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Wom*n’s Collective members demonstrate in front of LifeChoice Sydney's booth, March 2, 2018. LifeChoice Australia / Facebook
Fr. Mark Hodges Fr. Mark Hodges

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Pro-abortion activists disrupt pro-life student booth with glitter bombs, condom balloons

Fr. Mark Hodges Fr. Mark Hodges

SYDNEY, Australia, March 14, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – University of Sydney pro-life students were harassed by a pro-abortion organization earlier this month as they manned an information booth during orientation week.

Wom*n’s Collective members broke a utility bucket, wrote abusive messages in chalk, released inflated condom balloons, yelled obscenities, and threw glitter bombs at the LifeChoice Sydney table in an effort to drive them away from the public sphere.

The pro-abortion group also staged a “lie-in” to steal attention from the pro-life students.  Among the angry heckles of Wom*n’s Collective members were calls for fellow students to “Tell LifeChoice they suck.”

“I think that ultimately a stall like this has no place in a university. This is supposed to be a place of, like, higher learning. Umm, they suck,” one woman shouted over a loudspeaker during the March 2 event. 

At one point, the pro-abortion activists broke into singing "abortions are so good."

Director of LifeChoice Australia Rebecca Gosper commented that of all places, University “should be the place for young people to think (or at least learn to think) critically.”

“Certainly, I tried to use my time as a student, to do just that, and to learn those very skills. But if we are never even given an opportunity to hear views which differ from our own, how can we form authentic views on the wider world?” she wrote in The Spectator Australia.

Gosper said her own personal experience with women suffering the devastating effects of abortion motivate her pro-life activity.  “I will not stand by and let more women experience this pain while the Wom*n’s Collective declare in chalk that ‘abortions save lives,’” she wrote in The Spectator Australia.

Orientation Week at Sydney University is supposed to be a time to meet new people and broaden one’s horizon, as well as select classes, but a concerted effort was made by some to limit student exposure to a pro-life world view.

For years, LifeChoice Sydney has been the target of hate from the Wom*n’s Collective.  One member admitted their goal is the revocation of LifeChoice’s registration as a student organization.  

“We’ve tried to get (LifeChoice) de-registered a lot of times, similar to German cockroaches, but for some f*ing reason they just keep going.”

Even infamous infanticide supporter Peter Singer, Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University and an Australian by birth, defends LifeChoice’s right to free speech on campus.

“I have been an advocate of legal abortion...but I am also a strong supporter of freedom of speech,” he said.  “A university, in particular, should be a place where ideas are able to be freely expressed. Students should be challenged to defend the ideas they take for granted.”

“For too long now universities have been heading down the trajectory of coddling students, rather than educating them,” Gosper said. “The very presence of groups like LifeChoice should be a corrective to this and should encourage students to think critically about serious issues in our society.”

“The behavior of the University of Sydney Wom*n’s Collective is completely contradictory to the core value of feminism: respect for women,” Gosper continued.  “By shutting down civil conversation, these women are not advocating for real choices for women.”

Apparently, freedom of speech and the confluence of ideas is becoming a thing of the past in some of the world’s premier institutions of higher education.  The Spectator’s Matthew Lesh openly questions if “freedom to think has been destroyed in our centers of learning.”

“Are our universities allowing the voicing of competing perspectives in the pursuit of knowledge and truth?” he asks.

An audit of college policies and actions by the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) found free speech on campus is under threat.  Some universities have allowed violent, intimidating protests against peaceful speakers, simply because of their views.  Some have decreed policies punishing words which cause hurt “feelings.”  

The audit found over 165 instances of administrative censorship.  It characterized 34 of Australia’s 42 universities “hostile to free speech.”  

“There has been more silencing of speech at the University of Sydney than any other university in the country,” Lesh reported.  “The University of Sydney was found to be the most hostile university to free speech in the IPA’s Free Speech on Campus Audit 2017.”

The bottom line for Gosper is her freedom as a student to express her pro-life convictions --a freedom she gladly affords to opponents as well.  

“Even though I do not agree with much of what the Wom*n’s Collective stand for, I still support their right to peacefully exist at Sydney University,” Gosper concluded.  “I just ask for the same respect in return for members of LifeChoice Sydney.”

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