When I am doing pro-life activism, I frequently think of the quote by Maya Angelou, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” When my colleagues and myself have conversations with people each day about abortion, there are two things we know will stay with each person that we speak with: how we made them feel as we talked with them, and the images of the crushed bodies of pre-born children that we show.
When you do CCBR’s internship, you have the opportunity to have unforgettable conversations with people on the streets. I wish I could say that all of the conversations I’ve had saw peoples’ opinion on the issue of abortion at least shift towards the pro-life position. Even though I’ve had a lot of those conversations, that’s not always the case.
A few weeks ago, while doing activism, I spoke with Travis. When I asked him what he thought about abortion, he told me that he was a relativist and that “everyone must live by their own truth.” Several questions later he still stuck to the same tune.
I've found that it's quite simple to ask questions that disprove someone's belief in relativism, often starting with: "Is it okay for someone to just punch somebody else?" or "Can I take your backpack and call it my own?" These questions can often reveal that people do believe in limits to ‘one's own truth.’
I felt like I was hitting a wall in my conversation with Danny at the Abortion Awareness Project. We had looked at pictures of aborted children, and we had discussed human rights and the difficult circumstances surrounding pregnancy. He would agree with my reasoning, and he even told me, “You’re really good at getting your point across.” Despite that, he kept reverting to his pro-choice position. If he understood the logic of the pro-life position, why wasn’t he convinced by it?