Lt. Col. Jack Mohr, ties together “hard nosed Communist Jews” as part of a “New World Order” that hates America and “White Christianity:”

When the USSR broke up, the media said “Communism is dead!”  …But Communism never died!  It merely changed it’s name, and today it can be found in the guise of the Zionist New World Order. All the leaders of the ‘break away’ nations are ‘hard nosed Communist Jews’ who hate America and White Christianity in particular.

More disturbing are the kinds of things that can be found in the back pages of the newspaper, and in the “Book Shelf” section of their website. Among the titles for sale is “The Holocaust Dogma of Judaism,” a Holocaust-denial tract favorably reviewed on the website of Ernst Zündel, the proponent of Holocaust revisionism whose website calls the Holocaust "the lie of the century." Five books by Richard Kelly Hoskins are also featured; one of them, “War Cycles Peace Cycles,” was found in the possession of Buford O’Neal Furrow, who allegedly wounded five inside a Jewish community center before killing an Asian postal carrier in Los Angeles last August.

You can also find most of these books prominently advertised on the website of the Aryan Nations, the group based at an Idaho compound where Furrow allegedly taught hand-to-hand combat in 1996.

The Aryan Nations can also be connected to The Jubilee Newspaper through its longtime correspondent and speaker at its 1996 gathering, former Texas Klansman Louis Beam. Beam’s history, dating back to the late 1970’s, clearly indicates that that The Jubilee Newspaper is a nexus not only for those with unpopular views, racist and anti-Jewish ideologies, and Christian extremism; it also attracts people who’ve openly endorsed violence to advance their racist and anti-government agenda.

Louis Beam was the Grand Dragon of the Texas Ku Klux Klan through June of 19811. During that time he reportedly operated a training camp for the Texas Emergency Reserve, the paramilitary arm of the Texas Klan2. According to the Houston Chronicle, the camp was also where Klan instructors taught “Boy Scouts and Civil Air Patrol cadets how to strangle people and fire guns.”

After quitting the Klan, Louis Beam began calling himself “ambassador-at-large” for the Aryan Nations sometime around 1985.3 Beam was later indicted for attempting to overthrow the government4 and arrested in a shootout in Mexico in November 1987.5 He was later acquitted.6 But during the course of the trial, the testimony of two student journalists who interviewed Beam at the Aryan Nations compound in 1983, as reported by UPI, clearly indicates that the killing of Jews, blacks, civil rights leaders and federal agents were part of Beam’s plans for the future:

Michael Martin, a student-journalist who with fellow student Anne Russell conducted interviews at the Hayden Lake compound in 1983, testified Friday that Louis Beam Jr., former grand dragon of the Texas Ku Klux Klan, told him the government would be overthrown and a new constitution in place by 1989.

Russell testified that Beam referred to the U.S. government as an ''illegal, criminal regime.''

Martin and Russell also testified Friday that Beam told of a point system to reward members who killed the movement's enemies.

The most points went for killing rich Jews, said Martin and Russell, students at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash., at the time.

The execution of civil rights leaders and federal agents earned mid-range points, and the lowest number of points was for killing a ''common street nigger,'' Martin quoted Beam as saying.7

Beam appeared at the previous Jubilee Newspaper event, held in Lake Tahoe in April of 1996. Videotapes of Beam’s presentations, and also those of Christian Identity leader Pete Peters, are still prominently featured on the newspaper’s website.

Throughout the Jubilee newspaper and website are prominent denials of racism, hatred and anti-government views, and even denials of an association of the paper with the Christian Identity movement. These denials mean little in the light of the words the paper actually prints — can anyone deny that equating intermarriage with genocide is racist? — and the history of the people that Paul Hall has hired to write for his paper, most prominently that of Louis Beam.

There is much more that could be written about the connections between Paul Hall and The Jubilee Newspaper and the Christian Patriot, militia and Identity movements, and others who clearly use this newspaper and its gatherings to promote views and methods that would not sit well with most Americans or most Christians for that matter. Clearly Norma McCorvey has connected with members of an extremist movement, some of whom have condoned violence, and has allowed herself to be photographed and videotaped in the company of these extremists.

But it is not enough to simply expose Norma McCorvey’s past associations. What must be exposed is the interconnecting web between organizations like Maryland Right to Life — that finds it necessary to place a statement on its web page disavowing any unlawful activities on the part of anyone acting on its behalf — and extremists such as Paul Hall and others associated with him. An individual who had Hall’s arm around her not more than a year and a half ago is now the featured luncheon speaker at the Maryland Right to Life convention. Here is a direct and documented connection between a seemingly respectable, legislatively powerful organization and extremists on the lunatic fringe, who are beneath contempt for their racist, anti-Jewish views and connections to those who advocate violent action.

McCorvey is unquestioned and unquestionable, welcomed with open arms by groups such as Maryland Right to Life, speaking to conferences in nice suburban neighborhoods, accepted into polite company, telling a story that plays well in churches. Skepticism, even some basic checking into the backgrounds of their featured speakers, is not acceptable; thus, someone like McCorvey can speak to extremists and so-called moderates, Jubilee and Right to Life, traveling from one to the other without penalty, or fear of ostracism for having associated with extremists.

It’s time to begin challenging the assumption, the idea that “they wouldn’t have someone like THAT speaking at this conference.” Because they have, and they will continue to, until and unless people, both inside and outside the “pro-life” movement, demand to know who it is that they’re inviting into their churches, their Knights of Columbus halls, putting them up on pedestals as examples to be imitated.

Footnotes

  1. “Lawyer says Texas Klan grand dragon quitting.” UPI, July 23, 1981
  2. “Boys Reported Learning to Shoot and Kill at a Klan Camp in Texas.” New York Times / UPI, November 24, 1980
  3. “Cable Television Gives Klan New Pulpit.” Associated Press, March 2, 1985
  4. “15 White Supremacists Indicted in 2 States; Some Charged in Berg Killing; Conspiracy to Overthrow U.S. Cited.” Los Angeles Times, April 25, 1987
  5. “Supremacist arrested in Mexico.” UPI, November 9, 1987
  6. UPI, April 7, 1988
  7. “Testimony continues on 1983 supremacist summit meeting.” UPI, February 22, 1988

For further reading

Last updated November 13, 1999

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