December 09, 2007

in which hell freezes over...

I never thought I would hear myself saying this...but, I like what Harvard Right to Life is doing this year. I'm about as pro-choice as they come. I've worked at Planned Parenthood and countered conservative rhetoric on a sex-ed advisory committee, so this is in no way an endorsement of anti-choice politics. That being said, HRL has made some noteworthy changes this year.

Many of you may remember HRL's controversial Elena campaign from a couple years ago. They featured a fetus named Elena who wanted to be a racecar driver when she grew up. (Assuming she would get to grow up without evil, heartless liberals murdering her first.) They've taken a much different approach this year, and I find it commendable.

I don't remember the exact text from any of this year's posters (if anyone does, please comment!) but they are much less about making women feel guilty about having abortions and much more about making the Harvard campus friendlier to women who choose to not have abortions. One poster pointed out that UHS health insurance covers birth control and abortions, but not parenting classes. Another took issue with the fact that options for students with children are limited. (In terms of childcare, housing, etc.) Valid points!

I guess my point in making this post is to say that pro-choice means just that: pro-choice. I am all for a woman's right to make decisions about her own body, and that should include the decision to have a baby. Maybe this is something that we could all agree on?

A note to conservatives: Campaigns based on shock and guilt have no effect except to shock people and make them feel guilty. Abortion is a controversial enough topic that we've all pretty much made up our minds. And - whatever our opinions - they are unlikely to be swayed by a couple posters. Campaigns based on fact and concrete calls for change? Much more effective.


Anonymous said...

Absolutely - I actually had a huge convo with an off-campus friend about this a few weeks ago - I was so torn! A look at their website shows that while their ad campaign has changed, their ideology has not, but I do appreciate the spin on the topic that the ads have given me. I really like the idea of, rather than pro-life, RIGHT to life. Unfortunately up until this year they've taken that to be the fetus's life, but I like to think that now they mean the socially and economically non-constricted right for a pregnant woman to choose life . hurrah!


icarus said...

Campaigns based on shock and guilt have no effect except to shock people and make them feel guilty.

well put.

teacozy said...

w00t! I agree! those posters are mos. def. one iteration of a pro-choice stance, imho. :D