Featured Image
84-year-old Joan Jacobson, who was shot while canvassing against abortion in Michigan.Mary Margaret Olohan / Twitter

(LifeSiteNews) – An 84-year-old volunteer shot while canvassing in Michigan against a radical pro-abortion initiative won a major award from a national pro-life group. 

Joan Jacobson won the “Person of the Year” award from the Society of St. Sebastian for her bravery after being shot by 74-year-old Richard Harvey, who then described Jacobson to a 911 dispatcher as a “right-wing nut.”

Harvey faces criminal charges.

The Society of St. Sebastian announced: 

While volunteering to pass out literature on voting “no” on proposition 3 for Right to Life of Michigan, Mrs. Jacobson was shot. While passing out literature on a ballot initiative may not be considered the tradition form of lobbying, it is indeed a form of lobbying. Mrs. Jacobson was lobbying the people of Michigan to vote against this pro-abortion amendment. During her time canvassing and speaking with people about the ballot initiative she went to speak with the people on a property [who] were not pro-life. Sadly, they were so enmeshed within the Culture of Death that they not only took offense to her message of Life, but also shot her. 

Right to Life of Michigan thanked its volunteer, in a statement provided to the Society of St. Sebastian. 

“We applaud Joan for the many years she put into advocating for the unborn,” the board stated. “We are grateful for her dedication and bravery in standing against the pro-abortion advances in Michigan.” 

READ: Man who shot 84-year-old pro-life woman set to face trial in Michigan

The organization’s spokesperson previously told LifeSiteNews that Jacobson “has been volunteering with pro-life stuff for a very long time.” Jacobson is also active with the Heritage Action for America’s Sentinel activism training program.

Joe Kral, president of the Society of St. Sebastian, added similar words of praise. 

“Joan clearly has the fortitude of St. Sebastian. She not only faced the Culture of Death through her pro-life advocacy, but faced the violence the it brings,” Kral stated. “She is a true witness to the Culture of Life and an awesome advocate for the unborn.” 

The Society of St. Sebastian is a national pro-life research group that brings together “Catholic scholars and professionals” to promote a “Culture of Life,” according to its website. Affiliated members and fellows include Catholic University of America professor Michael New, Americans United for Life attorney Katie Glenn, and Texas Alliance for Life Executive Director Joe Pojman.

Increase in pro-abortion violence

The shooting of Jacobson is part of a larger problem of violence from pro-abortion activists that has picked up steam since the Dobbs v. Jackson decision that reversed Roe v. Wade was leaked in May 2022.

Since then, pro-abortion activists have protested outside of the homes of Supreme Court justices, in violation of federal law, and one even traveled from California with the clear purpose of killing Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Pro-life churches, groups, and pregnancy resource centers have faced firebombings, vandalism, and other attacks, with little to no pushback from the White House and leading Democrats.

Just this last Saturday, violent pro-abortion group Jane’s Revenge, which has boasted about its criminal activity, attacked the garage door and driveway of a Pregnancy Aid Detroit board member’s home in Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan. Criminals also vandalized the Pregnancy Aid center that morning.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration and Attorney General Merrick Garland continue to largely ignore the issue, instead sending federal agents after peaceful pro-lifers, such as Mark Houck and Paul Vaughn.

This despite an estimate from the current FBI director that 70% of abortion-related violence after the reversal of Roe in June has targeted pro-life centers and churches.