Tuesday, April 20, 1999

Hawaii State Seal

Abortion-rights literature
posted on legislator’s door

By Mary Adamski


A women's rights organization taped its pro-choice literature to the door of state Rep. Michael Kahikina (D, Barbers Point-Waianae) in the latest assertion that lawmakers' doors at the state Capitol are a forum for public expression.

Liz Rees, spokeswoman for Refuse & Resist, said the action yesterday responded to an anti-abortion item Kahikina displays on his door. The legislator posted a small poster comparing the number of people killed in major wars since the American Revolution with the number of abortions since it was legalized in 1973.

Rees said that the anti-abortion message gives encouragement to the sort of people who bomb abortion clinics and murder doctors who perform abortions. She said her group chose this time to protest because of an anti-abortion demonstration this week in Buffalo, N.Y. "Against Abortion? Then Don't Have One," said one sign she posted.

Mitch Kahle, president of the Citizens for Separation of State and Church, said he invited Refuse & Resist and other organizations to post their messages on lawmakers' doors to support his position that if lawmakers can do it, so can the public. His organization maintains that state administrative rules prohibit even lawmakers from posting personal viewpoints on their doors.

Five minutes after demonstrators and television cameramen left the vicinity, House Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Ebata removed the items taped by Rees and Kahle. Ebata said the signs, as well as several posted over the past two weeks by Kahle's group, are held at the security guard office to be reclaimed by the demonstrators.

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