By Bethany Janzen, Rocky Mountain Regional Coordinator for Students for Life of America
While Congress and D.C. is in a raucous, students on campus aren’t being quiet either. Last week, Dr. Anthony Levatino’s presentations at a public university and med school in Colorado sparked controversy and conversation.
Dr. Levatino is a former abortionist who committed around 1,200 abortions – including some past 20 weeks – and had a change of heart. His story is captivating and compelling, which he shared with two schools of higher education last week.
At the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical School (CU Anschutz), 70 people attended Dr. Levatino’s lunch presentation “From Pro-Choice to Pro-Life.” In the evening, about 100-120 turned out to hear him address is “Is Abortion Women’s Healthcare?” at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder).
Leading up to the CU Boulder event, many of the posters which the Students for Life group on campus put up advertising the event were taken down. Also, some of their chalking was washed off, or defaced.
During the Q & A time at CU Boulder, one passionate African American student asked about how Dr. Levatino, as a white male, had the right to tell a woman what to do when he wasn’t fighting to stop Black Lives Matter, children dying in Syria, etc. His response? We can’t solve every crisis, but we can address a few important ones. It is sexist to say that just because I’m a male I can’t advocate for the lives of sons and daughters.
There were some other hostile questions as well, which Dr. Levatino answered with compassion, and though no protestors showed up, security stood by at both events.
At CU Anschutz, one of the three core leaders of the CU Anschutz Pro-Choice group and a leader in the Colorado Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice asked some questions about contraception and such from a pro-choice mindset. But afterwards she came up and talked to me.
We both realized that we had testified the day before on opposite sides of the same bill in the Colorado Senate Committee. She was kind and agreed that we needed to support pregnant and parenting students and was especially passionate about the need for lactation rooms on campus. It was great to find that common ground together.
She said that she thought it was good to consider other perspectives and so that’s why she wanted to attend Dr. Levatino’s presentation. She exchanged contact information with the president of the new CU Anschutz SFL group and he plans to get in touch with her.
At both events I had baby socks for the #Sockit2PP campaign that people could pin and then send the other one to Congress in efforts to defund Planned Parenthood. Lots of people participated!! 😊