Abortion Petitioners Call the Police on Pro-Life Students: How to Interact with Opposition and Know Your Rights 

Jordan Estabrook - 18 Apr 2024

GUEST POST by Jeremiah Zimmerman, member of University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Students for Life

In Nebraska, pro-abortion advocates are pushing a ballot initiative for the November polls that would add an abortion-enshrining amendment to the state’s constitution. The proposed amendment would provide a “fundamental right to abortion until fetal viability” according to “the professional judgment of the patient’s treating health care practitioner.” 

Seven other states have similar amendments on the ballot.  The vagueness of “fetal viability” according to “the professional judgment of the patient’s treating health care practitioner” is code for abortion for all nine months of pregnancy in those states. These health care practitioners are abortionists, who have a monetary interest in performing abortions. 

READ MORE: Abortion IS on the Ballot: The Top Pro-Life Ballot Initiatives for 2024 — SFL Action ( 

Since an unknown recent time, people are paid full-time wages by pro-abortion groups to get petitions for the ballot initiative. Some workers said that they receive one-hour training before they are sent out to busy spots. Last week, we not only encountered said advocates, but navigated how to deal with them peacefully and lawfully.  

There was a petitioner on the southwest side of the student union at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln City Campus. Our University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Students for Life group and other pro-lifers formed a group chat to inform each other when and where petitioners are getting signatures. When I was informed of the petitioner’s presence, I made a sign that said, “Decline to Sign!” and headed to the student union. 

When I approached where the petitioner was collecting signatures, she politely asked me if I would like to sign a petition protecting women’s reproductive rights. The ballot initiative is euphemistically named “Protect Our Rights.” I declined to sign.  

She wished me well and I did the same. I then stood about fifteen feet away from her with my sign. Simply standing with a sign causes potential petition-signers to lack interest, because most people naturally avoid conflict. She moved around and I stood in the area for about 20 minutes. Another girl from our group, Cecilia King, joined me as she was praying.  

This started what could’ve been a fiasco. When the petitioner told me to stop harassing her, I told her that I was on a public sidewalk. She then made a phone call, and shortly afterward a man approached me and accused me of harassment. We stood firm, and once again told them we at a right to be on a public sidewalk.  

Even though I had to leave, Cecelia stayed and held the sign, and the man called the police. Bell Orsi, the head of UNL Students for Life, came to record the interaction with the police. We interacted calmly with the police, who then told the man and the petitioner that we had a right to protest in a public space so long as we did not verbally harass them or come too close physically. 

Pro-abortion groups will do anything they can to intimidate their opponents. Pro-life groups and individuals need to know their rights and do anything they can within those parameters to fight against the killing of innocent human beings. Whether that be keeping petitioners busy by asking questions, informing as many people as possible about the misleading language of pro-abortion initiatives, or standing next to a petitioner with a sign, all counteractions are important. 

Obey the law but know your rights and the law that you’re obeying. I’m proud of our SFLA group for peacefully counterprotesting, knowing the law, recording interactions, and being respectful towards the police and our opposition.  

READ NEXT: WATCH: Formerly Firebombed Pregnancy Center Gets Vandalized Again

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