Abortion Vigil

I thought this was a really powerful story made by Hungry Beast.

I’m not going to comment on the content of the video yet, just watch it for now.

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6 Replies to “Abortion Vigil”

  1. The good thing about being pro choice is, I believe the anti-abortionists have a right to protest too. My issue though, is with the location where they choose to protest. If I was to stand out the front of a church, making anti-religion statements, I would be moved along by police or arrested. If I was to protest out the front of a business, say McDonalds, because I wasn’t happy with something, I would be moved along too, and I’m pretty sure Macca’s would have their lawyers looking to sue me for restraint of trade or something. But the anti-abortionists are free to protest, and are even given police protection. In a society that is meant to have the same laws for all, why is there this imbalance?

  2. Wow Megan, thanks for posting that, very powerful. I wholeheartedly agree with Rebecca above. Whatever your opinion, protesting outside these clinics is cruel. I used to work next to an abortion clinic with a protest group outside every morning. In 5 years, not once did I see a woman turn away and say, ‘yes, please help me raise my child’. Instead I saw many women and men verbally and sometimes physically harrassed as they walked into the clinic. I saw more shaming, taunting and prayer than I did any offer of help.

    To be clear, I’m not equating prayer in itself to harrassment, but I do believe prayer used to gain attention for your cause or to intimidate and scare others is wrong (and presumably goes against its purpose). If God is truly everywhere, why must these prayer vigils be located outside abortion clinics? Surely such prayers can be said anywhere and at anytime and have the same effect. I believe the pomp and ceremony that goes on outside abortion clinics is purely to draw attention to the cause. To me, it doesn’t look or feel like an offer of help.

    I’m aware that this post may be read by many who are anti-abortion. Although I personally believe that no one has the right to force a woman to have a child, I do agree that as a society we do not offer enough support to those who may want to have their child but may not have the finances or emotional support to raise that child. This is where and to who help should be offerred. If you are anti-abortion and want to help these women and their partners (the majority of people I saw walk into the clinic did so with their partner) and their unborn child, practicle, substantial and ongoing assistance way before the point of walking into a clinic is what is required. This assistance should also be offered without the pressure to believe in God or become part of the Church. I believe a lot of the assistance currently offered is not accepted because people are afraid of the Church and it’s ‘craziness’.

    I think those wanting to help could achieve much more by eliminating the perception of ‘religious craziness’ (primarily fuelled by chanting prayer outside of abortion clinics) and replace this with real, practicle, non-judgemental help at an appropriate time and place. And most of all, to have the grace to accept an individua/couples decision once they have made it and then leave them in peace.

  3. Where does the childs right to life come into any of this? We talk so much about a womans right to choose whether she wants to keep the baby or not, but what about the child. At what gestational age do you consider that child to be alive? Is it at 20 weeks? And if so what has changed from being 19 weeks to being 20 weeks that makes all the difference? What right do we have to kill them?
    I may not necessarily agree with the people being outside the abortion clinic, but I do congratulate them on their courage to stand up for the childs right to life. And do you not think that the 1 or 2 lives that they have saved from being there means nothing? I would encourage and challenge you to research abortion and what it is, what it means, and the effects it has on peoples lives. Look it up on UTube and google, and if you are not affected by those images then I’m sorry but you have a cold heart.
    In the interview Laura said that abortion is not used as a contraception – that is false. Some women do use it as a contraceptive. I have read interveiws from doctors who have performed abortions, and they confirmed that. She also said “We are just women who need to have an option if accidents happen” To me this is a cope out. If you are sexually active then there is a high chance of getting pregnant. It’s the way we are, sex is enjoyable but it is also for creating new life. If you are not ready to be a parent, then don’t engage in sexual activity. Laura also made the statement “Why are men allowed to protest on a womans choice?” I would have to ask “Why are women allowed to make this choice without the agreement of the father? Why is it ok for a women to make this kind of a decision without the man being involved – is not this child as much as his as it is hers? I have heard the heart ache of men who’s partners have had the abortion and what scar and pain that has left on their life. Looking at children down the street that their own child would be the age of and wondering ‘what would they look like right now?’ You see this issue is not just about a woman. It is about men as well. I am ashamed that the womens movement has pushed so hard that we are degrading our men and pushing them out of the picture. It was interesting to me Ronans statement about people yelling ‘What do you know your a man, you don’t have a womb and you never will’ as much as that is true it does not mean that it wont affect a man. Just like he said about the Sign LOST FATHERHOOD that a man held up at a rally. Because that is the reality of it. A father losses the child as much as the mother does.
    Also what about Ronans testimony of the woman who shouted out ‘I have no choice’. I’ve heard stories of women who were pressured into abortions and they feel they had no choice. I am glad they were there to help this woman feel like she did have a choice and that she could get the help she wanted. To have someone say to them “thankyou for stopping me going in” and being appreciative of the fact that she is now holding her child in her arms, and that she knows she will get the support she needs – does that mean nothing to you? To Lauras statement “You gotta be a good parent, you can’t just go and have children” How do you know if you are going to be a good parent until you actually go and do it? I didn’t know if I was going to be a good parent when I had my first child, but I wasn’t going to kill it just because I had doubts about my ability to be a mother.
    I wasn’t at the rally so I don’t know what the Catholics were saying, but in that video I didn’t see any of them shouting out or being rude. I only saw that on the side of Laura. I don’t think it would be easy to stand out there coping all the abuse and being frowned upon by on lookers, so I give those Catholics credit for wanting to stand up for what they believe in – giving a child the right to life, and helping people choose to give their child life. If they were not out there in the street then I am not sure those women who actually wanted to save their babies life would have had the support to do it. It gave them the option. So as much as you might be against people rallying outside abortion clinics – think of the lives that have been saved because they were there. Or is life just not that important?
    Thanks Megan for sharing this post. It is another peice of information that I can gather to put in my folder about abortion.

    1. http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/crc.htm
      “Recalling that, in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations has proclaimed that childhood is entitled to special care and assistance,”
      Article 1
      “For the purposes of the present Convention, a child means every human being below the age of eighteen years unless under the law applicable to the child, majority is attained earlier. ”

      Article 6
      “1. States Parties recognize that every child has the inherent right to life.”

      The United Nations when it negotiated and approved that document, did not make the distinction between whether or not a child had yet been born or not; because Australia is a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, it has the weight of law in Australia.
      It follows that because there is no distinction at law between a child that has or has not been born, that there is also no distinction at law of the rights that they have. “Pro-Choice” therefore is a synonym at law for a wilful violation of a child’s rights.
      Both the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child affirm children’s life to life; therefore willful violation of a child’s right to life is an admission at law of murder.

      Don’t beat about the bush. So called “Pro-Choice” is the same as “Pro-Murder” and that’s all there is to it. Is a reminder of Exodus 20:13 in order?

      I addressed this further in this blog post last September:
      http://rollo75.blogspot.com/2010/09/horse-1108-am-i-really-not-thinking.html

      But to respond to the idea that anti-abortionists should protest somewhere else. Why? Protest is an expression of objection; the best place to make an objection is directly in front of the thing you’re objecting to. I’ll even go as far as to suggest that direct harassment is a noble cause if it has the effect of disturbing or stopping behaviour which is morally and legally corrupt.

  4. The man strikes me as profoundly in touch with the right way to respond to abortion. He acknowledges the problem of the choice brought about by our fallen nature, but works to make it right again with everything in his being by offering another choice through more than just words and ideas, but through direct, intimate actions of love and charity.

    The woman strikes me as someone who has been deeply scarred by the actions of those who have responded to abortion poorly. While her pain is real and her anger towards their actions are just, I feel it has blinded her to what she’s really fighting for and hurt her cause gravely. She expresses great anger at the actions of those ignorant few, but has become one herself… hatred once again begets hatred.

    I am validated to find another man voicing my feelings on abortion so eloquently. Abortion is such a horrific thing in reality. I feel sickened whenever I hear the term “a woman’s right to choose” used to re-direct attention away from the reality of the thing itself. When the pretence is stripped away, abortion is simply a discussion about what conditions must be present to make terminating the life of an infant acceptable. I do not mean to trivialise the very real terror that so many women endure when faced with the choice, especially when the child would be born into a seemingly cruel circumstance, but tragically sorrow does not change the reality of the choice.

    I suppose the problem arises when we behave like there are only two choices. Either the child is killed now to avoid a life of suffering (or, assuming the discussion is mother-centric, to avoid the burden of motherhood in unfortunate circumstances), or the child is allowed birth and in turn a life of needless suffering (or, assuming the discussion is mother-centric, committing someone to a responsibility they are unequipped to deal with or do not wish to bare). Is this not a rather manipulative distortion of reality? Can we suppose the child will not be able to overcome their circumstances as so many of us have? Can we end the life of an infant out of a desire to avoid the natural consequences of our sexual activity (excluding cases of rape)? Has every avenue to provide for the child really been explored (either financially or personally)?

    But these questions do not come to the point. I think the man in the video touched on it perfectly.

    What are WE doing to give these women more choices?

    In other words, perhaps the responsibility is, equally, with those surrounding the potential-mother. Humanity has always functioned (and must continue to if we intend to survive and live fully) through community and collaboration… but the past century has drastically altered that understanding of how we operate. It’s easy to see a woman walking into an abortion clinic and disregard the actions (or in-action) of those around her. Perhaps, in all her anguish, she had not even been AWARE that there was another choice.

    I think this is why we tend to pretend there are only two choices. The other choice requires us to take responsibility too.

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