We Asked, You Answered: What Pro-Life Things Would You Do With A Lottery Jackpot?

With both the Powerball and Mega Millions jackpots at unusual highs ($730 million and $850 million, respectively, as of this writing), we wanted to know: what kind of pro-life work would you do if you won the lottery? Here are a few of your ideas.

Reming M.—Start a secular pregnancy center and/or shelter for families. Then throw money at all the whole life/secular/pro-life organizations I like. I’d be like Oprah, “you get a million dollars, you get a million dollars, everyone gets a million dollars!”

Ginnie P.—I already am making plans and preparations for a mobile midwifery clinic. I’d have a whole clinic van fleet staffed!

Samantha T.—Start a foundation to help with basic living expenses for single mothers so they don’t have to stay with abusers or family members who may try to force them to abort or to just help them get on their feet. And also fund scholarships so they can go to college or trade school.

Herb G.—Create and fund a pregnant person’s bail fund. 

Kristin M.—I’ve thought about this a lot. I would buy myself a house, give myself a salary to hold me for the rest of my life and put that away in savings, and then literally spend the rest on the non-stereotypical pro-life non-profit organizations such as Secular Pro-Life while seeing if I can volunteer more in my free time too.

$100 bills

Adam P.—I would buy all the billboard space in and around the top 30 most populous cities in America for a year and advertise for local pregnancy centers and pro-life groups, or just general pro-life messages.

Sophie T.—Pay for a chain of pro-life, nonreligious maternity homes and shelters for women and children fleeing domestic violence. Fund pro-life/CLE orgs that I like. I’d also like to pay for a storytelling project for women who were coerced into abortions, because I feel like it happens more frequently than most people think, with factors like financial support and emotional manipulation. I’d also like to do what Let Them Live does: meet the immediate physical or financial needs of pregnant women so the pressure eases.
Gabriella B.—I would create a company focusing specifically on changing the culture. It would produce movies, TV shows, documentaries, music, publish novels, make clothes, make food, and even commission art work that promoted the pro-life message in some way.
And finally, in a case of great minds thinking alike…

Jessica B.—I would start an alternative to Planned Parenthood that offers all the things except abortion; would try to partner with existing places that are close to the same if possible to lower overhead.

Laura P.—Start Unplanned Parenthood ® where we do everything that PP does (and more) sans abortion. I mean, UP does sound a lot better than PP anyway.

It’s clear that an amazing amount of good would come from a pro-life winner. Best of luck!

P.S.—Secular Pro-Life does not take a position on the morality or wisdom of state-run lotteries; we were just being topical. If you struggle with compulsive gambling, we encourage you to seek help.

P.P.S.—We asked a similar question in October 2018, when the jackpot was over a billion dollars. Our social media following has grown a lot in the past two years! Here’s what folks had to say back then

We Asked, You Answered: Learning from Defeat

The Colorado state capitol building

Sadly, Colorado’s Proposition 115—which would have finally prohibited medically unnecessary late-term abortions (five months or later) in the state—did not pass. Although Election Day did have some bright spots, like the passage of Louisiana’s Love Life Amendment and the election of numerous pro-life women to Congress, the inability to pass even the barest protection for babies in the Centennial State is extremely discouraging. We wrote on Facebook:

For those of you who live in Colorado, give us your thoughts on why Prop 115 failed and what pro-lifers should do for the next round to have more success. This defeat is very frustrating and sad, but we are in this work for life, so let’s review and prepare for the next fight.
Here are a few of the many responses, and it didn’t take long for a theme to emerge:
Hope R.: I saw no ads in support of prop 115 that I can recall. And the ads against it were full of misinformation. I saw several ads claiming “it’s an intentionally confusing proposition” and so called doctors claiming “it will restrict my ability to provide care to save the mother’s life.” Lies were shoved in our faces and very little was said about the truth. 

Amy B.: Straight up there was NO money spent on it! I only saw two yard signs, no TV ads, no print ads. Nothing. People decided they’d rather throw money at candidates (some of whom are objectively terrible people) than at making actual substantive progress on abortion restrictions. I think if I’d heard actual facts from the pro-life side of the ballot issue it might have been different but all I heard was straight up crickets! Deafening silence from the ballot measure supporters. (And I run in pro-life circles and live in a conservative area of the state, so if I heard/saw nothing you can guess that most others got even less).

Keri K.: Big abortion money, completely lied on commercials about the bill, said Yes on 115 would not help those with medical issues, rape, ban all abortions essentially. Yes on 115 did not have any TV presences to combat this messaging
Hope R.: I saw no ads in support of prop 115 that I can recall. And the ads against it were full of misinformation. I saw several ads claiming “it’s an intentionally confusing proposition” and so called doctors claiming “it will restrict my ability to provide care to save the mother’s life.” Lies were shoved in our faces and very little was said about the truth.
Julie M.: I only just moved to CO, but from NY. (Please don’t hate on me I married into the state, lol.) I wasn’t following any polls but expected it to fail and was surprised at how well it did. I saw only ads against it, and they got “better” (more persuasive) with time, whereas I only heard of vote yes through word of mouth and a sign waver or two. The pro-life movement here needs to reach beyond its solid base and explain the brutality so that in a state getting darker blue, people still vote their conscience and not their party on abortion. Public opinion is on our side, but pro-life strategy needs a lot of work.
Ellen C.: Honestly, there wasn’t a good ground game past getting it on the ballot (and even that was shaky), and the abortion lobby was FLOODING the field with their propaganda.
Jesse B.: No one is going to want to hear this, but here goes nothing. Prop 115 failed, because people are tired of pro-lifers actually just being pro-birth. You want prop 115 to pass (which I voted yes on, so calm yourselves), but many of you stay on one side of the aisle for all other issues. Maybe if we could show people that we care about babies inside the womb, outside the womb, the babies who need WIC, and the babies who grow up to need college assistance by no fault of their own, our voices would be louder. Try voting away from party lines, and I guarantee you will bring many more people to the table to hear you out on abortion.

Sarah N.: Pro aborts lie through their teeth to convince people that these laws will criminalize miscarriage. Also Colorado has had several personhood amendments that were poorly written and failed miserably. So the left just ties these ballot initiatives together with the personhood. They say stuff like how many times do we have to vote this down. We will reject this again. The uniformed voter is easily swayed by this nonsense. On top of that most people have no idea what abortion is much less late term abortion.
Jay G.: I don’t know that it was made clear that Colorado is an outlier here. We’re one of a small handful of states that permit abortions so late. And comparing to other world democracies, most European countries permit most early abortions and prohibit most late abortions. I think too many people assumed “any restriction on abortion is a radical proposal,” without comparing to other standards.
Megan H.: People need to be educated on the fact that no medical condition is treated by abortion. Most people I’ve talked to about it, including my pre-med niece who lives in Boulder, are under the impression that late term abortion is used as treatment for medical conditions.
Samantha L.: A lot of people seem to think the majority of these abortions are fetal anomalies. That’s what I heard in my circles. We need to address that piece. Did I also see that the opposition completely over spent us?
[Photo credit: Wikipedia image of Colorado State Capitol, Creative Commons license]
 

We Asked, You Answered: Navigating Abortion Discussions in the Workplace

We posed this scenario to our Facebook followers:

Scene: You’re at work. Coworker A starts casually repeating pro-choice talking points to Coworker B, clearly in earshot of you and several other coworkers. Coworker B agrees politely, though doesn’t seem particularly invested in the conversation. They commiserate on their general dislike of pro-lifers and their perceptions of the weaknesses in pro-life arguments. None of the other coworkers participate. How, if it all, do you respond? And why would you respond the way you do?

Here are a few of our favorite responses.

Michael W.: “Would you be surprised to learn I’m pro-life?” They usually are. Then they tell you about their misconceptions of pro-lifers (how they’re “not like you”) and you can politely shoot them down one by one.

Patty J.: I am the only pro-lifer at my workplace. Some co-workers are more open-minded than others. This issue (and many other leftist political issues) come up a lot. I pick and choose my battles and consider how these battles will impact the work environment. Luckily I am respected professionally so my differing views don’t lead to harassment.

Sophie T.: I’ve never existed in the same universe as shy, so I’d approach them and out myself as pro-life. I’d then try to engage them, but especially Coworker B, in conversation about what being pro-life really means to me and debunk some of the stereotypes. It’s hard to hate and fear people if you actually know them, if they’re names, faces, and personalities instead of just an ideology. Just like the pro-choicers always say you probably know someone who has had an abortion, everyone knows somebody who’s pro-life.

Nat K.: I’ve been in these shoes. I simply said “I believe life begins at conception and the government’s primary job is to protect life. In order to change my mind, you have to draw a hard line between conception and death where life actually begins.” Nobody ever has.

Sarah F.: This actually happened once, in a setting where getting into a big argument would have been a huge problem. I didn’t say anything because I was afraid that once I got started I would actually start screaming at them (I was pregnant at the time, and they knew it).

No Termination Without Representation: I would close my eyes and meditate till I felt ready for a calm and powerful response.

Melissa M.: Depends greatly on the dynamics and personalities involved in the scenario. A lot of the time I hear people talking about abortion in public, they’re feeling troll-y and angling for a spat. Not a great use of time and energy to chase that rabbit.

Rachel S.: “I’m pro-life!” Most are too passive to actually take up debate with you, especially at work. If they do, the easiest way to address any untrue/feeble opinions about a group of people is to say, “but I fit under that ideology, and I don’t think that. This is what I, and friends like me actually think,” and continue from there.

Nicole C.: I’d probably point out that this kind of conversation is NOT work appropriate. I’d mention that I am pro-life and would gladly have a conversation OUTSIDE work sometime if they wanna go over pro-life arguments but NOT at work.

Lauren M.: Sometimes I don’t outright speak against, I’ll engage in a conversation based on common ground issues, or I’ll say I consider myself a “pro-life feminist”, or something along those lines, which often brings on intrigue rather than disdain. It kinda depends on the vibe, however I will almost always respond in some way and ultimately bring it back to women deserve the world to wholly embrace our biology rather than convince us to follow male biological standards ingrained in society. Also, focusing on contraception is a big common ground!

Nicole P.: I’d let it slip at some point that I volunteer at a pregnancy center while at work one day. Then I’d mention all the amazing pro life things the center does.

[Photo credit: Brooke Cagle on Unsplash]

We Asked, You Answered: Practical Ways to Support Foster and Adoptive Families

Silhouette of a family at sunset

We asked our Facebook followers: “What are the best ways people can support foster or adoptive families? If you have experience in these areas let us know what you think.” Here are few of our favorite responses. 

Karah E.: As someone who was both adopted and placed a baby for adoption I would beg people to refrain from using the word “real” in front of the word “parent.” Biological/birth parents are no more or less “real” than adoptive/forever parents.

Bekah F.: Get certified/approved with your county’s foster system to provide respite care for the occasional nights/weekends! In so many states, foster parents can’t just hire a babysitter or leave the kids with family for a break and it is so, so needed.

Aimee J.: When we adopted a baby a friend of ours donated her extra breast milk. It was so sweet and helpful! People also brought us meals and have offered to clean and babysit.

Pamela M.: In addition to all the suggestions of helping/supporting/loving on foster and adoptive parents let’s not forget the child welfare workers and the agencies that serve these children and families. Ask what they need: toys for visitation rooms, new socks and underwear for kids who enter care with very little to nothing, handmade blankets/quilts and/or a new stuffed animal to be given to children when they come into care, a “car” kit for kids to busy with during transportation to and from parental visits (books, coloring books, crayons, card games, etc.). Ask an agency if you could treat their staff by providing a lunch once a month or quarter, or at the holidays, etc.

Sarah C.: I haven’t read all the comments because . . . wow! There are a ton. But for me, the biggest thing is this: believe the parents when they say how hard it is and don’t give them trite parenting advice. Second to this: educate yourself about attachment disorders.

Heather B.: Be intentional (positive) with your words, and know proper terminology. Support fundraisers by sharing, donating, etc., or at the very least by NOT discouraging it. Bringing a child into a home is stressful, help with meals and cleaning is greatly appreciated. Don’t expect visiting time with the parent (although they may want you to stay). With newborn adoptions, it’s recommended that only the parents tend to baby, so help with EVERYTHING else is preferred.

Crystal K.: Don’t be afraid of our kids! Have your kids be friends with ours and offer to babysit.

Beth F.: Stop treating [adoption] like it is only for people who can’t get pregnant on their own. Acknowledge that any adoption story involves some degree of loss, but stop treating like a tragedy to be avoided. Celebrate families who choose adoption and recognize it as a valid choice regardless of fertility status.

Pamela M.: Another really simple thing that I didn’t see mentioned in a quick glance is for families to diversify their own children’s bookshelves with stories that include foster care and/or adoption themes. Normalizing the concepts foster care and adoption through children’s stories featuring children and even animals can help your children understand that families can be made in lots of different ways and that some families are for now and others are forever.

Becky M.: All of these suggestions are great. Respite care, help with meals and cleaning, use positive adoption language, offer to take any other/older kids out for a bit so mom and dad can have more one-on-one time with the new one(s). Also, give us grace. Some of our kids come with trauma based behaviors, so please don’t judge how we parent.

[Photo credit: Jude Beck on Unsplash]

We Asked, You Answered: Systemic Factors Driving Abortion

Woman holds a sign that reads "Abortion is a flesh tax on the poor"

We recently posted on the Secular Pro-Life facebook page: 

An author working on a book about political engagement asked: “Conservatives I speak with often blame the federal government for a lot of social problems, while liberals tend to blame capitalism. Viewing the issue of abortion from a systemic standpoint, what are the institutional sources of this problem?”

After telling him that volumes could be written on that question and giving him an academic lead, I answered: “Blaming the federal government or capitalism is too simplistic; we’ve long lived with both, and yet abortion rates have varied tremendously over the years. We know that the most common reasons women give for seeking abortions are financial—and pro-life organizations do a lot to try to ease those financial burdens, which often saves lives—but that can’t be the whole story either, beause children outside the womb are expensive too, and yet low-income mothers don’t kill their older children a million times a year. It’s complicated. Government refusal to recognize prenatal rights, corporate failure to provide adequate family leave, poverty, lack of health insurance, cultural acceptance of dehumanization (i.e. “clump of cells”), social shaming of pregnancy in teens and unmarried people, fear mongering about disabilities, foregoing or misusing contraception, predatory men abandoning their responsibilities… all these factors and many others play a role.”

What additional factors can you think of? And if you could change just ONE thing to prevent abortions, what would it be?

An excellent conversation ensued. In no particular order, here are a few comments that caught our eye.

Krystal W.: I think the culture around pregnancy needs the most change. Stop telling women and men that they can’t do things when they have children. Every time they say that, I think of someone I know who did those exact things. Can’t go to school and be pregnant, can’t get a good job, can’t have a social life, can’t be happy, can’t retire, can’t afford it (because yes kids can be pricey but guess what poor people have always had the most children and it works out), etc.

Leette E.: EDUCATION. Our continued failure to provide all children with comprehensive sex education which should include embryology and prenatal development is a huge part of the reason abortion is still an issue.

Victoria R.: More 👏🏻Paid👏🏻Parental leave👏🏻 At his first job my husband didn’t even really get any sort of family leave at all. Now he gets 16 weeks paid! Definitely looking forward to that aspect of baby #2 waaaayyyyy more

Crystal K.: I would change the way that society views women’s bodies. Pregnancy is not a disease that the woman needs rescued from, nor are babies tumors that need removal. Pregnancy, in fact, is an indicator that women’s bodies are doing exactly what they were designed to do. Men are NOT the ultimate standard to aspire to physically, and we shouldn’t have to change our physiology to match theirs to be accepted in society.

David J.: The one and only thing would be a Constitutional amendment protecting life in the womb. The only factor that ended slavery forever was the 13th amendment. The only thing which will end abortion forever is a Constitutional amendment.

Abigail H.: Stop viewing human beings as objects. Women aren’t objects for pleasure. Babies aren’t clumps of cells in the womb. We, as individuals, are not cogs in the machine. When we truly respect the dignity inherent in human life, we may be able to move past viewing human bodies as commodities.

Katie G.: The fact that government officials vote to give Planned Parenthood more money and that Planned Parenthood pays for their political campaigns is a huge, unaddressed conflict of interest.

Chrysten C.: Birthing a child in a hospital should cost less than an abortion. Unfortunately, when one is financially struggling, that comparison between a few hundred and thousands is a practical deterrent.

Elizabeth B.: White male business leaders say that women need legal abortion to achieve economic parity. This is only true because they disproportionately control the business world and they do not want their employees to have maternity leave, time off to care for sick children, flexible work schedules, etc. And to the extent they can minimize women taking maternity leave, they can also justify the lack of paternity leave policies. These a**hats see children only as impediments to profits.

Mark K.: I know it sounds old school, but teach young men how to be responsible!


Photo credit: Maria Oswalt on Unsplash

We Asked, You Answered: Systemic Factors Driving Abortion

Woman holds a sign that reads "Abortion is a flesh tax on the poor"

We recently posted on the Secular Pro-Life facebook page: 

An author working on a book about political engagement asked: “Conservatives I speak with often blame the federal government for a lot of social problems, while liberals tend to blame capitalism. Viewing the issue of abortion from a systemic standpoint, what are the institutional sources of this problem?”

After telling him that volumes could be written on that question and giving him an academic lead, I answered: “Blaming the federal government or capitalism is too simplistic; we’ve long lived with both, and yet abortion rates have varied tremendously over the years. We know that the most common reasons women give for seeking abortions are financial—and pro-life organizations do a lot to try to ease those financial burdens, which often saves lives—but that can’t be the whole story either, beause children outside the womb are expensive too, and yet low-income mothers don’t kill their older children a million times a year. It’s complicated. Government refusal to recognize prenatal rights, corporate failure to provide adequate family leave, poverty, lack of health insurance, cultural acceptance of dehumanization (i.e. “clump of cells”), social shaming of pregnancy in teens and unmarried people, fear mongering about disabilities, foregoing or misusing contraception, predatory men abandoning their responsibilities… all these factors and many others play a role.”

What additional factors can you think of? And if you could change just ONE thing to prevent abortions, what would it be?

An excellent conversation ensued. In no particular order, here are a few comments that caught our eye.

Krystal W.: I think the culture around pregnancy needs the most change. Stop telling women and men that they can’t do things when they have children. Every time they say that, I think of someone I know who did those exact things. Can’t go to school and be pregnant, can’t get a good job, can’t have a social life, can’t be happy, can’t retire, can’t afford it (because yes kids can be pricey but guess what poor people have always had the most children and it works out), etc.

Leette E.: EDUCATION. Our continued failure to provide all children with comprehensive sex education which should include embryology and prenatal development is a huge part of the reason abortion is still an issue.

Victoria R.: More 👏🏻Paid👏🏻Parental leave👏🏻 At his first job my husband didn’t even really get any sort of family leave at all. Now he gets 16 weeks paid! Definitely looking forward to that aspect of baby #2 waaaayyyyy more

Crystal K.: I would change the way that society views women’s bodies. Pregnancy is not a disease that the woman needs rescued from, nor are babies tumors that need removal. Pregnancy, in fact, is an indicator that women’s bodies are doing exactly what they were designed to do. Men are NOT the ultimate standard to aspire to physically, and we shouldn’t have to change our physiology to match theirs to be accepted in society.

David J.: The one and only thing would be a Constitutional amendment protecting life in the womb. The only factor that ended slavery forever was the 13th amendment. The only thing which will end abortion forever is a Constitutional amendment.

Abigail H.: Stop viewing human beings as objects. Women aren’t objects for pleasure. Babies aren’t clumps of cells in the womb. We, as individuals, are not cogs in the machine. When we truly respect the dignity inherent in human life, we may be able to move past viewing human bodies as commodities.

Katie G.: The fact that government officials vote to give Planned Parenthood more money and that Planned Parenthood pays for their political campaigns is a huge, unaddressed conflict of interest.

Chrysten C.: Birthing a child in a hospital should cost less than an abortion. Unfortunately, when one is financially struggling, that comparison between a few hundred and thousands is a practical deterrent.

Elizabeth B.: White male business leaders say that women need legal abortion to achieve economic parity. This is only true because they disproportionately control the business world and they do not want their employees to have maternity leave, time off to care for sick children, flexible work schedules, etc. And to the extent they can minimize women taking maternity leave, they can also justify the lack of paternity leave policies. These a**hats see children only as impediments to profits.

Mark K.: I know it sounds old school, but teach young men how to be responsible!


Photo credit: Maria Oswalt on Unsplash

We Asked, You Answered: Conversations with Pro-Choice Friends

We asked our social media followers: “Are you close to pro-choice people? Do you talk about abortion with them? If so, how does it go?” We were flooded with responses. Here’s a sampling.


Colleen A.: A few. We don’t tend to get into a lot of direct discussion about it. But where I’ve had most success is when they go on a rant with horrible stereotypes of pro-lifers, and I just speak up and say, “You know ME, and I’m pro-life. You know I’m not like that. So why would you say things like this?” Sometimes the best I get is “The pro-life movement needs more people like you,” which is at least the start of a win.


Linda K.: Most everyone in what I would call my larger circle identify as pro-choice. I have a small circle of people I trust, and we share privately. We talk about how we can make this world kinder to mothers and babies. As a woman born with a disability, I share my thoughts on how choice and eugenics intersect. I have had some civil and generative conversations with pro-choice friends.


Katherine A.: I am close with pro-choice people, but we don’t talk about it because they refuse to believe the CDC statistics about why women get abortions and insist that no woman ever has an abortion for financial reasons or because her partner or family are pressuring her or even the number of elective abortions that occur. It’s hard to have a conversation when people refuse to accept health care data from reputable sources.

Above: Students dialogue about abortion.
Via this post.

Jack V.: I’m pretty far left on everything but abortion and guns and as such most of my close friends are far left too. Typically it just turns to me pointing out the hypocrisy of our side being the bleeding hearts yet they won’t care for the unborn. And of course they reply with the it’s not a baby bullshit and we never really get anywhere. I’ve almost convinced two of them though; hopefully I get there one day.


Carmen P.: Tell you the truth, I don’t have many friends that are pro-choice because it’s such a huge divide. I feel that their paradigm is completely different than mine.

Leette E.: I am. Several of my family members are strongly pro-choice and I find that typically they don’t want to engage with people who have opposing views myself included. Usually this is because they don’t want to be confronted with the horrible truth of abortion and know they can’t get away with the typical “misogyny! Woman hating! Anti-choice!” arguments that they would with people they don’t know. It’s easy to fling insults at someone you don’t love. So we don’t talk about it as often as I’d like.

Katherine J.: [My conversations are] often better than expected. Often the stumbling block is how a child so small and undeveloped could be considered alive. Other stumbling blocks are the mother’s unchosen suffering (especially in cases of rape) and the fear of being considered to be forcing their beliefs on others.

Candace R.: We talk occasionally. Minds aren’t changed, but we all are very caring people who want good things for mothers and babies. I try to focus my energy on fixing the causes of abortion instead of abortion laws.

Caren G.: I don’t bring it up. A couple of close coworker friends assumed because I am rather feminist and progressive that I am also pro-choice. They were talking about some pro choice movie they loved. I recommend they watch Unplanned. I can’t remember exactly how it came out that I am pro-life… but I did flat out say it. I said “I’m pro all life.” I love and respect all life… animals, the planet and especially humans. I said that if I have a chicken who has started sitting on eggs then abandons some — I try everything I can to incubate and save them… because even their little unhatched chicken lives matter to me. So much more the human baby ones. They said… “well at least you’re consistent” and were very nice about it spite of their strong views.

Jazminn J.: Most of my friends are pro-choice but unfortunately many of them including family just think I’m the most hateful person ever even if I don’t talk about it. It’s always a huge thing if I make ONE pro-life post.

Carissa E.: I get tired of the same old “digs” at pro-lifers from my so-called “progressive” friends. They say we don’t care about black lives, immigrants, women, science, etc… We care about giving zygotes more rights than living human beings. So annoying. I usually just politely suggest they look at this group or New Wave Feminists to see all the good pro-life people do and what we actually believe, which is that all life matters, from womb to tomb.

Eden M.: I’m in Canada where the pro-choice position is an extremely strong cultural default, so you’re bound to end up close to pro-choice people wherever you go. Most of the pro-choice friends I talk to are respectful and thoughtful (otherwise we wouldn’t be friends!). Same with pro-choice family. We even agree on most of the relevant facts surrounding abortion, including the fact that ZEFs are human organisms. The difference is that I believe that fact has moral weight and should affect our treatment of sex and pregnancy, and they do not. I have never heard a pro-choice friend address that fact in a way I found adequate, other than to wave it off. As in “Yes, technically a ZEF is a human, but…” in the same way you would say, “Yes, technically a tomato is not a vegetable, but…” There are other differences, but I find they trickle down from this big one.

Morgan S.: It goes how it has always gone, for 35+ years now: they write me off as an “extremist,” they don’t want to hear what I have to say. I consider myself a rational, science-based, pro-life feminist (NO contradiction in this for me) who sees abortion as a symptom of overt social injustice, but they just dismiss me. That’s why I tend to talk about other topics at this point; I am bone-tired.


Katie S.: So many very loved friends and family. I talk to some more often than others, it goes better with those I talk to more often about it, and I get a lot more support for the pro-life work I do from the ones I talk to most about it, and that is both surprising and appreciated.

Kristina A.: I’m literally the only one in my entire close circle of family and friends (well, spare one or two). If I had a dollar for every time I heard that pro-life people are crazy or stupid “but not you Kris…” I’d be rich.

We Asked, You Answered: Conversations with Pro-Choice Friends

We asked our social media followers: “Are you close to pro-choice people? Do you talk about abortion with them? If so, how does it go?” We were flooded with responses. Here’s a sampling.


Colleen A.: A few. We don’t tend to get into a lot of direct discussion about it. But where I’ve had most success is when they go on a rant with horrible stereotypes of pro-lifers, and I just speak up and say, “You know ME, and I’m pro-life. You know I’m not like that. So why would you say things like this?” Sometimes the best I get is “The pro-life movement needs more people like you,” which is at least the start of a win.


Linda K.: Most everyone in what I would call my larger circle identify as pro-choice. I have a small circle of people I trust, and we share privately. We talk about how we can make this world kinder to mothers and babies. As a woman born with a disability, I share my thoughts on how choice and eugenics intersect. I have had some civil and generative conversations with pro-choice friends.


Katherine A.: I am close with pro-choice people, but we don’t talk about it because they refuse to believe the CDC statistics about why women get abortions and insist that no woman ever has an abortion for financial reasons or because her partner or family are pressuring her or even the number of elective abortions that occur. It’s hard to have a conversation when people refuse to accept health care data from reputable sources.

Above: Students dialogue about abortion.
Via this post.

Jack V.: I’m pretty far left on everything but abortion and guns and as such most of my close friends are far left too. Typically it just turns to me pointing out the hypocrisy of our side being the bleeding hearts yet they won’t care for the unborn. And of course they reply with the it’s not a baby bullshit and we never really get anywhere. I’ve almost convinced two of them though; hopefully I get there one day.


Carmen P.: Tell you the truth, I don’t have many friends that are pro-choice because it’s such a huge divide. I feel that their paradigm is completely different than mine.

Leette E.: I am. Several of my family members are strongly pro-choice and I find that typically they don’t want to engage with people who have opposing views myself included. Usually this is because they don’t want to be confronted with the horrible truth of abortion and know they can’t get away with the typical “misogyny! Woman hating! Anti-choice!” arguments that they would with people they don’t know. It’s easy to fling insults at someone you don’t love. So we don’t talk about it as often as I’d like.

Katherine J.: [My conversations are] often better than expected. Often the stumbling block is how a child so small and undeveloped could be considered alive. Other stumbling blocks are the mother’s unchosen suffering (especially in cases of rape) and the fear of being considered to be forcing their beliefs on others.

Candace R.: We talk occasionally. Minds aren’t changed, but we all are very caring people who want good things for mothers and babies. I try to focus my energy on fixing the causes of abortion instead of abortion laws.

Caren G.: I don’t bring it up. A couple of close coworker friends assumed because I am rather feminist and progressive that I am also pro-choice. They were talking about some pro choice movie they loved. I recommend they watch Unplanned. I can’t remember exactly how it came out that I am pro-life… but I did flat out say it. I said “I’m pro all life.” I love and respect all life… animals, the planet and especially humans. I said that if I have a chicken who has started sitting on eggs then abandons some — I try everything I can to incubate and save them… because even their little unhatched chicken lives matter to me. So much more the human baby ones. They said… “well at least you’re consistent” and were very nice about it spite of their strong views.

Jazminn J.: Most of my friends are pro-choice but unfortunately many of them including family just think I’m the most hateful person ever even if I don’t talk about it. It’s always a huge thing if I make ONE pro-life post.

Carissa E.: I get tired of the same old “digs” at pro-lifers from my so-called “progressive” friends. They say we don’t care about black lives, immigrants, women, science, etc… We care about giving zygotes more rights than living human beings. So annoying. I usually just politely suggest they look at this group or New Wave Feminists to see all the good pro-life people do and what we actually believe, which is that all life matters, from womb to tomb.

Eden M.: I’m in Canada where the pro-choice position is an extremely strong cultural default, so you’re bound to end up close to pro-choice people wherever you go. Most of the pro-choice friends I talk to are respectful and thoughtful (otherwise we wouldn’t be friends!). Same with pro-choice family. We even agree on most of the relevant facts surrounding abortion, including the fact that ZEFs are human organisms. The difference is that I believe that fact has moral weight and should affect our treatment of sex and pregnancy, and they do not. I have never heard a pro-choice friend address that fact in a way I found adequate, other than to wave it off. As in “Yes, technically a ZEF is a human, but…” in the same way you would say, “Yes, technically a tomato is not a vegetable, but…” There are other differences, but I find they trickle down from this big one.

Morgan S.: It goes how it has always gone, for 35+ years now: they write me off as an “extremist,” they don’t want to hear what I have to say. I consider myself a rational, science-based, pro-life feminist (NO contradiction in this for me) who sees abortion as a symptom of overt social injustice, but they just dismiss me. That’s why I tend to talk about other topics at this point; I am bone-tired.


Katie S.: So many very loved friends and family. I talk to some more often than others, it goes better with those I talk to more often about it, and I get a lot more support for the pro-life work I do from the ones I talk to most about it, and that is both surprising and appreciated.

Kristina A.: I’m literally the only one in my entire close circle of family and friends (well, spare one or two). If I had a dollar for every time I heard that pro-life people are crazy or stupid “but not you Kris…” I’d be rich.

We Asked, You Answered: Would You Partner with Pro-Choice Moderates?

We recently asked our followers on social media: “If an organization opposed abortion after 21 weeks but supported earlier abortions, would you be willing to work with them publicly to outlaw the later abortions? Why or why not?” (The question was purely hypothetical; to the best of our knowledge, no such organization exists.) A lively, civil discussion ensued. In no particular order, here are a few of the top responses:

Mikalea B.: Yes, basically. Politics is like public transportation. If there isn’t a bus going directly to where you want to be, you take the one going the closest…

Rachel M.: No. What’s the difference between killing a 6 week old child and a 22 week old child? None. A younger human is not less valuable or less worth saving than an older human.

Chris S.: Tough call. I would feel bad aligning with such an organization since they fundamentally differ in the most important way. Also only around 2% of abortions happen after 20 weeks. But of course it would be good to save even those few lives.

Ultrasounds of a 20-week-old baby

Rafael G.: I’d be more inclined to ask them why they would support the choice to have an abortion at 20 weeks, 23 hours, and 59 seconds, but not one second after.

Tess S.: If we had to trade giving up attempts to restrict earlier abortion in order to work with them to restrict later abortion, then no. If there was no expectation for a trade off then yes.

Devonie B.: No. I’m not willing to compromise on the fact that abortion kills a unique human being at whatever stage it occurs. Also, if their 20 week cut off is based on pain perception, more recent research suggests that its possible to feel pain at around 13 weeks.

Lisa R.: Yes for sure. No qualms. However when I’ve talked with pro-choice friends about this, they are playing defense. They say “I’ll agree to banning late term abortions if you’ll agree to allow and stop fighting to end earlier abortions.” So we agree late term abortions are bad, but they don’t want to work with me to ban them because they perceive it as giving me something I want and getting nothing in return from me.

sweetwonderbear: Only if there was no better option. Drawing the line anywhere other than conception is still based on their own personal feelings rather than science. It’s better than nothing but we should instead be supporting organizations that aim to educate people and outlaw abortions as close as we can get to conception.

Rebecca D.: I personally would. Especially because so many people in my life are pro-choice, I strive to find common ground wherever I can. This is true when this position is reflective of what the American public thinks on abortion, which I think is helpful for pointing out on the abortion issue in this country; people might be more easy to convince if they’re on the fence about late-term abortions if they understand how most people feel on the issue. When the United States has some of the most relaxed abortion laws in the entire world, this is absolutely a necessary initial step when it comes to our laws.

Michael S.: I wouldn’t work with them, because I wouldn’t want to be interpreted in any way as condoning abortion during any stage. By working with them, anyone can come back at you later and say “but you worked with an organization that supported legalized abortion during part of the pregnancy”.

Kyle T.: Working with an organization isn’t equivalent to supporting it. I wouldn’t be averse to working with any organization actively campaigning for some legislation akin to the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act or a late-term abortion ban. Of course, this would be while simultaneously working with other organizations like the National Pro-Life Alliance on legislation like the Life at Conception Act which bans all abortions with no exceptions. There wouldn’t be any public doubt as to my own position, and yet I’d be doing all I can in regards to coalition-building to get any legislation that saves any lives passed. Incremental legislation is only problematic if we forget to focus our energies on non-incremental legislation like the Life at Conception Act. But if we work on such legislation simultaneously, we are keeping both goods of working to save any lives possible and working to establish the right to life for all embryonic and fetal people.

Ryan N.: Yes. While all abortions should be outlawed, if progress can be made to outlaw abortion and save lives (even if they may be few) it should be pursued. The lives of the preborn lost by abortion should outweigh any animosity held against those who may think differently than us.

Shae-Lynn K.: I would, simply because it is a start. That’s usually how you should begin with addressing the pro-life movement with those who are pro-choice. Reasoning with them on late term abortions makes it easier for them to eventually see all abortions as wrong. Just my experience.

Keena Y.: Yes. But I would also continue to work with groups that ban abortion after the first trimester. And groups that want heartbeat laws. And groups that want the practice outlawed entirely. Let’s save some babies even if we can’t save all the babies.

We Asked, You Answered: Would You Partner with Pro-Choice Moderates?

We recently asked our followers on social media: “If an organization opposed abortion after 21 weeks but supported earlier abortions, would you be willing to work with them publicly to outlaw the later abortions? Why or why not?” (The question was purely hypothetical; to the best of our knowledge, no such organization exists.) A lively, civil discussion ensued. In no particular order, here are a few of the top responses:

Mikalea B.: Yes, basically. Politics is like public transportation. If there isn’t a bus going directly to where you want to be, you take the one going the closest…

Rachel M.: No. What’s the difference between killing a 6 week old child and a 22 week old child? None. A younger human is not less valuable or less worth saving than an older human.

Chris S.: Tough call. I would feel bad aligning with such an organization since they fundamentally differ in the most important way. Also only around 2% of abortions happen after 20 weeks. But of course it would be good to save even those few lives.

Ultrasounds of a 20-week-old baby

Rafael G.: I’d be more inclined to ask them why they would support the choice to have an abortion at 20 weeks, 23 hours, and 59 seconds, but not one second after.

Tess S.: If we had to trade giving up attempts to restrict earlier abortion in order to work with them to restrict later abortion, then no. If there was no expectation for a trade off then yes.

Devonie B.: No. I’m not willing to compromise on the fact that abortion kills a unique human being at whatever stage it occurs. Also, if their 20 week cut off is based on pain perception, more recent research suggests that its possible to feel pain at around 13 weeks.

Lisa R.: Yes for sure. No qualms. However when I’ve talked with pro-choice friends about this, they are playing defense. They say “I’ll agree to banning late term abortions if you’ll agree to allow and stop fighting to end earlier abortions.” So we agree late term abortions are bad, but they don’t want to work with me to ban them because they perceive it as giving me something I want and getting nothing in return from me.

sweetwonderbear: Only if there was no better option. Drawing the line anywhere other than conception is still based on their own personal feelings rather than science. It’s better than nothing but we should instead be supporting organizations that aim to educate people and outlaw abortions as close as we can get to conception.

Rebecca D.: I personally would. Especially because so many people in my life are pro-choice, I strive to find common ground wherever I can. This is true when this position is reflective of what the American public thinks on abortion, which I think is helpful for pointing out on the abortion issue in this country; people might be more easy to convince if they’re on the fence about late-term abortions if they understand how most people feel on the issue. When the United States has some of the most relaxed abortion laws in the entire world, this is absolutely a necessary initial step when it comes to our laws.

Michael S.: I wouldn’t work with them, because I wouldn’t want to be interpreted in any way as condoning abortion during any stage. By working with them, anyone can come back at you later and say “but you worked with an organization that supported legalized abortion during part of the pregnancy”.

Kyle T.: Working with an organization isn’t equivalent to supporting it. I wouldn’t be averse to working with any organization actively campaigning for some legislation akin to the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act or a late-term abortion ban. Of course, this would be while simultaneously working with other organizations like the National Pro-Life Alliance on legislation like the Life at Conception Act which bans all abortions with no exceptions. There wouldn’t be any public doubt as to my own position, and yet I’d be doing all I can in regards to coalition-building to get any legislation that saves any lives passed. Incremental legislation is only problematic if we forget to focus our energies on non-incremental legislation like the Life at Conception Act. But if we work on such legislation simultaneously, we are keeping both goods of working to save any lives possible and working to establish the right to life for all embryonic and fetal people.

Ryan N.: Yes. While all abortions should be outlawed, if progress can be made to outlaw abortion and save lives (even if they may be few) it should be pursued. The lives of the preborn lost by abortion should outweigh any animosity held against those who may think differently than us.

Shae-Lynn K.: I would, simply because it is a start. That’s usually how you should begin with addressing the pro-life movement with those who are pro-choice. Reasoning with them on late term abortions makes it easier for them to eventually see all abortions as wrong. Just my experience.

Keena Y.: Yes. But I would also continue to work with groups that ban abortion after the first trimester. And groups that want heartbeat laws. And groups that want the practice outlawed entirely. Let’s save some babies even if we can’t save all the babies.