Tips for Pro-Life Leaders

For more than four decades now, the primary response from pro-life leaders to the question, What about in cases of rape?, has been to try to diminish the instance of pregnancy by rape by saying, Its only 1%.  As weve seen from some recent high-profile Senate races and even testimony on pro-life bills in Congress, this response is insufficient and has been causing 100% pro-life legislators to stumble.  After all, its really not so rare with over 32,100+ rape-related pregnancies in the U.S. each year. So pro-life leaders MUST STOP diminishing and just defend!

This advice is intended for any pro-life leaders who may be asked questions about their position on abortion in cases of rape.  The advice is research-based from a recent 5-state study commissioned by Georgia Right to Life, Right to Life of Michigan, and Personhood USA, in which we could demonstrate that peoples opinion of this issue could be dramatically swayed within the one hour on-line interactive survey.   The most compelling response is to humanize the child by invoking the story of a woman conceived in rape or a woman who became pregnant by rape.  The most compelling argument is to appeal to our sense of justice that we dont punish innocent people for someone elses crime.  The worst response is to diminish.

The initial advice not surprisingly comes directly from those who have been in the position of having to respond to these questions regularly because they were conceived in rape and they share their stories publicly. We must always be prepared to give an answer. If you have further questions which were not addressed, please e-mail us and we’ll get you a reply.

Further Advice

They ask, “Isn’t it extreme . . . ?”

You reply, “I think it’s extreme to tell another living human being that they are garbage, that they don’t deserve to be living, and that they aren’t worthy of protection.”

And/or, “I challenge my opponent to look someone like _______ in the eye and tell her she should not have been protected – that by their standards, she should be dead right now, and everyone will see who the real extremist is. There are real people who are being targeted and devalued by our rhetoric, and they have as much worth as anyone else.”

They ask, “ . . . the rapist’s baby?”

You reply, “That child is not ‘the rapist’s baby,’ but her mother’s child. The majority of rape survivors choose to raise their children who were conceived in rape. After everything the rape victim has endured, what an insult to her to suggest that somehow her child’s primary identity is marked as ‘the rapist’s baby,’ and what an unfair stigma to attach to an innocent child.”

And/or: “I’m tired of these children being demonized like this. Women are capable of great love for their children and must be given more credit for this.”

They ask, “No exceptions?”

You reply, “I don’t think it’s right to discriminate against an innocent child. This is a civil rights issue, and these children are arguably some of the most demonized and marginalized members of our society, born or preborn. Our words, and our positions, will either speak value into the lives of our fellow Americans, or serve to further devalue these children for no fault of their own.”

They ask, “What about in cases of rape?”

You reply, “According to the U.S. Supreme Court, rapists don’t deserve the death penalty – not even child molesters, and that it’s cruel and unusual punishment to sentence them to death. I certainly don’t believe that an innocent child deserves the death penalty for the crimes of her father. Just as the death penalty can’t undo a rape, neither will an abortion.”

And/or: “Rape and abortion are wrong for the same reason they are both violent acts of aggression against another person. I care about rape victims, so I want to ensure that they are protected from the rapist, and not the innocent baby. More violence within her body is not the answer.”


And/or: “Rape victims need real help – to be protected by ensuring the rapist does not have any parental rights, to make sure the rape victim mother will be able to receive governmental aid, even if she is unable to name who the rapist is. Tragically, the rhetoric surrounding abortion has left the majority of rape victims mothers unprotected because too many seem to think that a real rape victim couldn’t possibly want her child, when this is simply untrue. I will work to protect rape victims, and their children.”

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