Thirty years ago this week, pro-life volunteers from several churches in central Arkansas protested outside an abortion facility down the street from Little Rock’s War Memorial Stadium, where the Arkansas Razorbacks played.
The pro-life demonstration was known as the “Salt Assault.”
We covered the demonstration in the January 1990 volume of The Arkansas Citizen, which was a special news insert with published for Focus on the Family’s Citizen magazine.
Below is an excerpt from from our original coverage of the demonstration 30 years ago:
An estimated 10,000 Arkansans were confronted with the pro-life message Dec.2 when a group representing seven Little Rock area churches congregated on the sidewalk in front of an abortion clinic near War Memorial Stadium.
That Saturday was the Southwest Conference match-up between the Arkansas Razorbacks and Southern Methodist University, which drew an estimated crowd of 50,000 fans.
Members of the sidewalk education effort, called Salt Assault, carried signs such as “Babies Killed Here,” “It Hurts” and “Equal Rights For Unborn Women” and endured obscene gestures by detractors or gained encouragement from supporters honking their horns.
Every two or three months all the churches involved in Friends of Life gather for such a picket at the clinic at the West Markham Professional Building.
“We want to try to have the ladies who sidewalk counsel to share the gospel of Jesus Christ and let them (young women coming to the clinic) know that someone cares about them and the baby,” said Randy Minton. He and Joe Garnett, both of Cabot, co-founded the group about a year and a half ago.
“The reason we’re there is to educate the Christians and the general public who drive by about what’s happening in our city,” Minton said. “We’re also involved in supporting in any way we can the crisis pregnancy centers in Central Arkansas.”
“People need to be aware that (this) is a baby they’re killing . . . if we can reach the true Christians and they become aware and convicted of what’s happening, then we can put an end to abortion in America,” Minton said.
This abortion clinic is one of the few in Arkansas where clients must pass sidewalk counselors in the back alley to reach the clinic doors. Minton said counselors in the past had been confronted by police, who asked the group to get off private property, but research of public records indicated the area was a public alley, so the counselors remained.
Why are some Christians so reticent to take a stand on the abortion issue? “I say that it’s back to the issue that they either haven’t thought about it enough or their hearts are hard to the issue and that means they’ve really got a problem,” Minton said. “We’re dealing with another life that God has pre-ordained to be here. When someone really comes to grips with that issue, I feel they’ll be convicted about what’s happening.”
It’s worth noting that pro-lifers still gather and demonstrate in Arkansas.
In October, Arkansans protested abortion statewide as part of the annual Life Chain event.
Arkansas also recently wrapped up another successful 40 Days for Life prayer campaign, which saved the life of at least one unborn child.