In last month’s issue of the Manitoban, a news article discussed the Womyn’s Centre protest of the New Abortion Caravan. I am writing this article to explain why I feel the Caravan is important.
The images on the trucks are bloody, disturbing, and seemingly unreal. An initial reaction to seeing these images might be surprise, remorse, anger, or the pouring of chocolate milk on people who hold these signs, as happened just recently to pro-life activists in Thunder Bay. Whatever would induce such responses?
Perhaps it is the reality of it all; there is no denying the images. I think that pouring chocolate milk on a pro-life activist is an understandable reaction for someone whose wrongdoing has been exposed in front of them. I think it is a natural human response to feel bad about ending a life.
So what can be done about it? Instead of shooting the messenger, why not address what seems to me to be the cause of the bad feelings – the abortion that killed this person’s child? Healing resources such as the Silent No More Awareness Campaign and Rachel’s Vineyard are available to help women understand the reasons for the feelings of guilt they may feel, and show them how they can address them. I think that a more fruitful course of action would be to resolve to make better choices in the future as well as attempt to help others avoid making what I see as a tragic mistake.
I feel that women deserve better than abortion, despite what some abortion advisors may say. Abortions can result in physical complications for women, but what are more detrimental and harder to heal are the psychological consequences. I feel that women in a crisis pregnancy must be offered compassionate, life affirming options, not options that end life. No words are adequate to describe the injury done to the one whose life is taken away; this is why the photographs are needed. I think that women deserve better, as do their unborn children.
It might seem disrespectful or extreme to use these images of children’s corpses to send a message, but it is through these signs, postcards, and trucks that the future brothers and sisters of these children are saved. The lives of their mothers would be improved instead of scarred, for whether or not they decide to keep and raise the child, they can have peace knowing that they chose life, not death, as shown in those devastating photographs.
In my opinion, these images reveal to those who have survived that there is a need to defend the rights of those who are most vulnerable, those who cannot speak for themselves and have been denied the right to live. Women in crisis pregnancies are vulnerable as well; however, violent measures should not be taken to help vulnerable people. I do not think that we should be promoting choices that can have the physical and psychological consequences of abortion. Women deserve the best, and abortion is not the best the world has to offer.
Agnus Mariae Lucas is a first year student in the Faculty of Education