Friday, February 12, 2010

The Harassment of a Smiling Baby

The pro-life club at the University of Victoria that is in danger of losing its status over accusations of harassment. What form of "harassment"?

Following people around? Stalking them? Vandalizing their doors? Shouting through bullhorns? Chanting loudly?

No. Putting up posters.

Some students are offended by the posters the group put up. Posters that you can choose to look at or not. One poster shows a picture of a smiling baby. The other shows a picture of a man in a wheelchair.

For those of you who want to judge for yourself, here are the offending posters, which are produced by Feminists for Life:

Is this the face of the enemy?

The copy reads:

Abortion advocates pit women against our children.
But lack of emotional or financial support is the real enemy.
Feminists for Life believes that women should not feel forced to sacrifice our children for an education or a career.
If you would like to work on securing non-violent choices for women or need information on pregnancy resources, please contact us.
Refuse to Choose * Women Deserve Better

Would you say that to my face?

The copy reads:

Would you say that to my face?
Would you tell me that I never should have been born?
That is the message sent when people talk about aborting "gross fetal anomalies."
People who overcome adversity inspire, challenge, and enrich our world.
It's time to question abortion

First of all, kudos to the BC Civil Liberties Association for standing up for the pro-life students, even though they disagree with the content of the speech.

Now, let's look at the opponents of the posters. People have signed a petition to state how "harassed" they are by posters. Not that the posters are being put in their mailboxes or taped to their doors or held up in their faces. That they're merely posted on campus at all. And the UVIC Students Society is taking the side of the "I have a right to never see anything that might potentially offend me. Like a picture of a smiling baby or some dude in a wheelchair."

Tara Paterson of "Students for Choice" complains, "I think the posters are absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive, particularly for female students on campus."

A picture of a smiling baby. -- "Absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive".

A picture of a man in a wheelchair. -- "Absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive."

"Question abortion." -- "Absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive".

(Note that the poster doesn't say "Stop abortion" or "Ban abortion" or "Fight abortion" or "Reject abortion". Just "Question abortion".)

Being challenged to re-examine your beliefs on a college campus. -- "Absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive".

A passing female student is asked if she finds the baby poster offensive. She hesitates while framing her response:

I believe -- in the right to choose. And I understand that these that these women want to produce an alternative. But -- Choice -- is -- what this is about.

Very interesting, what she says. "These women want to produce an alternative" to what? To choice? Isn't another alternative MORE choice? Unless by "choice" you mean ONE PARTICULAR CHOICE. But she can't bring herself to say that. She can't bring herself to say that what's offensive is the idea that there are, or even could be, choices other than abortion.

And THAT is the harassment. To even raise the possibility that there are, or at least could or should be, choices other than abortion.

And according to the Students Society, according to "Students for Choice", to so much as suggest that people consider the merest possibility of some women making a choice that isn't abortion constitutes "absolutely manipulative and extremely offensive" "harassment".

Oh, they're for choice all right. To think and act exactly as they do.

HT: Jill Stanek and Blue Wave Canada.


Uncle Mike said...

Feminazism can't stand noncomformity. It is also in love with death.

Sarah said...

Isn't it sad that with all the liberties women in the West have today we are still so often guilty of not thinking for ourselves? I wonder if the young women in the video who were asked about the posters had ever really thought about abortion or if they are just spitting out "my right to choose" rhetoric. Yes, prolifers are often guilty of the same, of not really wrestling with what it means to advocate for the unborn, but to convince yourself you are free when really you are in bondage to someone else's thinking is a sad, sad thing. Anyway, thanks for the post and I enjoyed perusing the rest of your blog :)

Let's open doors. Explore said...

Like I've said many times before - until the pro-life movement can find something tangible to hold - something beyond an argument - we really have nothing against this clandestine movement. It's a shame. Great post. Thanks for sharing....

Brian W. said...

Public university? Freedom of expression?

It's a sad day at a public university when a student group because it was "offended" and "felt manipulated" should shut down a chartered student group.

Can't pro-choicers on campus take the intellectual heat? Perhaps 1984has been banned from the reading list at this university.

The pro-life students and the BCCLA should sue the Student Society,pro-life Canadians should write the students a check.

Oppresion and gag orders are the mother of a spreading movement.

Be encouraged and fear not!

Ms. Kathleen said...

Freedom of speech - freedom of choice to believe what you want - are being taken away here. I find it almost funny that a freedom of choice group is taking away the freedom of choice for all students by banning alternative views!

I am a Feminist for Life- Have been for many, many years. I just find this ridiculous really. Thanks for posting and making more people aware that the fight is still on to save lives.

Cynthia said...

If they want to shut down the pro-life group, then they need to shut down the pro-choice group. The university should also fine them for any "offensive" pro-choice posters they may have put up on campus.
I am willing to bet the "30" or so people that signed this petition are narrow-minded pro-choice advocates who obviously cannot handle any point of view but their own. These ladies are the sort that want to burn books that may contain ideas offensive to them. They are just as bad as those crazy people that want to ban Harry Potter or any other book. To me, this seems to be about denying knowledge. Opponents of these posters propagate the idea that women cannot possibly think for themselves, and I must disagree.
That young lady was right. It IS about choice, non-violent alternative choices.

Anonymous said...

The old double standard game. I can manipulate, but you can't.

Would you allow me to translate your post into Spanish for my own blog?


Christina Dunigan said...

Certainly, burbu. Translate away! Just remember that the illustrations may not be altered in any way to be used; Feminists for Life requires that they be reproduced in full as-is.

Anonymous said...

Of course!! I will!! I will inform you as soon as I post it. Thanks!

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