How to change the world
The following are snippets of conversations from the Genocide Awareness Project’s international mission trip in Florida last month. These give glimpses of how ordinary people can reach out to wounded people in a twisted culture:
A man was looking in shock at the pictures of aborted babies and Nicole, a volunteer, asked if he had questions. He said, “No, no this enough; my eyes are opened now.”
A student walked past and exclaimed, “Those pictures! They’re so shocking!” He was overcome by the powerful impact of seeing shattered abortion victims.
Renee, a volunteer, asked a girl how she was doing today; the girl said “Successfully disturbed.” She was against abortion, she said, but the display had put it in a new light for her. She asked about how the abortion procedure worked, and her eyes were opened.
Alanna, CCBR’s outreach director, spoke to a girl who wasn’t sure if abortion should be legal or illegal. After they talked for a bit she said, “Looking at these pictures now, I’m really leaning more towards it being illegal.”
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Blaise, a volunteer, spoke to one guy with dred locks who looked like Bob Marley. “Why they all callin’ you gross?” he asked Blaise. Looking at the pictures, he said, “Man, I didn’t know it looked like that. That’s horrible.” One of his friends, standing with the pro-choice protestors, called over to him and asked what he was doing. “I’m getting’ educated, yo,” he responded. His friend then said, “Naw, you’re getting misinformed!” The student with Blaise then responded to his friend, “I’m keeping an open mind.” After speaking with him, knowing the truth prevails, Blaise encouraged the guy to go over and see what the abortion advocates had to say. When the guy went over there, one of the abortion advocates said, “It’s just a clump of cells” to which the guy Blaise spoke with responded, while pointing to the signs, “That’s a pretty organized clump of cells!”
One guy said that he and his girlfriend had had two abortions, including one only two weeks ago. He came up to our volunteer, Alice, quite hostile. He justified his child’s abortion by saying that he thinks in a society where some families or people can’t handle kids, abortion is required. Alice listened to him and then mentioned the option of adoption. A curtain lifted—he said, “You know, I never thought of that. That solves all the problems I talked about.” He and Alice read through an adoption pamphlet, and he told her that he was a bit sad as he realized he had been ignorant—but now was 100% for adoption. “You can’t change your past,” she told him, “but you can change your future.” The formerly-hostile student had become quite pensive and friendly. He said, “You know, you have a really cool vibe. I gave you bullets and a gun [with my poor arguments] and you didn’t even shoot me.” [I would agree with the student that Alice does have a really cool vibe, but she also has a really cool British accent and I think that helped endear her to many J].
Yvonne, a volunteer, spoke to one young man who told her, “I’m going to tell you that I’m an atheist, and this is the first time I’ve heard something that is explained scientifically. This makes sense.” First he was pro-choice—but he left reconsidering his position, and taken aback by the respect with which he was treated. He thanked us for taking the time to talk to him.
Alanna spoke with one man who didn’t believe the pre-born were human beings—and would get very upset when she used the word “kill.” However, after discussing it further he couldn’t deny that the word was accurate. At the end of their discussion, he signed up for the pro-life club so he, too, could do something about abortion.
Dozens of pro-lifers who thought abortion was permissible in the case of rape were swayed to become completely pro-life due to the pictures and simple analogies.
One angry girl approached Jenna, a volunteer, and said, “You people are sick. These images are fake.” Jenna replied, “Hypothetically, if these images aren’t fake, would you agree that abortion is a barbaric act that kills a human?” She responded, “Well, yes, but these aren’t real images.” Jenna then showed her the signed legal affidavit proving the authenticity of the imagery. After reading, the girl responded, “Alright, I guess abortion is a very bad choice.”
A few facts, some basic science, a pleasant disposition, a kind heart, a listening ear, and a Socratic approach—these are the ingredients to make fruitful dialogue on abortion. These encounters are just a few of many which prove true the words of Nelson Mandela: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”