PP: Go Fund Yourself:By Brenna Lewis, SFLA Staff Writer
On July 10th, 2018, Carson Rayhill and his group of 12 Loogootee, Indiana pro-lifers headed an hour north to Bloomington to hold a rally. Bloomington is home to the nearest Planned Parenthood, and the Monroe County Council was having a vote to fund the facility. As a liberal county full of pro-abortion politicians, the Bloomington Planned Parenthood never has an issue receiving its taxpayer funding – but that wasn’t going to stop Loogootee Students for Life from showing up and taking a stand. Carson said:
“We travel to Bloomington, on average, every other month. Normally we hold rallies in front of the clinic on days when women aren't going in, and anytime there is a pro-abortion event, we are always there to counter-protest. Each year, the council votes to fund PP, and for the past couple of years, we've gone down to challenge that. The first year we went to protest the funding of PP, we were the only ones there, so we left for a minute to grab some Taco Bell. When we returned, there was an ocean of Pink PP T-Shirts and people dressed in condom, breast/nipple, and birth control costumes, disregarding the number of children who were in the area. Over the last years, however, they haven't been as organized. They've just been more vulgar and aggressive. This year, there was no organized support for PP, but they were definitely more aggressive. We hadn't even made it across the street to the courthouse lawn before someone yelled out of their car, "I love abortion, I love Planned Parenthood!". Then, the floodgates opened, and two men on the corner where we were about to cross started threatening us, telling us to, "Get the f*** out of here with your bull****".”
Pro-abortion advocates can feel the tide turning for life. There’s a reason we’ve seen the violence and aggression continue to spike; they know they’re losing. Why else would a high school student group have to tolerate having “32oz sodas hurled out of car windows at [them] and on one occasion, french fries dumped on a member of [their] group?” The Loogootee students are completely accustomed to this abuse, which comes primarily from people decades older. The students noted that the age difference at these events is glaringly obvious with a pro-life average of 18 years old and a pro-abortion average of over 50. Ours truly is the Pro-Life Generation and we see it every day at events like this.
When the meeting commenced around 5:30pm that evening, Carson and his friends entered the Monroe County Courthouse to watch the absurdity unfold. Says Carson:
“In the meeting itself, the room was split 50/50 with people who supported PP and people who didn't. More people spoke about why they didn't deserve the funding. After all, the Bloomington clinic performs nearly 30 abortions every week and is currently under investigation for failing to report the possible sex abuse and human trafficking of 2 girls under the age of 16 (PP of IN has 49 complaints filed all around the state, [with] 2 at the Bloomington Clinic). This didn't matter; the council voted 6-1 to fund PP, [which] was the expected vote for weeks before the meeting. The local newspaper, however, came outside to get the pro-life generation's point of view on the vote. Never before have they given the pro-life side so much coverage.”
To the naked eye, the day may have felt like a lost battle. But to the keen observer, this event is a victorious indicator of a changing culture. The warriors for life are young, determined, and graceful, which stands in stark contrast to many pro-abortion advocates who espouse violence and hatred. We commend the students of Loogootee, one of last year’s SFLA Groups of the Year, for their successful event and overall dedication to making Bloomington abortion-free.
Need help countering a pro-abortion event in your city? Contact your SFLA Regional Coordinator!
We have exciting news to share for our clubs! Equal Rights Institute is a pro-life apologetics organization we’ve partnered with since Josh and Timothy Brahm launched it in 2014. As many of you know, ERI published the Equipped for Life Course last year. It’s designed to help SFLA clubs get trained in dialogue skills and the most persuasive pro-life arguments so they can change more minds and save more lives during their outreaches.
If you haven’t heard about the positive impact the course had on the University of Michigan club, you can check out their report here. (Short version: Their most timid members were begging for weekly outreaches after only completing the first two modules of the course!)
For those of you who are overwhelmed by the thought of fundraising, there is now another way you can get the course. ERI president Josh Brahm spent the last two months asking his donors to pay for scholarships so some SFLA clubs could take the course without spending a dime. As of today he’s raised the funds for 70 scholarships!
If you’re interested in getting the Equipped for Life course for free, and you’re willing to commit to getting your club through the course and doing at least one outreach within three months, go to EqualRightsInstitute.com/Apply and fill out the quick application.
For those of you who would prefer to fundraise for the course or just have your group members split the cost, ask your Regional Coordinator how you can get 10% off.
We can’t recommend this course to you enough. Lead your club through this course and work with your Regional Coordinator to bring one of SFLA’s outreach displays to your campus to spark productive conversations about abortion!