Jan. 22 marked the 33rd anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling. Roe v. Wade, which overturned up to 40 state laws on abortion regulation, divided the United States into “pro-choice” and “pro-life” camps and inspired grassroots activism.I’ve proudly been in the pro-life camp for a long time now. No one should shy away from discussing how they feel about something and why they feel that way, simply because some one might get offended. If we continue to do so, then we become victims of “political correctness.”
I first started to call myself pro-life after I saw a sonogram for the first time in person. This moving “experience” of seeing life before birth basically put an end to any thought in my mind that the unborn is simply a “blob of tissues” or that a fetus is nothing more than part of a woman’s body. The unborn is, without a doubt, a living being. To suggest otherwise is an argument that can be refuted simply with a sonogram. It doesn’t get clearer than that.
The media chooses to misreprensent pro-lifers in the form of extreme examples, like individuals who scream or throw things at abortion clinics. I’ve only seen the clinic a few times. Sure, there were a few nuts there, but only a few. The majority are actually self-proclaimed sidewalk conunselors at those same clinics giving young women something that eluded them up until that point: compassion, hope, alternative options and information on free pregnancy services. Sometimes they are successful, other times they are not so sucessful. While the media goes on to show the wackos on television, they neglect to show the ones who actually save women from doing something that they might have regretted. The pro-life side is a not a group of hasselers, it’s a side that really shows love and compassion for women, too. It is embodied in these “counselors.”
Also in the media, you may have heard the campaign phrase “Save Roe” echoed by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. What the media again neglects to say is that “Jane Roe” (whose real name is Norma McCovery) is not celebrating the anniversary of Roe v. Wade at all. Once an abortion-rights supporter, Ms. McCorvey has since switched sides, now a vocal anti-abortion activist. She has started a ministry called “Roe No More” to fight against abortion rights with the aim of creating a mobile counseling center for pregnant women in Dallas. You can find Norma’s story on http://www.leaderu.com/norma/.
Ms. Corvey and many others in the Pro-Life movement are Christians, but the great feature about this movement is the diversity it brings. Being pro-life sometimes is often linked to Christian conservatism, but thats not always true. Pro-life people are diverse in economic status, race, religion and education, yet, they are unified by the concept that all humans, especially the innocent unborn, have an inherent right to life. The url, http://www.godlessprolifers.org/home.html is a website authored by the Atheist and Agnostic Pro-Life League. There is also Pro-Life Alliance of Gay and Lesbians (http://www.plagal.org) and they argue that “human rights” start where human life begins. Others argue that the pro-life position is in fact pro-woman. They are the feminists for life coalition, (http://www.feministsforlife.org/). So many different walks of life come together because of a shared respect for life.
We all have had some discussion in Political Science, Communication and English classes about how the media often misreprsents groups of people, African Americans, women, gays and lesbians, students, and more. Well, I’m here to say they’ve misrepresented us, too. It’s not my intention to convert anyone on this issue, but at least to reclaim the image that the opposition groups and various media have done an excellent job of tarnishing.
Anthony Maalouf is a senior majoring in political science with a minor in Spanish.