Monday, January 30, 2012

That's more like it!

200 hits in the last two days! Keep it coming...

Dynamic equivalence and the Daily

You may recall my mental preparation on the way to protest Obama for the off-chance that we'd be interviewed. It went something like this:
"Well, first of all, for us this has nothing to do about being Republican or Democrat. [look up and smile at reporter] It's about a right that transcends every political party--the right to life. The president we have speaking right now is without question the most pro-abortion president in our history."
Well, here's how the Michigan Daily article turned out:
The protesters outside of Obama’s speech included those who were anti-abortion, anti-fracking, anti-Israel and Tea Party members. LSA sophomore Joe Lipa, events chair of Students for Life, an anti-abortion advocacy group, said he was frustrated that the issue of abortion has become less of a prominent issue of national debate.

“We’re seeing unprecedented attacks both on the unborn and also on religious freedoms,” Lipa said.
Note to self: Next time a Daily reporter askes "Can I interview you?" first ask "Is your recorder ON?"

In all seriousness, though, that quote is probably exactly what I said...just minus the all-important context. I suppose it could have turned out worse.

But still...Dynamic equivalence, anyone?

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Dude, you can't have an opinion. Now go make me a sammich.

“YOU DON’T CARE ABOUT WOMYN. I HAD SIX SISTERS. THAT’S WHY I’M HERE. I CARE ABOUT WOMYN.” Another Saturday morning. Another altercation with the “escort” outside of Planned Parenthood. Another ironic observation of my (Claire's) apparent apathy towards womanhood. isn't pretty.
This subject of chauvinism, both male and female, is one that’s often bandied across the protest line. Either you’re a chauvinist for being pro-life and female, for being pro-choice and male, for being pro-choice and a feminist, and/or being pro-life and being a man. (Good thing everyone grew out of defamation in 2nd grade). While the name-calling makes me laff (and confuses the hell out of me), it also points to one of the most frightening problems within this movement. “You people are chauvinists” they shout, yet fight for the destruction of the greatest distinction between masculinity and femininity. “We care about rights” the pro-choicers claim, and yet strip half the population of theirs. “You have no right to vocalize your opinion” men are told. “You can’t get pregnant. It’s not your issue.”

Since when did we have to be something to have an opinion? I’m not a heroine addict, but I know from logic, science, and life-experiences that the abuse of heroine is bad. I’m not Packers fan (Deo gratias), but I know from logic, science, and life-experiences that being one would be wrong. So, this argument that men are stripped from their opinions just because they can’t be pregnant is kind of...well, chauvinistic. And stupid.
I would be crying too if I was on that team...

Talking with one of my great friends, tonight, I discovered that seemingly apathetic guys have strong opinions about this issue. (No, I’m not judgmental at all.) While claiming that it was weird for guys to have a strong opinion on the abortion debate - a product of the gender muzzle -  this same gentleman turned around and defended his own pro-life views to his pro-choice, female housemate. Now this guy is about as mellow as you can get - he’s has anaphylactic fits at the word “politics” - yet he felt the frustration that comes with censorship. “The kid is technically and biologically half mine...” he said in response to her oh-so-original argument. Can you get any more eloquent or succinct? I think not. (Virgil is probably disappointed in the lack of iambic pentameter. My friend goes to OSU, though, so it can’t be helped. Sigh.) 
 Omg, it's so beautiful...
While the logic of the issue is kind of necessary, the simple human experience is even more so (um, sorry Aristotle?) While it’s true that at least 14% of women would have reconsidered abortion if they had support from a partner, the importance of equal gender vocalization is not one that should be restricted to relationships. Men, speak up in your classroom, at the dinner table, in the middle of the movie. (Just kidding, don’t do that. Unless it’s a Nicholas Sparks movie. Then feel free.) Not only are you exercising your rights (GO AMURICA), but you may also be giving hope to an abortion-minded, desperate mother. If she gets pregnant in the future, my friend’s housemate may turn to my friend because he’s the only one she’s sure that will support her in her distress. Don’t let anyone tell you your declaration of Truth is invalid because your anatomy is different. Just like I laugh at the “escort” for telling me that I don’t care about my gender because I am a pro-life woman, laugh at the people who tell you that the validity of your opinion depends on anything other than the quality of your argument.

Friday, January 27, 2012

BREAKING: LiveAction's Lila Rose tweets about SFL!

As if we haven't had enough excitement for one day!

Read the article here! UMSFL kudos to Cassie Balfour of the Michigan Daily for such a great article!

Here's an excerpt:

The tension on the Diag was so palpable it seemed to tighten the slack lines tied to trees surrounding the horrifying display. Pictures of supposedly aborted fetuses were juxtaposed next to the graphic, blown-up pictures of Holocaust victims, the body of a dead African child and a bolded textbook definition of genocide.

As a proud pro-choicer, I went home to change into my stylishly cut “I Stand With Planned Parenthood” American Apparel t-shirt, crafting a scathing opinion piece in my head to write for The Michigan Daily. I loudly ridiculed the pro-lifers, whom I characterized as having “crazy eyes,” with my friends and huffed and puffed and worst of all I dismissed the students huddled around tables on the edge of the Diag, so frustrated they weren’t being heard that they enlisted full color graphics that screamed.

At the time it seemed like the pro-lifers were seriously screwing themselves over.

But I do remember seeing one young woman, a student, standing nervously behind the display, pro-life pamphlets in hand. I wish I had talked to her instead of openly laughing at what I perceived at the time to be really poor activism.

So months after the inflammatory display, just in time for the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, I visited the group behind the Genocide Awareness Project — the University of Michigan Students for Life. [...]
UPDATE: In just 52 minutes, the above article went from not even being on the list to the 4th most read article on! I guess when somebody has 7k+ followers on Twitter, that's pretty much to be expected. #Thanks, Lila!

UPDATE #2: We're up to #3! Let's beat out Obama!

More Excitement--Obama Protest!

"Well, first of all, for us this has nothing to do about being Republican or Democrat. [look up and smile at reporter] It's about a right that transcends every political party--the right to life."
--Mental practice for the off-chance that we get interviewed. Then it happened.

What do you do when the most pro-abortion president in history comes to your college campus? Any guesses, anybody?

UPDATE: Some of the protesters, including SFL's own Brian Koziara, made the Detroit Free Press.

Protestors against Predident Barack Obama voice their opinions against the President as others stand in line waiting outside of Al Glick Field House at 1300 South State St. In Ann Arbor , Mich. as they want to get seats for President Barack Obama's appearance and speech today.
Good point, Brian--Where are the jobs...for the 50 million Americans who should be alive and contributing to the workforce?

Quite a week!

Here's a quick recap of the excitement of the past week:

Exactly one week ago today, we had just left via MegaBus for the March for Life in DC. Little did we know what would happen to us on the way. A fluke snowstorm, a broken bus door, and a flat tire at 4am turned the usually bearable 10 hour drive into a maddening 17 hour affair. As one attendee remarked, it was like we drove to DC and back...just to get to DC! This ordeal really dampened our spirits. Not.

Our experience in DC can only be described as one thing...stunning. From cramming four six people into each hotel room (gotta save the $, you know) to visiting the National Basilica (had to get it out of my system) to the sold-out SFLA conference (world's largest student pro-life gathering) to the March itself (our flag got some serious airtime on EWTN) there's really no way to describe it. So I'll let the pictures do the talking...

Dinner after visiting the Basilica. This Burger joint in Chinatown literally dropped down from heaven.

UMSFL increased its attendance at the Surpreme Court by 91.3%--from 23 last year to a record 44 this year!

TV screenshot of our flag!

These three SFLers, along with hundreds of thousands of marchers, were granted the miraculous power of being invisible to every news outlet except those (sic) beginning with E and ending with N.

More pics of the event can be found here. [Hat tip: Sandie Weathers] If you have any pictures from the March, please send them in. Or better yet, post them to Facebook!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Standing Up for Life - Better Than Peeing Your Pants

Being pro-life definitely has it’s moments. Whether its that awkward conversation with your GSI about why you’ll be missing class next week to march with thousands of violent, rabid radicals, or your tension filled colloquy with your post-feminist grandmother about why reproductive “rights” is, in fact, a misnomer, the pro-life path is challenging. It’s important, however, to remember that while awkwardness and tension may ensue, so do understanding, humor, and solidarity. 
The face of the pro-life movement? Yes, please. Seriously.

During my junior year of high school, I (Claire) volunteered at the Genocide Awareness Project. This immense display compares Rawandan, Jewish, and other genocides to the abortion epidemic in America. While this project conveys crystal clear Truth, what it lacks is any form of subtly. GAP was coming to a large, public university right in the middle of Philadelphia. Incidentally, my father was the Chair of the Chemistry department of this university. I’m kind of oblivious to huge, looming, painfully obvious, Murphy’s law type situations. Hint hint. Walking onto campus that morning, I called my friend to discover the location of the exhibit. In two minutes, I found it, as 5x10 billboards in the middle of campus are rather hard to miss. At that moment, I recognised exactly the location chosen by the well meaning, but ignorant people of GAP. What better place to put a pro-life exhibit smack dab on the front lawn of my father’s building. Even better, why not make it visible to anyone entering or leaving the building by the doors 2 feet away. Now, my father is not pro-choice. He doesn’t advocate for Planned Parenthood, and he’s not a fan of Obama. However, he is staunchly against any form of social disruption, and a huge display of extremely inflammatory issues right in front of his building is the textbook definition of social disruption. I was supporting it. I was advocating it. And luckily, I was going to be there allllllllllll day.
As you can imagine, it was a wonderful 8 hours of hearing and sharing stories, debating the preciousness of life, and engaging people in their deepest beliefs. Of course, every time I saw a tall, ruddy faced man with salt and pepper hair, I ducked behind a sign. My heart stopped a couple times that day, fearing I wouldn’t evade the wrath of one specific chemistry Chair. After a particularly involved conversation, I was gulping down half a bottle of water when I hear my name called. Turning around, I spilled the remaining half as I started to choke. CURSE YOU MURPHY.

“Oh hey, Dad,” I gasped, simultaneously trying to avoid his gaze and gauge his reaction. Should I duck and cover? Should I fain being lost? What if I fainted...would he just go away? “Hmph,” was his tortuously ambiguous response as he thumbed through the pamphlet explaining the display. “So....what do you think?” I asked. “You IDIOT.” I mentally groaned. “Could you ask anything WORSE?!” (Nope.) “Well...” He deliberately gazed at one of the most disturbing pictures, the mangled head of a baby held by forceps. “You know, it’s a frightening message. But it’s one that needs to get out.”

While I still get chided by my father for starting pro-life debates at inappropriate times (What do you mean the Uncle John’s wake is not the right place? He was Irish...he was ALL about friendly debates), our bond has changed ever since that stressful moment. The knowledge that my father supports both my passion, but also the movement itself has not only strengthened our relationship, but also made me so incredibly happy. That day was a great lesson about cowardice and how trying to avoid people results in missed happiness and water down your pants. Be daring. Be brave. Be ALL IN for life.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Does anyone know CPR? Top SFL Blogging Moments of 2011

According to medical research, the average person can survive approximately three minutes without oxygen. This blog, however, hasn't breathed life in a month and a half.

If it were human, it would have died 21,600 times by now.

Therefore, we will attempt to perform some blogging CPR (Collaborative Pro-life Revival) in order to encourage others to help save this collection of bits and bytes. We hearby present...

SFL's Top Blogging Moments of 2011

The "Waxing" Eloquent

"...somehow, our group always finds the adventure in the most quotidian circumstances...As the sky grew darker overhead, Wolverine hopes waxed and waned until we were ultimately party to one of the most dazzling victories in recent memory. It was the perfect ending to the the most SFL-esque day."
[Hat tip: AP]

The Reassuring

The Shocking

"No one on our side is for killing babies, which is essentially what abortion is."
[Hat tip: SSA]

The Embarrassing
@ Carmen: Thanks for your "broken condom" statement.
You once again make it clear that your lunatic group would call women ( or couples) "nazis " because they had the good sense to realize that they might be unprepared to responsibly raise a child for any number of good reasons ...including the good of the potential child.... just because of an accident with defective latex.
With that kind of reasoning ( and your equally stupid tactics)how did you and your loudmouthed collaborators get into a supposedly elite school??

[Hat tip: S.A. Tee (not verified)]

The Downright Stupid

[Hat tips: NM (good) and Planned Parenthood (bad)]

The Disappointing

[Hat tip: None given, considering the current number of pageviews.]

The Duel

[Hat tip: JL "And no, I don't mean the JL in the club; I mean the JL who's 16 years old..."]

The Hateful (sic)
However, while members of the Genocide Awareness Project cloaked themselves in their right of exercising free speech, their display was an act of hate crime — a hate crime against the families and friends of victims of the Holocaust, slavery, refugees from the genocides in Cambodia, Darfur and Rwanda. [And against the 50 million victims of abortion?]
[Hat tip: CL (to clarify, not the SFL member whose name is the first syllable of the underlined word)]

The Famous

[Hat tips: CA and AP]

The Close-minded 
I am appalled that the University, one of the most open-minded places I could ever imagine, allowed the act of hate crimes to appear on campus for not just one, but two days...No one, pro-life or pro-choice, should ever condone this "project." Ever. Especially one of the most diverse universities in the world. [diverse, adj--"Showing a great deal of variety"]
 [Hat tip: Out of charity for this "repeat offender" we shall avoid tipping our hat to him/her again.]

The Goal 
I walked back to my spot and after a few minutes, the car with the two women is leaving the PP parking lot and as they are driving by, the young woman driving shouts out of her window, "I decided not to do it!"  I asked "do what, have the abortion?"  And she says "yes!!"  I could only say happily, That is great news!!" 
 [Hat tip: IS and SV]

Fellow SFLers: Who's willing to help perform some blog CPR? Who's interested in learning?