The mother of two teenage girls who were harassed by Democratic Pennsylvania State Rep. Brian Sims for protesting outside a Philadelphia Planned Parenthood a few weeks ago told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tuesday night that it was a “shocking experience,” but they had prayed for him following the incident.
Ashley Garecht had taken her 13- and 15-year-old daughters and their 15-year-old friend to Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, which is in Sims’ district, on Holy Thursday of the Easter Triduum to peacefully pray before they went to Mass.
During the disturbing encounter — which Sims live-streamed on Periscope — the unhinged Democrat offered $100 to anyone who could identify the young girls.
Garecht said the altercation that was caught on video was not the first interaction they’d had with Sims.
“He approached us about 20 minutes before that,” she explained. “He came in yelling at us and really was yelling very directly at the girls — very specifically at the girls. So I moved myself in between him and said ‘please talk to me, let’s have a conversation, the two of us as two adults,’ but he continued to yell at the girls and then eventually he left and about ten minutes later is when he came back videotaping us,” she continued.
“So, after our first altercation with him, you know, I went and talked to my girls and told them, you know, ‘I’m really sorry this happened. I’m really proud of you guys for being here,'” Garecht said. “This is something we wanted to do as a prayerful act of the service as we prepared for the Easter Triduum, which was going to begin that night with Holy Thursday Mass. And I told them, you know, sometimes it’s hard to do the right thing, but I was really proud of them.”
She continued, “Sadly, ironically, the two older girls looked at me and said, ‘Mom, that was nothing compared to what people were screaming at us at the March for Life in January.’ They went to the March for Life with their high school. So, I guess I was grateful that they had had some experience before. They were prepared for it and because they were able to kind of stay calm, that helped my younger daughter stay calm.”
Garecht added, “and, you know, we prayed for him then. I said we’d continue to pray for him and just try to do the right thing. And then he came back, again videotaping us.”
She said the shocking experience had her “adrenaline running.”
As Sims approached the group, he called them “pseudo-Christian protesters who are out here shaming young girls.” And then he offered to pay his followers to doxx them. “I’ve got $100 dollars for anyone who can identify any of these three,” he added as his phone camera panned the youngsters.
“I was concerned for my girls,” Garecht told Carlson. “I was genuinely trying to enter into just a dialogue with him to try to bring the situation — calm it down a little bit. And to say to him on film that we were just there just praying for these women and babies. We weren’t looking for an altercation — I never come to clinics looking for a fight. It’s always just with peaceful, prayerful intent,” she explained.
Garecht told Carlson that Sims’ threat to doxx her girls was concerning.
“I was concerned that he said multiple times that he wanted the identities of my daughters. We were at that point already done, we had finished our prayers and were leaving and so when I realized he wasn’t going to enter into any kind of productive dialogue, I thought, we’ll just continue our exit, we’ll just leave,” Garecht said.
Carlson asked her what she thought the Democrat’s attack on their white skin color was all about.
Garecht said she had no idea what he was talking about.
“My daughters and I are Caucasian but we were there to pray for all women. We certainly don’t look at the color of their skin as they come or go. My daughter’s friend is non-Caucasian, and that is very evident,” she noted, adding that the girl had “told him several times over the course of our interactions, ‘I’m not white, sir.'”
“We kinda got a laugh out of that because what he was saying literally just didn’t make sense,” Garecht said.
Sims also videotaped himself harassing an older woman who was praying the Rosary outside of the same Planned Parenthood last week.
After both videos became viral sensations, Sims went into damage control mode.
Sims posted a video onto Twitter Tuesday that sought to justify his hateful outbursts by further demonizing the pro-lifers. Sims explained that he has lived near the Planned Parenthood clinic for 15 years, and had seen lots of people going into the facility for “check-ups, for pap smears, for breast exams, for STD screenings, and yes–for abortions.”
He added: “In fact, it’s where I even treat for my life-saving PrEP medication and I’m grateful for the service they provide.” [PrRP is a pre-exposure prophylaxis used by people who do not have HIV but who are at substantial risk of getting it].
Sims said that as a volunteer escort at the facility he’d seen “the insults, the slurs, the attacks, and the racism that those protesters aim at mostly young girls who go there for clinical care.” However, the only insults, slurs, and attacks seen in the videos he took himself and posted online came from himself. He also accused the pro-lifers of “praying at” — not “for” — the people going in and out of the abortion clinic.
As a Planned Parenthood volunteer and supporter, I fully understand, respect, and appreciate the non-engagement policy that they have. I would not want to do anything that would interfere with the care that they’re providing to their patients. As an activist and an advocate, I know why pushing back against harassment and discrimination are a must even when they’re uncomfortable, but last week, I wasn’t a patient escort. I was a neighbor and a concerned citizen and I was aggressive. I know that two wrongs don’t make a right and I can do better and I will do better for the women of Pennsylvania.
I will fiercely protect a woman’s right to make the best choices for her health & her body, unimpeded. I also know that two wrongs don’t make a right, especially on the front lines of a civil rights battle. I can do better, and I will do better, for the women of Pennsylvania. pic.twitter.com/jURL1UX9qE
— Brian Sims (@BrianSimsPA) May 7, 2019