BREAKING: Pro-life Cemetary of the Innocents Torn down – thrown in the trash

This morning, Wednesday April 16th, a pro-life “Cemetery of the Innocents” was torn down and thrown in the trash at the University of Washington. Although the event was approved at the very last minute by the school administration, students set-up the flags in their approved, high-traffic area to memorialize the victims of abortion. The pro-life group on campus, “Students for Human Life” hosted the display.
uw

After leaving the display for a brief period of time the students came back to the whole display completely missing – most flags and other display materials thrown in the trash can.

Instead of giving up, the students went through the trash can, salvaged what they could and put up the display as soon as possible.

uw1

Although the perpetrators of this crime have yet to be identified, the group will go on with their display and turning in a report to the campus police.

Check here for updates as this story is breaking and is developing.

JHU Voice for Choice Bakes for Abortion

JHU Voice for ChoiceLast Spring, the student government at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) refused to approve the new pro-life group on campus,  JHU Voice for Life. Student government members were “concerned” about letting a group like Voice for Life, which wanted to educate students about abortion and reach out to women facing unplanned pregnancies. The student government members even got nasty, with one comparing pro-life students to a white supremicist group.

It’s been a year now, and JHU Voice for Life is standing strong on their campus, engaging in respectful discussions about abortion and reaching out to those most vulnerable in Baltimore. They even won our Students for Life of America 2014 New Group of the Year award this January. However, the pro-abortion group that launched to counter Voice for Life has taken a different direction…seeing how far outside the mainstream they can go. Last Spring, SFLA reported that members of Voice for Choice went topless on campus for their inaugural event, “Tits at Twelve,” wearing only electric tape to cover themselves. (See here.)

JHU Penis CakeNow, they’ve done it again.  On April 4th, JHU Voice for Choice hosted a bake sale to raise money for the DC Abortion Fund. Yep, they sold yummy cookies and cupcakes to Johns Hopkins students in an effort to make sure thousands of babies in D.C. never had the chance to try them. In case you felt that men might have been overlooked in this effort– never fear! There was a delightful cake sold in the shape of male genitalia that could also be purchased to support abortion access.

JHU Voice for Choice- Bake saleThankfully, the group only collected $110 for the DC Abortion Fund, unlike the thousands of dollars Students for Life groups collect when they raise support for local pregnancy resource centers. JHU Voice for Choice claims to be an advocate for women on campus. However, they are only choosing to degrade women by funding abortions, which harm women physically and emotionally.

May Event-in-a-Box

Stand Up

Over the past few months, many of you have been challenged to overcome controversy and persevere through discrimination. You have been asked to engage and participate while also working hard as a student. While there are many times when we are pressured to give up, our determination to abolish abortion remains strong.

Being an abortion abolitionist is no easy task. You are asked to sacrifice time, energy, and even relationships. You are placed in uncomfortable situations. Your pro-life message is questioned and criticized, and at times, your resolve is tested. But, here’s the good news– we are winning!

Thanks to your courageous efforts, we have witnessed many amazing victories this year. Here are some of the highlights:

As we come to the end of our school year, we ask that you end your year with at least 1 more victory! Request this month’s Event-in-a-Box, and join us in celebrating the achievements of the pro-life movement as we continue to move forward in changing culture. 

Request a box

*FREE boxes are provided to active pro-life students and student groups only.*

 

Questions? Comments? Email Missy (High School) or Beth (College) about your Event-in-a-Box concerns.

Apply for the 2014 Wilberforce Fellowship!

Are you a leader or officer in your campus pro-life group? Do you aspire to work in the pro-life movement full-time? Do you want to be mentored by a national pro-life leader?wilberforcefellows

If you answered “Yes” to all of these questions, then you should consider applying for the SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship!

What Students are Saying

“The Wilberforce Fellowship is a great opportunity to experience what is going on in our Movement. It provides an excellent “behind-the-scenes” look at the effort that many good-willed people are putting forth in an attempt to achieve justice for preborn children. You will have the opportunity to influence and be influenced by people of all ages, while focusing on the improvement of your leadership skills. I am thankful for my Wilberforce experience, and suggest that justice-seeking students seriously consider applying for it. ”  - Shea Hasenauer, 2010-2011 SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellow

The Mission

The mission of the Students for Life of America Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship is to raise up the next generation of pro-life leaders. We want to train student pro-life activists to be leaders on campus (and beyond) and to network those student leaders with their counterparts in the national pro-life movement to help further develop their skills. Simply put, the SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship is the training you need for a career in the pro-life movement!

What to Expect

During the 2014-2015 school year, Wilberforce Fellows will be…

  • Learning what it takes to be a leader by reviewing various books and publications and participating in bi-weekly webcasts for discussion and guest speaker lectures
  • Applying the skills they learn to their campus pro-life groups by organizing at least 2 activism/educational events and 1 training event
  • Assisting Students for Life of America in its mission of equipping the pro-life generation
  • Working with their National Wilberforce Mentor (a leader of an existing national pro-life organization) who will help network them with the national pro-life movement and assist in completion on their Fellowship Projects

The Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship will consume a couple of hours a week. At this time, no financial stipends are available.

The Kick-Off

On July 18-20, 2014, all SFLA Wilberforce Leadership Fellows will be flown to Washington, D.C. for the kick-off weekend training retreat including day-long training with representatives from the Leadership Training Institute. Flights, housing, and meals in the D.C. area will be covered by SFLA.

Who is Eligible to Apply

  • Any undergraduate, graduate, law, or med students may apply
  • Must be a current leader in a pro-life organization
  • Must be interested in pursuing a full-time career in the pro-life movement

Apply NOW

Download the SFLA Wilberforce-2014-ApplicationAll applications are due by April 30th. Interviews will be scheduled shortly thereafter. Selections will be made by May 17th. Please email your application to Brendan at bomorchoe@studentsforlife.org 

Lameduck: WV Gov Vetoes Fetal Pain Bill

Last night, the Governor of West Virginia vetoed a bill that would ban abortions after babies have been scientifically proven to feel pain. The previously declared “pro-life” Governor waited until the West Virginia legislative session ended to make it almost impossible to reverse his cowardly act.

CowardKristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, commented on this outrage, “Governor Tomblin’s veto of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act was a cowardly and outrageous act, which will allow hideous late-term abortions to continue in my home state of West Virginia. By vetoing this bill, the Governor as placed himself in the extreme minority, aligning his abortion views with those of President Barack Obama and Democratic National Committee. The majority of Americans and West Virginians stand against this extremist position…this human rights abuse of dismembering and killing babies who are capable of feeling extreme pain.

This bill has passed in 10 other states and even the U.S. House of Representatives – none of which considered the bill to be unconstitutional, as the Governor claimed. I believe this was the plan of the Democratic Leadership in West Virginia all along, to allow the bill to pass so their vulnerable Democrat members could vote pro-life before an important election and then have lame-duck Governor veto the bill. That’s not leadership.”

Students for Life of America is asking pro-lifers to call the Governor’s office at 1-888-438-2731 and remind him where the majority of Americans stand on this human rights issue. Plans are being made for a grassroots event in Charleston, the capitol of West Virginia, this week. Stay tuned for details!

Read the back story of the veto here.

“Abortion is a Gift from God”

Just this week Students for Life of America was on the University of Michigan campus with our “What Has Roe Done For Us?” display, educating and dialoging with students about how abortion exploits and harms women, only to find out that the university is apparently endorsing a different message to their students.

The University is currently sponsoring a pro-abortion display,“4000 Years of Choice”, which declares “Abortion as a Blessing” and a “gift from God,” directly countering to the truth put forth in SFLA’s Roe display which tells the stories of women like Jennifer Morbelli, Karnamaya Mongar, Tonya Reaves, and Marla Cardamone who were killed through legal abortion.  Further, the display declares that “Personhood for zygotes cruelly subverts the very idea of a culture of life and potentially criminalizes every pregnant woman.” Read Lifesitenews.com’s piece about the display.

Kristan Hawkins, Students for Life of America’s President, remarked, “Abortion is never safe for women, legal or illegal, and for the University of Michigan to have the audacity to use taxpayer dollars and a taxpayer-funded building to push forth an agenda and human rights violation that the majority of Americans oppose is disgusting.”

Just to be certain that the display was in fact publicly funded through taxpayer dollars, Tina Whittington, SFLA’s Executive Vice President, called the university’s Institute for Research on Women and Gender (IRWG) the host and co-sponsor of this display along with the UM’s Program for Sexual Rights and Reproductive Justice, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design.  After talking to Debra M. Schwartz, Senior Public Relations Representative for the IRWG, it was discovered that the University of Michigan paid $1,000 to have artist, Heather Ault, come onto campus to give a lecture, as a part of that lecture the artist let them display her “art display,” “4000 Years of Choice”, free of charge.  On the phone Debra said, “Contrary to what they are saying this display is not about pro-choice or even pro-abortion.  This is about the history of women learning to control their reproductive system.  Heather is trying to get past the hanger and the idea of back alley dirty abortions and celebrate the ways women, and men for that matter, can control their reproductive system through birth control and even by aborting a fetus.”  While Heather Ault is trying to portray herself as an abortion historian, the truth is that she is radical, abortion activist, and the University of Michigan has funded this message through taxpayer money.

Take a look at her “art” below and decide for yourself whether or not her display is not pro-abortion:

Source: http://bit.ly/1gKn5kW

Source: http://bit.ly/1gKn5kW

Why is the University of Michigan using taxpayer funds that declare that “Abortion is a gift from God?” Do they support this message? SFLA is calling for the University of Michigan to take down this display, to return the taxpayers money, and to ensure that only private money is used for displays and projects like these.  It is an outrage for the university to endorse this anti-human rights message that “abortion is a gift from God” and that it is “a blessing.”

Source: http://on.fb.me/1jE6H7E

Source: http://on.fb.me/1jE6H7E

Join us in this call to action by calling Mary Sue Coleman, President of UM at (734) 764-6270 or by emailing her at presoff@umich.edu and demanding that she sees that this display is taken down, that all taxpayer money is returned for this event and display, and that never again will UM align themselves so closely with abortion as to allow public funds to be invested in a flagrant agenda to support and promote abortion.

Hobby Lobby Arguments Heard

By: Kristan Hawkins, President of Students for Life of America

Question: What do Obamacare (aka the Affordable Care Act), a wood company owned by Mennonites, and Hobby Lobby have in common? Answer: The HHS mandate. For months, the conscientious owners of Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood, respectively, have been fighting for their constitutional right to religious liberty which has been squashed by the ACA’s contraception mandate. The mandate requires that all companies, regardless of their religious or ethical beliefs, be forced unrelentingly to provide abortion-causing drugs as part of their healthcare plans. If the companies refuse, even on grounds of conscience, they will face crippling fines that will shut them down in turn. To make matters worse, these companies cannot simply stop providing healthcare coverage, or – you guessed it – more crippling fines will ensue and effectively shut them down.

Today, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood will argue their long-fought case before the Supreme Court. The companies are fighting for the integrity of their right to religious liberty, and they are doing so to ensure an even more fundamental right: the right to life.

Major media outlets and rabidly pro-abortion websites like Mother Jones have mocked Hobby Lobby’s reason for fighting the mandate, that is, that contraceptives like the Pill and Plan B are abortifacients. They cite claims that these drugs do not have the ability to cause an abortion, but these conclusions have only been reached because they rely on modified definitions of “pregnancy” that claim a woman is not pregnant until her newly-conceived child has implanted in her womb.

This is shoddy science at best, and embryology universally recognizes the existence of a unique human being from the moment of fertilization, not implantation. Nevertheless, the definition of pregnancy-as-implantation that has been adopted by some prominent medical organizations erroneously suggests that, when an embryo is destroyed or expelled by drugs such as Plan B and the Pill, an abortion does not occur since the woman was not – they claim – “pregnant” in the first place. This is semantics at its finest and a shoddy excuse for denying scientific reality.

In addition to serving as class one carcinogens to the women who ingest them, the drugs that are being mandated by healthcare plans within the ACA are proven threats to the lives of innumerable pre-born children. Regardless of the delusional semantics that have been employed by abortion zealots to argue otherwise, drugs like the birth control pill and the morning after pill are proven abortifacients that can end human life by making the womb inhospitable to embryos that have already been conceived in the woman’s body. As a result, these children can die and be expelled from a woman’s body without her ever knowing that she had conceived.

Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood have courageously taken a stand against the antic of an administration that would force them to be party to unconscionable acts. In the face of being fined out of business, these companies and their owners have chosen to put the right to life before the fecundity of their coffers. We stand with Hobby Lobby, Conestoga Wood, and every business that believes in doing what is right for the most vulnerable among us.

Another Victory: High School Caves & Restores Free Speech to Pro-Life Students

Yesterday, Branford High School in Branford, CT caved into demands made by Alliance Defending Freedom on behalf of Branford High School Students for Life. More than one year after starting the pro-life group at her public, high school, Sam Bailey-Loomis, founder and president of Branford Students for Life, has been promised equal treatment.

This February, school administrators told Branford Students for Life that they were not allowed to have an educational table during lunch time and not allowed to pass out recruitment and educational material or host events during the school day. Two weeks ago, Alliance Defending Freedom sent a letter on behalf of Branford Students for Life to Branford Public Schools demanding that the high school administrators reverse these restrictions, respect the First Amendment rights of all students, and allow Students for Life the same opportunities on campus as other student organizations.

“After a grassroots campaign to call attention to the demand letter and under threat of legal action, we are not surprised that Branford Public Schools did the right thing,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America. “Once again, the First Amendment rights of pro-life students have been restored and another school administration has learned that freedom of speech has applied equally, to all students, no matter what their personal beliefs may be. Simply speaking out and educating students on a controversial issue is not enough ground for censorship. In fact, it is issues like abortion that need to be discussed the most on high school campuses. It’s always there in the background as the majority of abortions are committed on women under age 25.”

“Public schools should encourage, not shut down, the free exchange of ideas,” said Legal Counsel Matt Sharp of Alliance Defending Freedom, who represented the group. “The First Amendment protects freedom of speech for all students, regardless of their religious or political beliefs. We commend Branford Public Schools for reversing the restrictions that prevented the students from distributing pro-life literature and clipboarding to their friends and classmates during free time.”

“On behalf of Branford High School Students for Life and on behalf of all abortion abolitionists across the nation, I am honored to say that another victory for the pre-born has been won,” said Sam Bailey-Loomis, founder and president of Branford Students for Life. “While difficult, the stand we have taken will ultimately have a positive impact on our community and on the lives of so many. I want to encourage pro-life activists of all ages to take a stand for life, even if it seems impossible. Nothing is impossible when you stand for truth and justice”

To request interviews with Students for Life of America or Sam about this situation, please contact Kristan Hawkins at kristan@studentsforlife.org.

 

#WhathasRoeDone Tour Update!

1The Roe Tour is continuing to travel across the US to courageous student groups!!!

Our team at Students for Life (SFLA) comes up with a lot of fun and edgy ideas. I still remember sitting around the table at the SFLA office when we started brain storming about creating a display that would allow us to challenge the abortion myths that we need to keep abortion legal because abortion helps women. From that conversation the Roe Display was born. Nine months later, my car stuffed to the brim with the Roe Display, I was on the road heading to test out this display on one of Oregon’s most liberal campuses – Oregon State University.

I have to be honest, I don’t like controversy just for the sake of controversy, and I was a little bit worried about what we might encounter that day. I love dialogue, I love making people think, and I love challenging misconceptions. I was hoping the display would do all of this, but I wasn’t sure because I hadn’t been able to test it myself.

The display itself was intimidating to me. The 13 panels listed all the ways that abortion hurts women. We have panels that talk about how abortion hurts women, we have panels that show the faces of the abortionists and we even have a panel with an autopsy photo of a woman killed by abortion. How would students respond to this display? Would they just think we were being sensationalist? To top it off, the weather report called for an entire week of rain!!!

2

But when you’re a pro-life activist you have to be willing to try new things because you know that you have to make people think about abortion if you’re ever going to change their minds! And I knew one thing for certain, no matter what kind of response we experienced, we were going to be out on the front lines making the campus think and talk about abortion in a way they had never done before. So, we set up the display and started passing out postcards.

Then it happened!!! The first woman stopped by to look at the display and she told us she was post abortive. This was exactly what I had been on the lookout for. How would she respond to the display? Would she yell at us? Would she say we were exaggerating??? I was prepared for everything, except for what happened… She didn’t yell…She stayed and talked.

As she talked, she said things that made me realize the power of the Roe Display. She said she appreciated the fact that we were educating people and that we were asking how abortion affects women. She said she was concerned about the fact that there was no oversight or regulations on abortion in Oregon. She said she was pro-choice, but the she also admitted that she’d had her abortion because there were no other options. She said she didn’t feel there were any resources for her to continue her pregnancy when she got pregnant and she ended by thanking us for drawing attention to that with our display.  Wow!!!

This became a common theme over the four days that the Roe tour traveled across Oregon. I had woman after woman tell me and the other students on our campuses that they themselves had had abortions, or their mom’s had, or their friends had because they hadn’t had support. One of the best things about the display was the chance to offer healing resources to women.

I wasn’t the only one having good dialogue with this display. The student clubs were also experiencing awesome conversations. Watch this video to see the Oregon State Vice President talk about her experience with the display that day:

As the day continued we had other great conversations with many undecided students. Many students thanked me for the information. Students told us that they liked the educational aspect, that they were thankful for new facts no matter what side of the issue they were coming from, and that they thought the display was professional.

The students at Corban University put out a comment box on their campus. You can some of the responses that they got back from the students on their campus:

5 4 3

Check out the latest student response from UCLA:

The best thing about the Roe Display was that in created a bridge to talk to people and to open dialogue. We all know that abortion would still be morally wrong even if it helped women, but we have to attack the lies and myths around abortion and engage people compassionately where they are at. This display allows us to do that. Over and over again, I got the chance to change people’s minds on abortion because I started with addressing how abortion affects women and then transitioned the conversation into asking how abortion hurts the other human being involved, the baby.

So today, I’d like to challenge your group to consider bringing the Roe Display to your campus. Give your selves a chance to learn how to dialogue about abortion and engage people! It’s okay to be intimidated, we can train you. Let your campus know how abortion hurts women. This display is one of the best dialogue tools I have ever used. You have to start the conversation about abortion in order to change minds and save lives!

Saved from abortion!

StudentsSavingLivesBy: Kaitlynn Williams, Campaign Director, 40 Days for Life Tucson and high school student

If you’ve never been to Tucson, you might imagine that it is just as pro-life as the rest of Arizona. However, this is not so true, and the pro-life community there is relatively small. However, when my small group of high school students, XXX, decided to try and lead a 40 Days for Life campaign, our community responded – many of whom had never been involved in the pro-life movement before.

After a few years of Tucson lacking an official 40 Days for Life campaign, my group and I decided to go for it. We wanted to do it last fall, but it did not work. However, it turned out that this spring was actually the earliest we’d be allowed to lead a campaign due to the requirements put out by the 40 Days for Life national team. So despite the projected small participation, we decided to sign up to lead the campaign and begin reaching out to the community via a newfound network of volunteers. So far, we’ve had people praying outside the abortion facility every day – something that hasn’t happened here for quite some time, if ever.

Last week, it became so worth it. On Friday, when a group of volunteers were praying outside of the facility, a young woman pulled up in a car and parked – in the wrong parking lot. You see, there’s two main parking lots connected to the abortion facility in Tucson – one is far beyond our reach and within private property and the other is within feet of our vigil location. However, for that very reason, women are told not to park there. Yet, for some reason, she did. She got out of the car and looked anxious. We asked her if she was there for an abortion and she said yes. She was 16 weeks pregnant, and her boyfriend told her she had to get an abortion. After we informed her that no one could force her to have an abortion, we gave her information about our local pro-life pregnancy resource centers. After gladly reviewing her new found options, the woman declared she would not follow through with her abortion appointment – and so a life was saved.

This one save makes all the difference. If, throughout the entire campaign, nothing else seems to come, this one life makes it all worth it – and all because she chose the wrong parking lot and met some courageous 40 Days for Life prayer warriors.

40 Days for Life isn’t all our group is involved in, however, and since last year, we have established an annual event called the “I Stand with the Voiceless” Awareness Campaign. Planned Parenthood Tucson is not overly active, and in fact pretty much the only event they hold consistently is their annual “I Stand with Planned Parenthood” fundraiser luncheon – this year, their goal was to raise money to help them elect a pro-abortion governor and other pro-abortion legislators in the upcoming elections. So, armed with our pro-life signs and our materials exposing the truth about Planned Parenthood provided to us by Students for Life, we went downtown to the scene of the fundraiser. Surprisingly, the luncheon attendees were not overjoyed to see us, but in between the spitefully worded comments shouted out rolled-down car windows that “Planned Parenthood would be there for us when we needed them” (I’m sure she was assuming I’d one day need someone to lie to me and make profit off of me) and the stern rhetorical questions of, “Why don’t you just shut up?,” we had the opportunity to speak with strangers walking down the busy downtown street.

Some of these strangers were post-abortive women who opened up at the chance to share their story to a loving audience. Some came into the conversation with an open mind and hopes to be persuaded one way or another asking, “Okay, who wants to talk to me and tell me what you’re about?” Another man, however, started the conversation with no effort to hide his preconceived notions. He wanted to know why on earth we’d be against abortion, and what was so wrong with us that we would be led to protest Planned Parenthood? After all, he commented, abortion is just a tiny part of their overall business of helping women. Yet, as the conversation continued, questions were asked, and every issue from abortion to the racist foundations of Planned Parenthood was covered, the change was evident. The levels of mutual respect steadily increased and by the end of the conversation, after providing the man with a booklet about the truth behind Planned Parenthood, the man remarked that if he didn’t have to go on to the next thing in his day, he’d have joined us in our protest.

When you take a stand for life, you never know who you’ll meet or what lives you’ll touch. You simply must take that leap of courage and be there in the middle of all the controversy and stand up for what you know to be true and for what you know to matter. You won’t be able to save every life that is in danger of abortion, and you won’t be able to stop every woman from making a choice she’ll regret for the rest of her life. You won’t be able to convince every person who passes you by as you hold a peaceful pro-life demonstration outside a Planned Parenthood fundraiser. Yet, that one life you do save, that woman you do stop, and that one stranger you do persuade makes all the difference – both now and in the unforeseen future. All we have to do is be there.