The Magazine

Weapon of Choice

Inside the mind of an abortion-rights warrior.

May 19, 2008, Vol. 13, No. 34 • By JOAN FRAWLEY DESMOND
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Is Susan Wicklund a typical abortion doctor? She is certainly a curious figure. Contrary to the stereotypes advanced within the anti-abortion movement, she reveals not a whit of interest in making money or in securing her own happiness. When she tries to sell her clinic, once the fulfillment of her professional dreams, no buyers come forward. Her husband has drifted away. Wicklund's determination is beyond grim. What her supporters would have us applaud as inspiring dedication to an unquestionable good comes off as an unhealthy fixation on a deranged sense of duty.

Joan Frawley Desmond, who writes on religious and social issues for a variety of publications, lives in Maryland.