News Abortion

Pushback In Jackson Hole Forces “Missionaries” To Cancel Day Two of Protests

Robin Marty

Looks like the Wisconsin anti-choice protest group doesn't deal well with opposition.

“Missionaries to the Pre-Born,” the rabid anti-choice group that grabbed headlines in North Dakota last week with their graphic posters of dead fetuses and sidewalk “preaching” in front of the state’s only abortion clinic, no doubt thought they would replicate their success when they went to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, to set the stage for the rest of the “States of Refuge” tour.

Instead, they’re leaving town early.


The first of two anti-abortion demonstrations planned in Jackson has been cut short.

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Members of the Milwaukee-based Missionaries To the Pre-Born lined Broadway on Monday and had planned to return on Tuesday. However, spokesman Jim Soderna told the Jackson Hole Daily ( ) that they’ve canceled Tuesday’s action because of a scheduling issue.

So did a scheduling conflict really pop up? Or was it the unexpected push back from a quickly formed citizen’s group called Jackson Hole United, which showed up on street corners as “human detours” with signs pointing alternative routes for motorists and pedestrians to take to avoid the street corner protests?

Either way, Jackson Hole now has 10 days to rest before the next wave of the tour descends. 

News Abortion

Jackson Hole United Organizes Against Operation Save America, And Wins

Robin Marty

"Human Detour" efforts from the group Jackson Hole United have kept the chaos -- and the interactions with protesters -- to a minimum in an effort to promote "civility, compassion, and love."

When Operation Save America came to Jackson Hole, Wyoming in 2011, they were greeted with outrage, anger, and threats of arrest. The anti-choice group’s decision to haunt the town square during Elk Fest, a local Boy Scout festival and the biggest event of the year for the city, turned into a whirl-wind of publicity for the organization, which was first forced off the square because of their graphic posters and photos, then later won a lawsuit claiming their first amendment rights were denied.

Returning to Jackson Hole, a liberal, wealthy area of the state that houses the only open abortion provider in Wyoming, Operation Save America’s “States of Refuge” tour believe they could once more draw the attention and media that they received in 2012.  But they were wrong.

Jackson Hole United, a group of both pro-choice and anti-choice residents determined to ensure that this year’s interaction between Operation Save America and the citizens of Jackson Hole remained peaceful and calm, organized to act as Human Detours, setting themselves up around town with signs informing motorists and pedestrians when they were about to come upon the group and their gory photos and offer alternative routes to avoid them.

 Jackson Hole United protester from last year. <a href=

The plan was a success. On Wednesday, only three citations were given out — one for reckless driving and two others for destruction of property. By Thursday, Jackson Hole United received permission from the city council to put their own banners and lawn signs up around town urging “civility, compassion, and love.”

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And in the biggest success, Operation Save America announced it would pull their banners and posters from the square on the day of Elk Fest, allowing the fundraising event to go on without incident, although they did pass materials out to those who attended. They replaced their banners the following day to finish off their protest.

Still, the town didn’t remain completely unscathed by the days of protest. Businesses around town square, where banners were displayed and often protesters spoke via megaphone announced a slump in sales that owners attributed to the anti-choice activists. 

But the weekend was a definite success, especially for Jackson Hole United’s mission to keep the town true to its own sense of community, and encouraging civility, compassion, and love.  As Jackson Hole United founder Mary Cobb Erickson told the group in their facebook page,  “It really isn’t about changing their [Operation Save America’s] hearts, this has been about changing ours.”

News Abortion

The Next Phase Of States Of Refuge: God Punishing Wyoming With “Evils” Because of Abortion

Robin Marty

Look out, Wyoming, it's your turn to host the States of Refuge team! 

The next phase of the “States of Refuge” tour to create an “abortion-free” state via intimidation, Bible-verse shouting and graphic blown-up pictures of dead fetuses is heading into Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and residents there will be introduced to a new group of anti-choice zealots.

Well, new to the tour. Not new to the city of Jackson Hole.

The “Missionaries to the Preborn” has a brief, two-day showing in the city this week, but they aren’t expected to bring half the buzz that Operation Save America devotees Reverend Rusty Lee Thomas and Pastor Mark Holick expect to create by lining the streets with their bloody posters.

Thomas, second in command under Operation Save America/Operation Rescue leader Flip Benham, has a big reason for opposing abortions — the “child sacrifice” legalized by Roe V. Wade has allowed “feministic women” to demand to be empowered, which has led to the decline of America.

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The purpose of Thomas’s ministry?

To bring glory, honor, and majesty to the true and living God; God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. To acknowledge Him as the Creator, Sustainer, Giver, and Governor of all life. To uphold His revelation, truth, and laws that promote the sacredness of life and the protection they afford as opposed to the lie of the “quality of life” that has been utilized to exterminate millions of tiny American citizens in the womb of their mothers.

And there’s no better way to bring “glory” to God than by protesting at the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, saying more violence will continue until abortion is ended in the country.

Since 1973 America has murdered FIFTY MILLION precious little children by abortion. The Bible warns that bloodshed follows bloodshed. We have sown domestic terrorism in the womb and we are reaping Islamic terrorism without.America is being turned over to her enemies. Our only hope is to REPENT of murdering our children and return to God through the merits of Jesus Christ the Savior of the world. If we repent and end abortion, God will deliver us from the evil of Islamic terrorism. But if we refuse, our enemies will continue to afflict our nation. We will continue to reap what we have sown.

But Thomas isn’t just focused on scaring women away from abortion clinics and prophesying doom and destruction in America due to Roe V. Wade. His major passion is molding the next generation of evangelical warriors via the Kingdom Leadership Institute, a “weeklong ideological boot camp for home-schooled Christians between the ages of 14 and 21.”

Pastor Mark Holick has a passion, too, and he’s taking the bullying and intimidating “sidewalk counselor” act beyond the reproductive clinics, adopting the same tactics to feed his fascination with “converting” Muslims. In 2010, Holick was arrested for bringing a group of followers to the Wichita Islamic Society during Ramadan to pass out “packets that included the Gospel of John and the Book of Romans in English and Arabic, a DVD with testimonies of former Islamists who have come to the Lord.”

Holick allegedly used his Operation Rescue learning skills to block people from entering the center, causing him to be fined and put on probation, but Holick was unrepentant. “Wichita is confused,” Holick said. “I am not your enemy. Islam is. The Lord said there will be no other gods before me.”

Holick also put a sign up in the church marquee stating, “America we have a Muslim president. This is a sin against the Lord.”

The two anti-choice extremists may be new to us, but they are old “friends” to the residents of Jackson Hole, who became so annoyed by Thomas’s presence last year that he and his cohorts were dubbed “the worst thing to happen to Jackson Hole” in 2011.  Thomas considers that a badge of pride.

Your community perceived us as an enemy, because we dared to reveal the truth concerning the sin of abortion. The city was so offended by this “revolutionary act,” that we won the dubious distinction of being “the worst thing to happen in Jackson, Wyoming, in 2011.” How could this happen in the land of the free and the home of the brave? It is not hard to discern, once good is perceived as evil and evil is perceived as good (Isaiah 5:20). 

We all know what caused the harsh reaction. It centered on the graphic pictures. Sadly, you were more offended by these pictures than the fact that this abomination was actually taking place in your city at the hand of abortionist Brent Blue. If something is so horrible that we cannot look upon it, perhaps we ought to stop doing it. You considered us enemies for exposing this truth. You blamed the messengers, not the man doing this horrible deed.

Thomas and Pastor Mark Holick have worked together many times, including the last time they visited Jackson Hole, just last year. At the 2011 visit, Operation Save America’s followers were arrested for violating an injunction that barred them from protesting at a Boy Scout event being held at the same time.  This year, they expect to try again

When asked why Operation Save America chose to come during the event a second time, pastor Mark Holick of Spirit One Ministries said the reasons are purely practical.

“It’s just that it’s the same weekend we came last year and it works for everyone,” he said.

As a result of their appearance, the Boy Scout event is likely to lose a majority of its participants, as parents choose to keep their children home rather than have them potentially view the graphic posters.  And schools are being warned about potential fallout as the anti-choice group roams the streets while in town.

Pam Shea, superintendent of Teton County School District No. 1, also issued a press release midday Friday: “It is anticipated that one or both groups may be protesting on the public sidewalks near school district property. Due to the disruption of the educational process caused by Operation Save America last year, TCSD #1 has contacted the groups to inform them that they are not allowed to protest on school district property and to specifically request that they refrain from using loud speakers or impeding students’ access to and from school.”

Wyoming is one of five states being targeted in the 2012 “States of Refuge” tour, along with North Dakota, South Dakota, Mississippi and Arkansas.