On the campus of the University of Mary Washington there is a campaign to remove advertisements for local Crisis Pregnancy Centers on the basis that these advertisements are “deceiving women.”
Members of the pro-choice club on campus have placed neatly laminated flyers on every table in the campus dining hall and have been going door-to-door as well as around campus asking students to sign a petition requesting the school to put a disclaimer on the advertisements of the Crisis Pregnancy Centers.
Their concerns are that the advertisements offering help for women who are in a crisis pregnancy are misleading, making women believe that they are going to an abortion clinic. They are outraged that these women who are looking for an abortion might accidentally end up in a place where alternatives to abortion are encouraged.
It might just be me, but if you are “pro-choice” doesn’t that mean that a place that offers choices would be ideal? What I don’t understand is why these people, who claim to defend freedom of choice and freedom of speech, are themselves attacking people who are offering women choices and are repressing the freedom of speech.
If abortion clinics are free to advertise on campus, why should places that offer legitimate options other than abortion be banned? Pro-choice activists argue that women are intelligent beings, and that they should be trusted to make the right decision for themselves. If they really believe this, why are they so worried that these intelligent women might be misled by these advertisements? God forbid women consider any option other than abortion.
Crisis pregnancy centers give women facts about abortion that women need in order to make an informed decision. They offer these women help, no matter what decision they make. They offer them options by giving them the help they might need to support their child, if they decide to keep him, or provide them with adoptive services if they decide to have their child and give him up for adoption. They offer friendship and counseling in addition to service.
If these people were truly “pro-choice” and “pro-women,” then they would be enthusiastically in favor of providing intelligent young women with the kind of help and information that they need to make the right decision for them, rather then vehemently trying to keep this valuable resource a secret.
Bridget Balch is a freshman.