Spokane, WA – Since February, Teresa Van Camp has been picketing at Spokane’s
Planned Parenthood, and taking pictures of anyone coming or going. When it
became known, the local press wrote, “Woman Vows to Put Pictures on Internet.”
Van Camp replies, “Well, I never vowed anything, but I do send photos off to
friends in cyberspace in the hope they will be aired some day.”
The idea first came on the heels of the $109 million judgment in the
Planned Parenthood v. ACLA
case (Life Advocate
, March/April 1999). Van Camp read that Neal Horsley, producer of the infamous
Nuremberg Files website, said that not only did he intend to keep his website
going, he was going to turn up the heat by adding a new “webcam” feature which
would carry live video and recent still photos of people entering and leaving
“A camera at a killing center causes great consternation,” said Van Camp. “I
now have at least 100 photos of unseemly gestures in my collection.”
Van Camp been roundly condemned in letters to the editor, and some people are
jumping out of their cars and chasing her. One post-abortion woman left death
threats on her message phone and business phone which were reported to the FBI.
“I guess she’d never heard of Caller I.D,” she says with a grin.
To counteract Van Camp’s picture-taking, guards Chris and Rudy of Planned
Parenthood began to hold up pro-abortion signs, and several “volunteers”
brought umbrellas to “protect the privacy” of their clients.
One day, while chatting amicably with Rudy, Van Camp noticed a tree that was on
city property, and said aloud, “You know, I ought to climb up in that tree.
I’ll bet I could get some good shots from up there.”
The escorts just laughed and one said, “I’d like to see that!”
But the following week, Van camp donned her camera, signs, jacket, earmuffs,
extra film, and a little stepladder, and began her nearly suicidal ascent.
“The stepladder was just a little too short,” she recalls, “so I put a
Tupperware container on top of it, which fell off as I hoisted my bod onto a
branch. I was up a tree without a ladder.”
For five and a half hours she sat in her tree.
“Rudy said he would get me down if I promised to go home. But since I didn’t
want to do that, he said I’d have to get the fire department to come,” she says.
Meanwhile, one abortionist leaving for lunch, rolled down his window and yelled
up at her, “Teresa! Your ---- must be getting sore, you’ve been up there for
hours, you ------- -----!”
Van Camp smiled and waved.
A clinic worker came out and stared up at her.
“What? Are you crazy? Do you want to be known as the lady in the tree?”
She smiled and said, “Why not?”
The woman swore and stomped away.
Eventually, one of the Catholic men, who come to say the Rosary every Friday,
was brave enough to help her get her down. The guards took pictures of the
She has been up a tree ever since.
Van Camp purchased a taller ladder for the next week’s climb.
“I also decided I should sing while I’m in my tree,” she said. “I printed my
song on a poster, hung it from a branch, and sang it at the top of my lungs for
a full hour.”
Finally, unable to stand it any longer, the guards brought a car up close to
the tree and drowned her out with loud rock music. They also manufactured a
giant kite out of 2x4’s and a sheet, which they hoist in the air in an attempt
to block her pictures.
Still, the song goes forth and, according to Van Camp causes visible distress
to the abortionists.
The words to Van Camp’s “Tree Song,” sung to the tune of “Rock-a-bye Baby,”are: