By Brenna Lewis, SFLA Staff Writer
Every July, the entire Students for Life of America team comes together from all corners of the country to train and sharpen our skills. We’re a unique team in that we only get to see our co-workers a few times a year, so it’s always a good time when we get together. This year’s gathering took us to Baltimore – but it wasn’t exactly all fun and crab legs. Yep. There were death threats involved.
At SFLA, we’re used to some pretty wild behavior. Our coordinators are shouted at, counter-protested, and a whole manner of other abuses every semester during our tour displays and other activism events. Ask any SFLA employee, “What’s the craziest thing that’s happened to you?” and you’re pretty much guaranteed to get your mind blown. We aren’t exaggerating when we say the other side is getting desperate; they show it every day.
This year, we are blessed with a group of new regional coordinators who have already been an incredible addition to our team. With so many fresh faces, it seemed only natural to go out and do some pro-life outreach on the pier in the Inner Harbor (Effective Education, anyone?). Five new team members took to the pier armed with our pro-life postcards and a sign that read, “When do equal rights begin?”
Overall, many passersby were either already pro-life or at least willing to have a civil conversation about the issue. But things changed a bit when a lone man approached the table. Michele Hendrickson, Eastern Regional Director, shares:
“One man kept walking back and forth, hovering around our display. Once he realized what we were talking about, he approached our Indiana Regional Coordinator saying, “You guys shouldn’t be here.” When she asked, “What do you mean?” He told her, “You shouldn’t be talking about this sort of thing, it causes too many problems. If you don’t leave, I’ll come back and murder you!” We stayed out talking to dozens of people for hours, and he continued to walk back and forth and then sit on a bench nearby to watch.”
It’s always nice to hear from the pro-woman folks who can’t stand when we do pro-life activism. I mean, what’s more pro-woman than growling death threats… at a woman?
Apart from that unnerving encounter, the outreach session was really encouraging. Overwhelmingly, it was young people who were pro-life already or most receptive to the message and older people who were the staunchest pro-abortion advocates. Young people are seeing the truth and realizing what abortion has done to women and their families. They know when equal rights begin better than generations past. The tide is turning is not just a clever saying; it’s a reality.