“I look at these pictures and think of my sister I’ll never get to meet.”
These words, uttered between sobs by a student named Allie* at University of Florida not only indicated a mind being changed but also ripped the façade off of rhetoric peddled by abortion advocates on Day Three of Created Equal’s Justice Ride.
Upon encountering Justice Rider Audrey, Allie had not only initially identified as “pro-choice” but referenced women she knew who’d had abortions. “That was great for them. I’m glad they had the choice,” she said.
Gently, Audrey asked, “Your friends, do they regret their abortion?”
“Of course. There is always going to be some regret. I’m just happy they had the choice.”
In spite of the confidence of her words, tears suddenly began to well in her eyes. Audrey knew it was time for a personal connection.
“Can I give you a hug?”
Allie agreed. As the hug ended, so, too, did her defense of abortion.
“Do you mind me asking who close to you had an abortion?”
Crying, she barely managed to say, “My mom.” Averting her gaze from a picture of a twenty-week-aborted baby, she confessed that she sees her sister in the signs.
Audrey acknowledged Allie’s pain, told her she was sorry, and the two hugged again for a long time as Allie began to sob uncontrollably.
Afterward, Audrey asked, “What do you think about abortion now?”
“You brought up something that I have avoided for so long and held inside,” she replied. “I understand and agree with you that it’s a human.”
After watching their interaction end in prayer, I soon noticed something curious not so far from where they’d been standing. On the face of a 15-week-aborted baby on one of our signs, an abortion advocate had affixed a sticker reading, “This oppresses women.”
I was struck by the individual’s decision to put their message on the face of a dead baby, who very well could have been female—for not only does abortion oppress the youngest of women, it butchers them.
Further, though, I was struck by the contrast between the abortion advocate’s intended message and the story Allie had just shared. The abortion in her family had not been liberty. Rather it had forged chains of guilt and hidden pain which would not even be acknowledged until the abortion victim’s sister years later encountered a Justice Rider on her campus.
Justice Riders don’t oppress women. We point them toward the One who can set them free.
We ride for freedom. We ride for equality. We ride for all humans.