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National Campus Life Network > Blog > Articles by: YPY Info Officer

Youth Protecting Youth: Exposing the Truth on Campus

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

by Kamilah Thorpe
Sometimes the truth is hard to take. Everyone knows that. The need to accept reality for what it is is part of our human existence. We have to take the rainy days for what they are and when the number on our weight scale is not what we wish it was, we just have to deal with it. But what happens when we deny reality? What happens when someone tries to hide the truth? What happens when the voices of those trying to expose the realities of violence and injustice are forcibly silenced? Many people are offended and disgusted by the horrible images of aborted fetuses that YPY members have chosen to expose to the public. It is because of this that the University of Victoria has taken many measures to censor YPY.
 I myself am horrified and disgusted by the images and will be the last person to deny that they can be emotionally traumatizing. But they are true. I look forward to the day when people will remember those pictures as something terrible that used to happen in our country. But today it is still happening. If we keep denying the truth we will never change and we will never heal. That is why YPY members have always fought, and will continue to fight, for their right to freedom of expression at UVic. It is silly to hide from a weight scale. But it is a serious problem when we hide from the injustice and violence that takes place in our country every day.

Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: Canadians’ Awareness of Abortion Law

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

 

 

Some time ago, the We Need A Law campaign released this graphic showing the results of a survey. Canadians were asked “As far as you know, when can an abortion be performed in Canada?” Only 8% answered correctly: abortion can be legally performed in Canada “any time up to 9 months.” Babies aren’t recognized by the law until they proceed entirely from the birth canal, actually; there is no abortion law in Canada. And judging from a recent local firsthand account, this lack of regulation does indeed result in relatively late abortions, right here in Victoria.

WeNeedALawGraphic

Why might we find abortions that happen later in pregnancy more distasteful? We might expect the results of earlier abortions to be less graphic and recognizable to view because the unborn baby is less developed. On some level, this is true. However, it’s worth noting that by 3-4 weeks, the baby’s brain, spinal cord and heartbeat are present, and the woman might not even know she is pregnant yet.

But when we forget that each unborn baby is human and start focusing on his or her level of development, we begin to lose our respect for all human life. With that said, we can still use the huge gap between what Canadians believe about abortion law and statistics and the reality as a starting point for conversation. When we bring an important and controversial issue to light, it’s helpful to establish common ground with those who we hope to educate. And with so few Canadians well-informed about these issues, there’s plenty of opportunity for dialogue.


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: Year in Review: 2012-2013

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

At the beginning of this school year, we talked about what was new with YPY. So what have we accomplished since then? As with all pro-life activism that engages people, the results of our work can’t fully be determined or quantified. Who knows how many students reconsidered their position on abortion after reading a pamphlet, seeing a picture, or talking with someone who treated them with respect? But it can be useful to review quantifiable activities, so here’s this year in review:

Activities

Club members gave about 25 man/woman-hours of “Choice” Chain and pamphleting, handing out over 2700 pamphlets. They chalked 20 chalkboards for about 20 weeks during the semesters. The club added more than 30 new people to the regular email list, and our president gave four presentations to classes. We held three apologetics workshops which were attended by all active members at one point or another.

Events

Events included two successful open houses with a total of about 30 curious students attending and many good conversations. Over 130 bought tickets for the Gala fundraiser. The club sent a representative to the NCLN (National Campus Life Network) symposium in Toronto. YPY’s annual $1000 bursary was provided to a young mother from Campbell River. The club showed the documentary “It’s a Girl,” which addresses the issue of gendercide.

Online

We also held a blog-writing workshop to equip our members to contribute to the blog. We published 12 (now 13) blog articles since September 2012. The blog received over 5000 views in this time, making for a total of over 28,000 views. 237 facebook users “like” our page and if every one of them posted an article, over 92,000 people could see it.

In conclusion, we’d like to thank everyone who’s contributed to this year’s success, especially the executive members. We would love to have you join YPY in our life-saving efforts. With your help, next year will be even better.


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: Abortion Firsthand

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

A few women have told me that they had abortions. When that happens I try to listen compassionately to their stories, which are tragically so common. But as soon as we began the display on that Saturday, I got the chance to learn from someone with a different kind of experience.

“Choice” Chain is a pro-life activism activity that involves engaging passersby in dialogue while holding photographs that show what abortion does to a baby. I participate in Choice Chain in hopes that fewer abortions will happen as a result. Sometimes people assume that condemning women who have had abortions is the goal, but it’s not at all. Showing the pictures is an effective way to spread the life-saving truth: abortion kills a human being. I’ve seen tons of positive interactions and changed minds; I’ve even met a child who was saved from abortion when his mother saw the signs. But during “Choice” Chain a few weeks ago, it was my turn to learn about abortion.

At first I assumed the man who approached me was being rude. He pointed to the picture of the aborted fetus: “I’ve cut up thousands of those.” But I sensed a sincerity that belied his words. “What do you mean?” I asked. He is a pathologist at Victoria General Hospital. He had indeed cut pieces from thousands of aborted babies for samples. I didn’t ask his name, and I don’t think he would’ve given it. He thought we might be interested to hear what he had to say because we’re not likely to get such information otherwise. He was right. I’ve known for a while that approximately 300 abortions happen every day in Canada but I’d never heard about it firsthand from someone who deals with the aftermath.

“Some are quite a bit older than that” he said, pointing to a sign showing an 8-week old aborted fetus. He had obtained tissue from thousands of dead babies every year, some of which were at least as old as the 2nd-trimester neonatal preemies that, instead of being aborted, were treated with delicate care. He described gently and carefully obtaining blood from preemies that could just as easily have been aborted, sampled and thrown in the trash. He said “I used to be more on the pro-choice side, but seeing so many of these makes you think about it.” When you take samples from aborted fetuses you can see the body parts. It makes you think twice “when someone drops a jar and the abortion falls on the floor and blood goes everywhere and everybody can see what it is.” [this is a graphic video showing "what it is"]

The grim realities this man described don’t belong to the Kermit Gosnell abortion clinic murder trial, a story that is presently horrifying many on both sides of the issue. They belong to the local hospital. They describe things that happen regularly.

The pathologist thought we’d be interested to know just who gets abortions. Apparently young women roughly 17-20 are most common. Situations surrounding abortion are often complicated, but pro-lifers hold that every innocent death is tragic. So in that sense, the age of the woman doesn’t make a difference. But he went on: Women from about 20 to 35 get relatively few abortions. Instead, the second most common group is women of about 35 and up. That was surprising. He suggested they’d had enough kids and didn’t want larger families, or they didn’t want the higher risk of complications associated with pregnancies near the end of childbearing years.

He really didn’t like how “anybody can get an abortion for any reason” but he didn’t say he was pro-life. He was adamant to discuss it with “ideology aside.” He didn’t get behind religious or other “ideological” oppositions to abortion. Instead he told me that he just wants people to know the truth. I should’ve pointed out that many of us who call ourselves “pro-life” have the same straightforward, untwisted aim.

He said that everyone is sent down to Victoria to get abortions; none are performed up-island. He attributed this to pro-life activism in some communities on Vancouver Island. I’m not sure if that’s common knowledge or not but I hope this is encouraging to those activists. He also noted that whenever a medical study comes out that is not in favour of abortion, even in the interest of the health of the mother, it is shouted down. “Ideology aside” again, he was frustrated that, as a medical person, you can’t even discuss these possibilities.

He thanked us for being out on the street and said that people need to see the pictures. I offered him a business card for “Silent No More,” thinking that their healing mission might help him. He said he didn’t need it – “I’m fine.” Despite his confidence, I think he wished, with some bitterness, that everyone knew what he did for a living. He seemed easygoing, confident and friendly. Looking back now I wonder why he opened our conversation so candidly: “I’ve cut up thousands of those.” What do you say to that? I first thought he was trying to get a rise out of me so I was calm. But maybe outrage would have been better – maybe outrage would have validated his experience. Because abortion is truly outrageous, and this man had seen the results firsthand.


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: Firsthand Account of the Results of Abortion

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

“Choice” Chain is a pro-life activism activity that involves engaging passersby in dialogue while holding photographs that show what abortion does to a baby. I participate in Choice Chain in hopes that fewer abortions will happen as a result. Sometimes people assume that condemning women who have had abortions is the goal, but it’s not at all. Showing the pictures is an effective way to spread the life-saving truth: abortion kills a human being. I’ve seen tons of positive interactions and changed minds; I’ve even met a child who was saved from abortion when his mother saw the signs.

But during “Choice” Chain a few weeks ago, it was my turn to learn about abortion. A few women have told me that they had abortions. When that happens I try to listen compassionately to their stories, which are tragically so common. But as soon as we began the display on that Saturday, I got the chance to learn from someone with a different kind of experience.

At first I assumed the man who approached me was being rude. He pointed to the picture of the aborted fetus: “I’ve cut up thousands of those.” But I sensed a sincerity that belied his words. “What do you mean?” I asked. He is a pathologist at Victoria General Hospital. He had indeed cut pieces from thousands of aborted babies for samples. I didn’t ask his name, and I don’t think he would’ve given it. He thought we might be interested to hear what he had to say because we’re not likely to get such information otherwise. He was right. I’ve known for a while that approximately 300 abortions happen every day in Canada but I’d never heard about it firsthand from someone who deals with the aftermath.

“Some are quite a bit older than that” he said, pointing to a sign showing an 8-week old aborted fetus. He had obtained tissue from thousands of dead babies every year, some of which were at least as old as the 2nd-trimester neonatal preemies that, instead of being aborted, were treated with delicate care. He described gently and carefully obtaining blood from preemies that could just as easily have been aborted, sampled and thrown in the trash. He said “I used to be more on the pro-choice side, but seeing so many of these makes you think about it.” When you take samples from aborted fetuses you can see the body parts. It makes you think twice “when someone drops a jar and the abortion falls on the floor and blood goes everywhere and everybody can see what it is.” [this is a graphic video showing "what it is"]

He thought we’d be interested to know just who gets abortions. In one sense, the age of the woman doesn’t matter; situations surrounding abortions are often complicated, but every innocent death is tragic. Apparently it’s most common for young women to have abortions. Not surprising. But then women from 20 to about 35 don’t get many. The 2nd most common group is women of about 35 and up. That was surprising. He suggested they’d had enough kids and didn’t want larger families, or they didn’t want the higher risk of complications associated with pregnancies near the end of childbearing years.

He really didn’t like how “just anybody can get an abortion for any reason” but he didn’t say he was pro-life. He was adamant to discuss it with “ideology aside.” He didn’t get behind religious or other “ideological” oppositions to abortion. Instead he told me that he just wants people to know the truth. I should’ve pointed out that many of us who call ourselves “pro-life” have the same straightforward, untwisted aim.

He said that everyone is sent down to Victoria to get abortions; none are performed up-island. He attributed this to pro-life activism in some communities on Vancouver Island. I’m not sure if that’s common knowledge or not but I hope this is encouraging to those activists. He also noted that whenever a medical study comes out that is not in favour of abortion, even in the interest of the health of the mother, it is shouted down. “Ideology aside” again, he was frustrated that, as a medical person, you can’t even discuss these possibilities.

He thanked us for being out on the street and said that people need to see the pictures. I offered him a business card for “Silent No More,” thinking that their healing mission might help him. He said he didn’t need it – “I’m fine.” Despite his confidence, I think he wished, with some bitterness, that everyone knew what he did for a living. He seemed easygoing, confident and friendly. Looking back now I wonder why he opened our conversation so candidly: “I’ve cut up thousands of those.” What do you say to that? I first thought he was trying to get a rise out of me so I was calm. But maybe outrage would have been better – maybe outrage would have validated his experience. Because abortion is truly outrageous, and this man knew it firsthand.


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: “It’s a Girl”

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

 

 

 

Evan Grae Davis has shot documentaries about human rights abuses from Africa to the Amazon. He didn’t initially set out to make a film about gendercide; he and his crew were travelling throughout India looking to shoot a documentary on human trafficking. “Nothing prepared us for what we discovered,” he says. 

 

In India, China and many other parts of the world today, girls are killed, aborted and abandoned simply because they are girls. The United Nations estimates as many as 200 million girls are missing in the world today because of this so-called “gendercide”.

 

Girls who survive infancy are often subject to neglect, and many grow up to face extreme violence and even death at the hands of their own husbands or other family members.

 

Get informed about this compelling issue and join YPY for the UVic showing of “It’s a Girl” on Wednesday, March 27th in MacLaurin D288. Admission is free.

Facebook Event

 

http://www.itsagirlmovie.com/


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.

Youth Protecting Youth: Left Outside the City Walls

This post was written for Youth Protecting Youth by YPY Info Officer. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

Last year I took a class on Roman history and I was recalling it recently when I realized something specific that our present-day society has in common with theirs. The Romans were very practical. We all know how good they were at building amazing roads and aqueducts all throughout Europe. However, something that struck me recently was that this pragmatic way of dealing with problems also extended into the family structure. The Roman household, without going into detail, was basically headed by a male member—usually the father or eldest brother—and everyone else in the family and household was in a sense property of the paterfamilias. Everyone in the household had a value, and that value was decided ultimately by the head of the household. Value could be entirely monetary, as in the case of slaves. The value of the wife and children were calculable as well to a certain extent, based on their usefulness and their potential to serve the household.

I recently made the connection that this pragmatic way that the Romans viewed the value of people is very similar to the way in which our society often values people. A child in the womb is considered valuable only if he or she is wanted by his or her parents.

The Romans very often exposed their infants by leaving them outside the city walls if they did not want them, for whatever reason—deformity, poverty, illegitimacy…is this much different from a pro-abortion mentality that ends the life of unwanted children for pragmatic reasons?

I would argue that very few Romans exposed their infants out of hatred for them—it was done rather because they were not needed or wanted for pragmatic reasons.

I acknowledge that mothers do not desire abortion. They do not seek it out of hatred for their child but rather because the circumstances they are in have driven them to believe that abortion is their only option.  Mothers and fathers who are faced with an unplanned pregnancy can face real obstacles such as lack of means, complication of lifestyle, and discomfort—obstacles that our society needs to acknowledge and address.

The motives for infanticide on the part of the Romans and the common motives for abortion today are very similar. I would hope that we have progressed in our understanding of problem solving since then. I would hope that we will see that a society which discards its unwanted members for pragmatic reasons is ultimately a cruel one;  children are valuable because they are children and not because of pragmatic reasons.

Kamilah Thorpe

YPY Club Member


Read the comments at the Youth Protecting Youth website.