By Ray Stern
By New Times
By Amy Silverman
By Stephen Lemons
By Stephen Lemons
By Monica Alonzo
By Chris Parker
By New Times
One day, Finkel says, "I go, 'Hey, Beer Belly, I want you to know that if your wife ever needs an abortion, I'll do one for free. Not because I'm a nice guy, but just because I want to get between her l-e-e-e-e-gs.'
"He shit his pants!"
The next time the man showed up, his ears were covered with headphones.
Years ago, Jakubczyk got hold of Finkel's confidential file at the Arizona Board of Osteopathic Examiners and began handing out shorthand descriptions of complaints that were never substantiated. It took a large law firm and thousands of dollars to stop him and keep the board's staff from doing it again.
"I have this law firm that works for me, I call them the eight gnawing Jews--Sacks Tierney--and they just . . . bit their ass for me," Finkel says.
Speaking of asses, Finkel describes one of the 30 complaints on file against him--27 dismissed, two pending, one "Letter of Concern" regarding the matter of packing heat while performing abortions. Specifically, he says, a patient was upset because, as Finkel paraphrases (in the falsetto he often uses to imitate patients), "He gently inserted his finger up my ass."
The complaint was dismissed, but the topic leads to a lively dinner table discussion.
"There's stuff up your ass," Finkel says passionately, explaining the necessity for rectal examinations. "You've gotta go for it."
The vagina is like a sock, he continues, but the rectum is a tube that goes all the way up and behind the vagina. "So the vagina stops here," he pantomimes, "but you can go up underneath the uterus, through the rectum, and feel all sorts of stuff underneath it. You can feel colon cancer, you can feel polyps. . . . Why do you think I want to get up in the stirrups next week and have some guy slam his finger up my ass?"
Diana, who recently underwent a hysterectomy, remarks, as she's clearing the table, "All my stuff is gone except my vagina. That's it."
"And a mighty nice vagina it is, too," her husband announces.
"Well, thank you very much, dear. I appreciate that."
They laugh, and Diana opens another bottle of wine.
In following Our Lord's example of love for all people, we walk and pray to save the lives of precious, innocent babies!
--Children of the Rosary literature
Jesus loves you. The rest of us think you're an asshole.
--message on a card Dr. Brian Finkel hands out to pro-life protesters
"We'd like to reach out to you," Sara Thompson calls from across the parking lot that serves the office complex housing Finkel's abortion clinic. She is prohibited by law--the permanent injunction Finkel got years ago--from coming any closer. When Thompson, who's with a group called Children of the Rosary, realizes the woman waiting outside the clinic is a newspaper reporter, not an abortion candidate, she's hesitant to hand over her pro-life literature. It's hard to come by, she explains, offering it grudgingly. "Maybe it's something you can pass on."
The pamphlets are old and yellowed, clutched in sweaty hands for hours as Thompson and a few others march up and down the sidewalk--usually every Wednesday and Saturday morning--praying aloud and waving signs with messages like "ABORTION: America's Holocaust" and pictures of fetuses.
Thompson, who appears to be in her early 50s, wears Keds and a baby blue tank top. Her hair is pulled back. She says she felt a "special calling" eight years ago to protest outside abortion clinics.
But in that eight years, she admits, she's not sure she's changed even one woman's mind.
She's not at all discouraged. "I'm doing God's work, and what happens afterward is his decision."
She says that most abortionists she's protested against ignore pro-life demonstrators. Thompson says Finkel reacts. "Usually, going in, he signals us with his finger. He shouts obscenities."
Thompson and the other members of The Children of the Rosary are peaceful today, an unseasonably cool Wednesday in early June. Finkel watches from his office window; the cops have warned him not to engage the protesters. You never know who might get violent.
And this group is capable, Finkel insists. "Children of the Rosary is usually a very virulent, malicious group of harpies for Jesus," he says later that afternoon. He starts in on Kathy Sabelko, who used to run the group in Phoenix. In the early 1990s she was a major opponent of Phoenix's "bubble law," which prohibited anti-abortion protesters from coming within eight feet of anyone entering an abortion clinic. The law has since been overturned by the courts.
Sabelko calls Finkel "Mister," saying that he's no doctor.
He calls her a "double-butt ugly mean-spirited bitch."
"It's reasonably apparent that she's physically challenged. She's just unattractive. Really, really unattractive," Finkel says. "And I don't understand why she has this hatred for women, but she's one of these really mean-spirited Catholic misogynists who doesn't like women."
This morning's protesters were different, he says. "Now you just have a bunch of Wal-Mart shoppers showing up out front. Retirees--it's obvious just looking at them they're retirees. They're on a budget, they don't have a lot of money, they have a lot of free time. And they're looking for an ego feed. 'Somebody tell me I'm important, please.' They've never been important in their lives at all. So they come down here to my office, and they prey on people."