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‘Secular Pro-Life’ launches incentive to raise awareness of non-religious pro-lifers

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Undoubtedly, conservative Christians largely constitute the pro-life movement in America. But too frequently the tendency is to assign this identity of “pro-life” solely to conservative Christians, when this is not at all the case. The perception that only conservative Christians are pro-life is a boon to the pro-abortion movement, which has developed the self-serving stereotype that the pro-life movement is not inclusive or diverse.

One group – Secular Pro-Life – is working to change that notion by drawing attention to the fact that there are over six million pro-life adults in the United States who, as non-religious individuals, do not fit the stereotype. In a recent blog post, Secular Pro-Life described the initiative – the Six Million Project – to raise awareness about pro-life adults who are non-religious:

The campaign features photographs of pro-life atheists, agnostics, and “nones” from across the nation.

“Every week, we get an email from someone to the effect of ‘I thought I was the only pro-life atheist!'” said Kelsey Hazzard, the president of Secular Pro-Life. “It gets lonely out there. Non-religious pro-lifers are not often acknowledged in the mainstream media. This creates a vicious cycle; people think they’re alone, which makes them less likely to speak out for life, which makes others more likely to think they’re alone.”

To break this cycle, Secular Pro-Life is running Facebook advertisements targeted to non-religious audiences, directing them to the Six Million Project website. The site encourages visitors to share their own photographs and to connect with like-minded people through Secular Pro-Life’s Facebook page.

“We want to organize as much of this six-million-member community as possible,” Hazzard added. “To be an effective pro-life advocate, you need a strong support system.”

According to the Guttmacher Institute, 27.5% of American abortion patients have no religion. “The best possible source of support for these women, the best chance they have to find an alternative to abortion, is a pro-life friend who shares their secular values,” said Hazzard. “This is a project that will save lives in the long term.”

If you’re a secular pro-lifer who would like to add your voice to the six million, visit Secular Pro-Life‘s Six Million project, and submit your one-in-6,000,000 photo to info@secularprolife.org.

  • Sashabill

    This is great, and we need to see more diverse involvement in the pro life movement. While conservative Protestants and Catholics shouldn’t have to keep their perspective “under wraps,” they do need to be more positive and pro-active in welcome other viewpoints into the pro life movement. I happen to be LDS (Mormon,) and I have experienced the hostility that sometimes comes from conservative “Christians” toward those pro-lifers with other perspectives, including other religious beliefs.

    I will gladly stand with liberals and Democrats, feminists, atheists or agnostics, gays and lesbians, or little green men from Mars in defending and affirming the right to life.

  • HD

    This is great! But as someone who is not religious and in the middle of the pro-life movement I have to say that the problem is not the media. It’s the pro-life movement itself. I’ve been to 100+ pro-life events and I am yet to go to one where religion isn’t brought up in some degree. It’s brought up openly in the speeches and conversation with the assumption that all of the pro-lifers in the room are of the same mind. And those individuals I know who are very active in the pro-life movement use God/the Church frequently as their argument in their personal relationships as well. It’s incredibly isolating and frankly it makes it harder for me to feel comfortable getting involved in the movement. I am passionate about pro-life issues but I’m tired of having the Bible or Pope frequently quoted at me. Our Constitution is not the Bible. Abortion is an issue of human rights and murder, that’s why I oppose it.

    • kap65

      I really appreciate your feedback. As the Exec Director of a pregnancy center with a specifically Christian emphasis (and being devoutly Catholic myself), I never think of whether or not non-religious people would attend our events. We do SO much through the churches (recruiting walkers, banquet table hosts). I have worked harder at incorporating non-religious arguments for life, including when talking to volunteers and donors who are Christian. I tell them that quoting the Bible and saying “God loves this little baby” to a client who is atheist could do more harm than good. …But even so, I need to think about what new supporters we may find if we change our approach a bit.

    • Hannah

      Agreed! I go to March for Life every year and it’s dominated by Catholic Dioceses, and they make it very clear they’re against abortion because God says so. But that’s not the way America works…we need a legitimate legal argument. I’m saying this as a steadfast Christian woman…even though I have my beliefs and there are definitely aspects of my faith that say abortion is wrong, that is NOT why I oppose it. I oppose it because murder is a violation of human rights, and abortion IS murder.

  • johno

    Good job!

  • Eric G.

    I think the only people who should be allowed to advocate abortion are those who received direct consequence of that decision… but all of those people are murdered before they get the chance to speak.

  • kap65

    Yes, I did…and I have mixed feelings. First, I would have NO problem marching for life with secularists in DC or any where else. And even though our local Walk for Life fund raiser is promoted primarily in churches (well, almost exclusively at this point) I have approached businesses and civic groups as well. Not much response so far.

    But here’s where I differ. I am a devout Catholic, and when I speak about a baby being saved from abortion or a woman choosing to leave an abusive relationship, or a teen mom going back to school and getting her diploma, I rejoice and give God the glory. Goodness, I give God the glory when I have a good, productive day. I have a disability which causes difficulties in walking. If I lose my balance, I cry out to Him, and when I recover, I thank Him. My faith is completely integrated into my very being. I cannot separate it.

    The pregnancy help ministry I direct is Christian…and all volunteers and staff and board must sign a statement of faith. I realize that is difficult for you to hear, but for many of us, it is simply who we are. In fact, it is part of our incorporation papers, so legally we recognized as a charitable AND religious organization. What is ironic is that before I came around, there were no Catholics. So some people freaked out a bit when I joined the board, let alone when I was hired as ED! Even those of us who believe in Jesus have difficulty agreeing on “how to share the gospel.” For what it is worth, I view “decisions for Christ” very differently than many on my team. I also see our primary goal as saving babies from abortion. Evangelization would come later.

    I do not see the board ever approving of non-Christian volunteers…which would be tough for you since there is no other PRC in the county. Part of my own heart would not want to go that route either. But ever since finding Secular Pro-Life, I wonder…

    I guess for those atheists who live in larger communities or in communities without current PRC’s, it might be good to start up a PRC that does not have a religious approach. Our PRC was started by church folks, so it should be no surprise it has a religious element. If a PRC is started by people of diverse faiths or no religious faith, it could use a different approach.

    I realize this may not help much. Please know that I do not wish to dismiss your concerns. Frankly, I am just not sure where to go with them at this point. I will continue pondering

  • Jon Red

    We should also start a group of “religious” pro-choicers.

    • marive

      A religion that promotes the sacrifice of human beings to their gods?Yes,there are a few…

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  • John Purdy

    I love this. An atheist can actually empathize with babies being tortured to death. So there doesn’t seem to be any excuse for these crimes.

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  • DebChris

    Whenever I engage in discussions on this issue, I am always asked if I am Catholic. The answer is yes. I no longer deny that it effect my position even if it is never the position I start with. I always begin with the Declaration of Independence. Without Life There is No Liberty.

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