Earlier this week, I headed out with some of the volunteers from a local pro-life community group to participate in the group’s first high-school “Choice” Chain. It was the first time this particular school had been confronted with a “Choice” Chain display, and the reaction, as always, was mixed.
A crowd of students quickly gathered around our signs, and while some students were angry, many had serious questions they wanted to ask.
“What about rape?” one girl asked me.
“That’s right!” another student exclaimed.
“They’re not even human! It’s just like a bunch of cells,” a young man declared to no one in particular.
“I just don’t understand why you have to do this at a high-school,” a girl said, while others nodded in agreement. “There’s students here that have found themselves in difficult situations.” (This, of course, being precisely why we need to engage high-school students; if you are old enough to be in a situation where you may seek an abortion, you are old enough to be educated on what abortion actually is.)
While I appreciated the interest of the students, it was easy to become frustrated. The questions were coming from all sides, and just as I responded to one question, another student appeared to ask the same one. Every student deserved an answer, but there were only four of us and easily fifty of them milling about. I tried to be as articulate as possible, responding to as many questions as I could. Of course, this meant that I couldn’t follow a conversation to its logical conclusion, and as one question led to another, I knew that I was only reaching the tip of the iceberg for many of the students.
I was frustrated at the situation, wishing that I could have time with each individual, when I heard one girl who had been repeatedly asking questions say to her friend, “You know, the more I think about it, the more this is all messed up. I mean, that I can just kill a baby because I don’t want it.” She gestured at the sign I was holding that depicted a first-trimester abortion victim. “After all,” she said, elbowing her friend in the ribs and laughing, “if I don’t want you around I can’t just kill you.” Her friend rolled her eyes, laughing along. “You could,” she replied. “You could, but you shouldn’t.”
As I watched them walk away, I acknowledged a lesson learned. It may be disappointing to feel as if we are unable to truly ‘finish’ a conversation, but the important thing is that someone starts to think in the first place. The images of abortion victims show who the pre-born really are—human beings—and what abortion actually does to them. It’s the truth, and truth doesn’t need me to speak, it can speak for itself.