90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Defending Dr. Tiller
A memorial of flowers outside the Women's Health Care Clinic in Wichita, Kan., on June 1, 2009. The clinic was owned by Dr. George Tiller, who was gunned down during church services the day before. (AP)

A memorial of flowers outside the Women's Health Care Clinic in Wichita, Kan., on June 1, 2009. The clinic was owned by Dr. George Tiller, who was gunned down during church services the day before. (AP)

Ten days ago, abortion provider Dr. George Tiller was shot dead in the foyer of his Wichita, Kansas church.

Yesterday, Tiller’s clinic in Wichita was closed, after years of threats and attacks — and now murder.

Abortion opposition has spoken with gunfire. Today, we’ll hear from a prominent defender. Episcopal priest Katherine Ragsdale has called abortion a “blessing.” She says there’s been too much compromise with opponents, too little straight-up defense.

This hour, On Point: In the face of gunfire, a full-throated defense of a woman’s right to choose abortion.

You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Guests:

The Reverend Katherine Ragsdale joins us in our studio. She is the incoming dean and president of Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and outgoing executive director of Political Research Associates, which tracks right-wing political movements. She’s a board member of NARAL Pro-Choice America and a former chair of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. She has been Vicar of St. David’s Episcopal Church in Pepperell, Mass., since 1996.

You can read her remarks on abortion as a “blessing,” in a speech in Birmingham, Alabama, in July 2007.

Joining us from Washington is Jim Wallis, founder and editor of Sojourners, a progressive evangelical Christian magazine and faith community. An influential voice on religion and politics in America, he’s the author of several books, including “The Great Awakening: Seven Ways to Change the World” and “God’s Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn’t Get It.” (Listen to his previous interview with On Point in January 2005.)

More links:

The Boston Globe profiled Rev. Ragsdale, with a look at her involvement in national political issues, this past March.  Last week The Boston Phoenix ran this longer consideration of her thinking on abortion.

In a lenthy interview with Christianity Today last year, Jim Wallis explained his thinking on abortion, gay marriage, and other issues.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Feb 27, 2015
Federal Communication Commission (FCC) ChairmanTom Wheeler, center, joins hands with FCC Commissioners Mignon Clyburn, left, and Jessica Rosenworcel, before the start of their open hearing in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015.  (AP)

A US-Israel rift. A win for net neutrality. “American Sniper” verdict. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Feb 27, 2015
This image released courtesy of the Lead Belly Estate shows folk and blues musician Huddie William Ledbetter, better known as Lead Belly. Huddie "Lead Belly" Ledbetter never had a hit record before he died of Lou Gehrig's disease in 1949. (AP)

Going back to Lead Belly. The blues legend is back. His influences, as big as ever.

RECENT
SHOWS
Feb 27, 2015
This image released courtesy of the Lead Belly Estate shows folk and blues musician Huddie William Ledbetter, better known as Lead Belly. Huddie "Lead Belly" Ledbetter never had a hit record before he died of Lou Gehrig's disease in 1949. (AP)

Going back to Lead Belly. The blues legend is back. His influences, as big as ever.

 
Feb 27, 2015
Federal Communication Commission (FCC) ChairmanTom Wheeler, center, joins hands with FCC Commissioners Mignon Clyburn, left, and Jessica Rosenworcel, before the start of their open hearing in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015.  (AP)

A US-Israel rift. A win for net neutrality. “American Sniper” verdict. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: February 27, 2015
Friday, Feb 27, 2015

We won’t lead you into a debate on the color of #TheDress (it’s blue and black, end of debate), but we do wonder about the blurring lines between so-called Internet culture and general popular culture. Also, it’s snowing in Boston. Still.

More »
Comment
 
Two Congressmen Weigh In On DHS Funding
Tuesday, Feb 24, 2015

Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Rep. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland present their views on the ongoing Congressional budget fight over Department of Homeland Security funding. (Spoiler: They do not agree on a resolution of the crisis).

More »
1 Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: February
Friday, Feb 20, 2015

We explain what happened with the old podcast feed this week and last, share some other Oscar categories and reminisce about the golden days of Double Rainbows and Honey Badgers who just don’t care.

More »
Comment