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Debunking the Myths about Pro-Lifers

— Posted by Eric Scheidler (April 26, 2006 at 1:05 pm)

04-07-04 ProtestTake a look at the picture at right. It’s from a protest on April 7, 2004 at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and it says a lot about the myths—and realities—about who pro-lifers really are. That’s a topic I want to take up in some detail over the coming weeks.

In this photo you see a pro-abortion counter-protestor holding a sign that reads, Racist, Sexist, Anti-gay, Born again BIGOTS GO AWAY, a favorite slogan among of the pro-abortion activists. To his left stands Joe Scheidler, my father and the founder of the Pro-Life Action League, who has just been hit in the face with a blast of black dye. He required medical attention and his left eye troubles him to this day. His pro-abortion attacker was never apprehended.

The irony, of course, is that it is we pro-lifers who are so often accused of violence. But, as Brian Clowes of Human Life International has amply documented, pro-lifers are far more likely to be the victims of violence than the perpetrators. On the same day this photograph was taken, two women were assaulted by an pro-abort activist, who is now under a court-imposed restraining order. Last year’s Face the Truth Tour was marked by several acts of pro-abortion violence, which led to convictions in court.

Racist, Sexist, Anti-Gay, Born-Again Bigots?

Let’s return to that protest sign. We are being called racist and sexist. Yet on that day our group actually exhibited greater racial diversity than the pro-abortion group, and while a great majority of their group was male, among the pro-lifers women were in a slight majority. One member of our group, a black woman named Lydia, found it particulalry comical to be called racists and sexist!

We are also being called born again bigots. Let’s dispose of “bigots” first. A bigot is “one who is strongly partial to one’s own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ” (dictionary.com). I’ve already mentioned just a few of the acts of intolerance we were exposed to during the April 7 protest. And I think we’ve seen pretty amply in the comments of this blog which direction the intolerance really goes.

Now, as to “born again.” The vast majority of pro-life activists are Catholic. There are plenty of exceptions of course, but at this particular protest, all but one of two of the pro-lifers were Catholics, not “Born Again Christians”—at least not as this term is usually understood. As Catholics, we believe that we are born again through Baptism, but I doubt that protestor in this photo had that in mind. I suppose “born again bigots,” with the alliteration on the “B” has more punch than “Catholic bigots.” (At other times the pro-abortion protestors seem to think, contrarily, that we are all Catholics, when they chant, “Keep your Rosaries off my ovaries”—prefering the rhyme over the reality.)

The only statement even remotely accurate on this sign is anti-gay—and even that’s pretty remote. Yes, we belive homosexual acts are immoral, and we oppose so-called gay marriage, as well as that propaganda and indoctrination attempting to normalize homosexual relations. But we aren’t “against” homosexuals—I don’t even know what it would mean to be “anti” a group of people.

Series Will Reveal the Truth about Pro-Lifers

If these and other myths about pro-lifers were restricted just to the most radical elements of the pro-abortion movement, like those we encountered back on April 7, 2004, it wouldn’t be worthwhile to debunk any of those myths. The less the pro-aborts—and by that term I refer specifically to the pro-abortion activists—really understand us, their opponents, the better; their ignorance renders them feckless.

But many of these myths about pro-lifers and the pro-life movement are held by the less radicalized supporters of legal abortion and even by many who oppose abortion. Over the coming weeks I plan to address some of the most common myths about pro-lifers one-by-one. These myths include:

  • Pro-lifers are filled with hate. (We’ve seen that claim on this blog haven’t we?)
  • Pro-lifers care only about fetuses, not “born people.”
  • Pro-lifers base all their arguments on religion.
  • Pro-lifers are trying to impose their beliefs on others.
  • Pro-lifers are mostly men, so abortion doesn’t affect them.
  • Pro-lifers have no idea what women with unplanned pregnancies go through.
  • If Pro-lifers really wanted to stop abortion, they’d do X.

A final comment on that silly sign from the April 7, 2004 protest. The most misguided words of all on that sign are GO AWAY. That we will never do. We’re here to stay. I invite you to tune into this series of articles on the myths about pro-lifers and learn who we really are.

This entry is filed under Culture Wars, Myths Series, The Front Lines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

37 Comments on “Debunking the Myths about Pro-Lifers”

Please Note: Visitor comments do not necessarily reflect the views of Generations for Life or our parent organization, the Pro-Life Action League.

  1. rosie says:

    Well written, My best friend is a democrat and pro-life. The whole
    “you’re a bigot” thing is funny, because there are gays who are also pro-life all you have to do is look up Gays for Life. As for looking to religion to base our arguments on, well, God had moses write the commandments down for a reason. While people are so worried about “my body” I personally worry about “my soul”.

    Comment posted April 26th, 2006 at 1:27 pm
  2. Phil says:

    Excellent post!

    Comment posted April 26th, 2006 at 1:40 pm
  3. tim says:

    Great list. Here’s another myth related to those you’ve listed:

    How dare you complain about abortion! You haven’t provided socialized health care, solved child poverty, stopped genocide in Darfur, eliminated global warming, ended discrimination, taken a stand against the war in Iraq, etc.

    The charge of hypocrisy is the most common logical fallacy used to attack on the pro-life position on child killing (in the womb).

    Comment posted April 26th, 2006 at 2:49 pm
  4. Lauren says:

    Dang it you guys were at UIC, why didnt you letme know, I would’ve been there! I live like 2 blocks away!

    Comment posted April 27th, 2006 at 11:49 am
  5. Lauren says:

    you are anti-gay thought arent you?

    How dare you complain about abortion! You haven’t provided socialized health care, solved child poverty, stopped genocide in Darfur, eliminated global warming, ended discrimination, taken a stand against the war in Iraq, etc.

    Have yOU?

    Comment posted April 27th, 2006 at 11:50 am
  6. Lauren says:

    Pro-lifers are trying to impose their beliefs on others.

    How dont they?

    Comment posted April 27th, 2006 at 11:51 am
  7. Eric says:

    Sorry, Lauen, I’m not going to bite. You’ll have to wait for the next installment in the series like everyone else.

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 11:24 am
  8. Annie says:

    I’ll never forget that day at UIC. The pro-aborts were verbally attacking a little girl who was out there peacefully protesting with her mother. They were harassing her and making fun of her mother. It was just awful. I’m pleased to say that I comforted her and helped her understand that the things they were saying were just lies and that they too needed prayers.

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 12:55 pm
  9. Resident curmudgeon says:

    The pro-aborts were verbally attacking a little girl who was out there peacefully protesting with her mother.

    They shouldn’t have attacked a little girl. They should’ve done what I did to the little girls. Bring a puppy which I did, and which they were much more interested in in the actual protest. They didnt want to be out there… … Look into their eyes with tears and let them know that what their parents were doing is not always right. And when they get older to always remember it is OK to disagree with their parents. it’s wrong to bring children to these events. They can’t possibly grapple the complex issues at hand. I wouldn’t bring my child to one of these events either. It’s wrong. Using children to shield yourself from criticism is something that is shameful.

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 2:44 pm
  10. Resident curmudgeon says:

    Yes annie, pro-aborts. That sort of lanuage proves to me what you really are. A self-loathing moron. How’s this…. Why not just relinquish all of your rights, woman. Go back to the 15th century and be subservient to your husband.. I can’t believe you even have access to a computer! Women should know their place! (men telling them what to do!)

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 2:45 pm
  11. rosie says:

    Annie,
    My sister in-law took her little brother sidewalk counseling when he was about 10 and one of the abortionists came to the door and screamed F*** you! right at him. There’s no doubt that she was singling him out because he was a kid. However, he being the kind of kid he is just looked at his sister and said,”man they’re mean”. I think it’s important for kids to be there and see exactly the kind of people they’re dealing with, I can’t wait until the teens of today can vote. I also think more men are becoming pro-life as the years go on.

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 5:21 pm
  12. Annie says:

    Rosie,

    Thanks for your comments. It’s terrible how mean people can be to children, but not surprising if they accept abortion.

    Thankfully, kids are stronger than we think. I leave it up to the parents to decide if their kids should be out there. Most pro-life parents are  conscientious and are able to discern whether or not their children can or should be able to participate in pro-life activities.

    As a child I attended plenty of protests and now my nieces and nephews are out there when their parents feel it is appropriate.

    The truth is that abortion is openly accept in this country. Children will eventually learn this truth. What better person to educate them about it than their parents.

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 5:35 pm
  13. rosie says:

    Lauren,
    I’m confused. Did you actually go to a pro-life protest and tell those children that what their parents were doing was wrong?

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 5:46 pm
  14. joe says:

    Lauren writes, “… Look into their eyes with tears and let them know that what their parents were doing is not always right. And when they get older to always remember it is OK to disagree with their parents.”

    If it is OK to disagree with your parents, then who are you supposed to agree with? Society? Hollywood? Who has the answers Lauren, your precious Planned Parentood? Or the State? Who trumps parents when it comes to something as imporant as abortion? You are being manipulated and you don’t even realize it.
    The question you should ponder Lauren is, “Who is manipulating you?”

    Joe

    Comment posted May 1st, 2006 at 7:26 pm
  15. Lauren says:

    Lauren,
    I’m confused. Did you actually go to a pro-life protest and tell those children that what their parents were doing was wrong?

    You betcha :)

    Comment posted May 2nd, 2006 at 3:49 pm
  16. Lauren says:

    Actually wait, I didnt tell them that what their parent was doing was wrong. I brought my pug puppy that they could play with.. They did.. I thought someone should be kind to them. One kid was reading a Star Wars Book.. Here if you want to read about it read my blog post… I told them that your parents are not always right (somethign I personally have experienced).. My dad was gung ho about going into Iraq and I opposed him. Now we’re on the same page thankfully, but it’s important for children to know that on political and otherbeliefs, it is ok and important to know they can disagree with their parents. I was just instilling in them the right to think for themselves. I dont know, maybe the young girls will remember it. Maybe not.

    http://www.campusprogress.org/page/community/post/laurenpatrizi/C3MS
    Feel free to comment on it as well

    Comment posted May 2nd, 2006 at 3:52 pm
  17. Lauren says:

    The question you should ponder Lauren is, “Who is manipulating you?”

    My parents aren’t necessarily pro-choice. I’m notbeing manipulated. Often I disagree with my parents.. There are too many people of my generation who say, “well my dad thinks, or my mom thinks”… Screw that. Think for yourself. Find your own moral compass. Parents who enforce their beliefs on their children create one of the following things. A. Extremists who blindly follow B. Apathetic people who blindly follow C. People who agree fundamentally with their parents after having thought it out themselves D. People who disagree fundamentally with their parents after having thought it out themselves. C or D are theonly good things that happen.

    People on this blog…. What would you do if I was your child? Disown me? What if I were gay?

    Comment posted May 2nd, 2006 at 3:55 pm
  18. Lauren says:

    If it is OK to disagree with your parents, then who are you supposed to agree with? Society? Hollywood?

    Btw, I don’t take my cues from society or hollywood. I take my cues from myself thank you very much.

    Comment posted May 2nd, 2006 at 3:56 pm
  19. Lauren says:

    If it is OK to disagree with your parents, then who are you supposed to agree with? Society? Hollywood?

    Btw, I don’t take my cues from society or hollywood. I take my cues from myself thank you very much. ANd just because your views dont necessarily correspond with society and/or Hollywood as you call it, doesnt mean you’re right.

    Comment posted May 2nd, 2006 at 3:56 pm
  20. Lauren says:

    I love how all you cowards stop answering me after I make some good points you ccan’t answer.. not to mention when you do answer you ignore the crucial points I make or only mention some linguistic convenience you tear to pick apart.. AHA!

    Comment posted May 7th, 2006 at 8:58 pm
  21. Eric says:

    Lauren writes: “I love how all you cowards stop answering me after I make some good points you can’t answer.”

    Please, Lauren. This thread is now nearly two weeks old. It’s way down the page now. People have moved on to other discussions.

    But if it makes you feel better to believe that you’ve trounced your opponents with impregnable arguments—rather than bored them with the same old predictable non sequiturs and personal attacks—then you go on believing that.

    Comment posted May 8th, 2006 at 10:27 am
  22. Lauren says:

    Eric… way to ignore again some points I made.. but if you want to dismiss them in that way it works too… If i didnt use pejorative language no one would answer me.

    Comment posted May 8th, 2006 at 11:22 am
  23. Eric says:

    Lauren writes: “If I didn’t use pejorative language no one would answer me.”

    I guess we’d have to see you behave civilly to test that hypothesis, but you may be right that obnoxious behavior elicits a response&madash;at least for a while. But eventually people get tired of it.

    Comment posted May 9th, 2006 at 3:07 pm
  24. Margie says:

    When I went out to Planned Parenthood’s surgical center last Friday, the proabort deathscorts were telling the clients that we were planning on punching them in the face. We found this out when one client left and told my friend, “I know you are planning to hit me in the face!” What a shock to us! Since we are peaceful Christians, the opposition seeks to scare the clients out of talking to us by lying about our intentions towards them!

    When we fail to live up to the lies about prolifers, the Planned Parenthood crowd creates fear in the hearts of their own clients by planting the idea in their minds that we are not to be trusted and are dangerous and violent. No wonder they refuse to speak to us! Let us debunk these myths about prolifers. The last thing in the world we would do would be to harm anyone!

    Comment posted May 15th, 2006 at 4:50 pm
  25. Teresa says:

    Thank you, Eric, for debunking these myths, once and for all. I am not anti-gay, sexist, or racist. I am pro-life, anti-war, anti-violence, anti-pornography, pro-woman & pro-family. I’m proud to be a stay-at-home mom. I am also proud to raise my daughter to respect her body, her life, and the future lives, if any, of our future family members. Celebrate motherhood:)

    Comment posted May 15th, 2006 at 6:49 pm
  26. Pat Morris says:

    Hi Eric, I thank God for you and your parents. I was out with them many times before moving to California.

    This is my first time looking at this site and I must say that Lauren’s comments became very wearisome. If she had been with some of the women (and men) who contacted WEBA-Illinois for about 18 years, she would not be so harsh. Maybe she needs to contact someone for peer counseling?

    I’m doing a poor job of quoting, but here goes, “Me thinks thou protestest a little too loudly.” If and when you need help Lauren, it will be the “pro-lifers” who will care.

    God bless you all and keep up the good work!

    Comment posted May 15th, 2006 at 8:20 pm
  27. Lauren says:

    “We found this out when one client left and told my friend, ‘I know you are planning to hit me in the face!’”

    hahahahhaahha that doesnt even make sense.. someone is lying in this equation… im not going to speculate who.. punching in the face is hilarious.

    Oh they will care enough to take your rights away Ms. Pat!

    Comment posted May 16th, 2006 at 2:10 am
  28. mary kay hastings says:

    My dear sweet Lauren,

    Why are you so angry? What has the world done to you that you want to lash out at everyone. You just prove the point that everyone keeps trying to make. Pro-lifers are NOT the angry ones. Pro-aborters are.

    No body here is trying to pick a fight. Remember, You sought out OUR website.

    Of course you can disagree with your parents. For instance, if your parents are pro choice, feel free to disagree and be pro-life!

    I will pray for you, that you might find some peace in your soul,
    and I will as the 40 million aborted babies to pray for you too.

    As Jesus said, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”..

    It’s a shame that all the babies who have died at the clinics today, will not have a chance to see your pug…or a butterfly, or a redbud or a kangaroo. Your pug lives on, while children die. Sound a little confused to you?

    If you are able to love you little dog, then there must be hope…you’re heart may not be completely frozen. Perhaps there is still a chance that you can find your way home…

    God Bless You,

    Mary Kay

    Comment posted May 16th, 2006 at 7:55 am
  29. dennis brendant says:

    i personally want to say that well done but we all need to love eachother, more i think that is went you all can win the battle outside please cos am out to win all prolifers out there.

    dennis brendant
    +2348023582047

    Comment posted May 16th, 2006 at 11:04 am
  30. Lauren says:

    As Jesus said, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”..

    I try to listen him.. and in my heart I try my hardest to learn to forgive you Mary Kay.

    Comment posted May 16th, 2006 at 6:06 pm
  31. mary kay hastings says:

    great comeback lauren.
    well thought out.
    mk

    Comment posted May 16th, 2006 at 7:08 pm
  32. mary kay hastings says:

    By the way, all of us bigoted, hypocritical, egotistical, bullying christians….usually try to capitalize the “H” in Him when referring to God.

    mk

    Comment posted May 17th, 2006 at 3:37 pm
  33. Ally says:

    “Yet on that day our group actually exhibited greater racial diversity than the pro-abortion group, and while a great majority of their group was male, among the pro-lifers women were in a slight majority. One member of our group, a black woman named Lydia, found it particulalry comical to be called racists and sexist!”

    Lydia was the only black woman there. You’re lying.

    Comment posted May 17th, 2006 at 4:38 pm
  34. Eric says:

    Ally says: “Lydia was the only black woman there. You’re lying.”

    Uh . . . How many black women did I say were there? I said our group was more racially diverse than the pro-abort group, which it was.

    Interesting that you collapse “racially diverse” down into “black woman.” Not sure what that’s about.

    Comment posted May 18th, 2006 at 8:55 am
  35. Ally says:

    Because she was the only person of color there, at least from PLAL (at that stop). The pro choice side had many more women of color, and people in general. Including me.

    Comment posted May 23rd, 2006 at 11:48 am
  36. Lucy says:

    If it is OK to disagree with your parents, then who are you supposed to agree with? Society? Hollywood? Who has the answers Lauren, your precious Planned Parentood? Or the State? Who trumps parents when it comes to something as imporant as abortion? You are being manipulated and you don’t even realize it.
    The question you should ponder Lauren is, “Who is manipulating you?”

    Joe

    Of course, always agree with parents. Never grow, change, think for yourself. Parents are human as well, they do sometimes get it wrong. Or should the abused children in the world accept that as long as it comes from their parents it is deserved?

    Comment posted June 3rd, 2006 at 10:23 am
  37. Jannaea says:

    I’m not here to start a fight. Promise I will behave. However I really just don’t buy pro-lifers arguments. As a caseworker I see every day the consequences of unplanned pregnancies and unwanted children. And often its a continuous cycle. And every time I look(correct me if I’m wrong please) its always people of your group talking about the sanctity of life but favor cutting essential social programs that provide things such as birth control, adequate housing, schooling etc. Adoption would be all nice and good if there were available families however. In my state alone there are scores of black children without homes and very few families to adopt them. Pro-choice is not responsible for killing anybody counseling abortion alternatives. Doctors and nurses have been murdered in the name of pro-life. Lastly I have to ask this, if the majority of women getting the abortions were blacks and other minorities would the pro-life movement be as loud as it is?

    Comment posted October 8th, 2006 at 4:23 pm

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