A pro-abortion feminist who once recounted in the New York Times that she had killed two of her three unborn children when she discovered she was pregnant with triplets was the keynote speaker at a women’s conference on Saturday, March 3, at Saint Mary’s College of California.
The daylong event, held at St. Mary’s Soda Activity Center, was entitled “Wo/men’s Conference 2012.” A description of the conference said, in part, “Our Catholic heritage charges us to ‘defend the goodness, dignity, and freedom of each person, and to foster sensitivity to social and ethical concerns,’ which are principles evident in the mission of Saint Mary's College of California.”
The keynoter for the conference was writer, lecturer, and “abortion rights advocate” Amy Richards. She is co-founder of the “third Wave Foundation.” Her biography on the “Soapbox” website says, in part: “Amy’s leadership and visionary work launched her as a primary spokesperson and leading voice for young feminist issues and for the past fifteen years Amy has assumed that role by lecturing at hundreds of venues, writing books and articles about feminism today, and making numerous media appearances all in an attempt to confirm that younger people are making bold and transformative contributions to their communities.”
On July 18, 2004, in a New York Times column headline “When One is Enough,” Richards related to writer Amy Barrett her justifications for killing two of her three children when Richards found out she was pregnant with triplets.
“My immediate response was, I cannot have triplets,” Richards was quoted as saying. “I was not married; I lived in a five-story walk-up in the East Village; I worked freelance; and I would have to go on bed rest in March. I lecture at colleges, and my biggest months are March and April. I would have to give up my main income for the rest of the year. There was a part of me that was sure I could work around that. But it was a matter of, Do I want to… Having felt physically fine up to this point, I got on the subway afterward, and all of a sudden, I felt ill. I didn't want to eat anything. What I was going through seemed like a very unnatural experience. On the subway, Peter [her boyfriend at the time] asked, ‘Shouldn't we consider having triplets?'' And I had this adverse reaction: ‘This is why they say it's the woman's choice, because you think I could just carry triplets. That's easy for you to say, but I'd have to give up my life.’ Not only would I have to be on bed rest at 20 weeks, I wouldn't be able to fly after 15. I was already at eight weeks. When I found out about the triplets, I felt like: It's not the back of a pickup at 16, but now I'm going to have to move to Staten Island. I'll never leave my house because I'll have to care for these children. I'll have to start shopping only at Costco and buying big jars of mayonnaise.”
On July 28, 2004, the Times published an addendum to their original column, which noted: “The column identified Ms. Richards as a freelancer at the time of her pregnancy but should have also disclosed that she is an abortion rights advocate who has worked with Planned Parenthood, as well as a co-founder of a feminist organization, the Third Wave Foundation, which has financed abortions.”
On the “Prostitution” page of procon.org (where Richards argued that prostitution should be legalized), her “affiliations and institutions” are listed. They include being a board member of “Choice USA,” and serving on the “Council of Advocates” for Planned Parenthood New York City.
Richards is also listed as a co-founder of the Third Wave Foundation, which operated an “Emergency Abortion Fund.” The fund began in 1998 and was in existence until 2011, and its mission statement reads: “Through the Emergency Abortion Fund, we have granted more than $200,000 to over 2,000 people. In order to make best use of our resources and expertise, Third Wave will no longer operate our own abortion fund, but will continue to fund organizations working to ensure reproductive freedom, including access to safe and affordable abortion.”
Other speakers and workshops at the event included one led by Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo. Buchanan has a 100% rating from Planned Parenthood, a 100% rating from NARAL, and a 100% rating from Equality California.
Another workshop was called “Her, Their, Hir: What Wo/men’s Spaces Mean for Gender Variant Individuals,” which was presented by Mckenzie Mullen, vice-president of the Queer Alliance at the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco.
The conference did include some pro-life groups, though in a much less conspicuous role. Representatives from the Gabriel Project, First Resort/Rachel's Vineyard, Bethany Christian Services, and Alpha Pregnancy Center manned tables at the event’s “Opportunities Fair.”