Pro-life law student fears for her grades after speaking out
COLUMBUS, Ohio, December 1, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Madison Gesiotto, the Ohio State pro-life law student who in vain sought protection from her school after her article in the Washington Times on abortions in black America triggered a threat, now fears that her outspokenness will hurt her grades.
"I absolutely fear for my grades moving forward," she told LifeSiteNews. "While I am lucky enough to have some very supportive professors this semester, I am afraid moving forward that professors at Moritz will treat me the same way that I was treated in the meeting with the three deans."
Gesiotto, 23, received a threatening Facebook comment after writing an op-ed for the Washington Times calling abortion "The Number One Killer of Black Americans." In it, she claimed that the abortion industry targets black women, who suffer from a disproportionate share of the country's abortions.
When she went to the dean of Moritz Law School for protection, he and two other senior law professors subjected her to over an hour of criticism – both of her arguments, which they deemed insufficiently sensitive to conditions in black America, and her writing abilities. They proposed she participate in a study session with her critics as a way of reducing the threat.
Now Gesiotto is reconsidering her future course selections, worried that the academics who roasted instead of rescuing her will dock her for her political incorrectness. "I planned on taking classes with some of the deans in the meeting. Moving forward, I feel that this may not be possible."
Since the encounter, Gesiotto told LifeSiteNews, she has been targeted with many accusations of racism. She has also received support from across the U.S. and expressions of sympathy from those who have experienced similar attacks.
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"Many students from OSU as well as other universities have been posting negative comments and labeling me as 'racist,' she said. "I am offended at every possible level that someone would draw a conclusion that I'm racist when I was simply attempting to bring social awareness to an important issue in today's society."
She cited a Twitter sequence in which a student named Jordan Uhl tweeted, "If @madisongesiotto is so concerned with black fetuses and ultimately black lives…why isn't she marching w/ #BlackLivesMatter?" He then answered his own query: "Oh that's right, racist republicans stop caring at birth."
But Gesiotto highlighted a supportive tweet from classmate Kristen Campbell, saying, "[F]rom a fellow 2L (second year Law student) who was attacked online last year for speaking about the same issues, keep fighting girl, I'm with you."
The student newspaper The Lantern has remained silent, though it did run a long attack on Gesiotto's Times piece from the Black Law Students Association, attempting to refute her thesis with official numbers indicating that "the leading causes of death in black Americans are heart disease, cancer and stroke." The rebuttal did not include abortions among the official numbers it cited.
Gesiotto sees the reaction of both faculty and students to her as exemplifying a concerted campaign "by the left to silence free speech on college campuses nationwide. Bullying has become a principal strategy in the left's campaign to silence conservative beliefs."
Gesiotto, a former Miss Ohio, notes that she received far greater respect for her opinions as a competitor in beauty pageants than she has at U Ohio.