Communicating the Prolife Message, and a 12-Year-Old Shows How It's Done
Here's a great video well worth watching that one of you blog readers let me know about.
Lia, 12 years old, prepared and delivered a prolife speech for her 7th grade class.
Following the video I share some thoughts on how to best communicate the prolife message.
Here are some suggestions about sharing the prolife message:
1. Tailor your presentation to your audience so that you’re speaking to them, not to yourself.
Realize the vested interests, denial and rationalization surrounding this issue.
Realize the average person’s saturation and indoctrination with media propaganda.
2. Do your homework. The other position can afford to be ignorant of the facts. You can’t. (The other position is dependent on diverting attention from the central facts; yours is dependent on drawing attention to them. To do so, you must know what you’re talking about.)
3. Present the facts logically, clearly, and succinctly, citing credible sources (secular whenever possible).
4. Use terms they’re familiar with, not prolife buzzwords.
5. Appeal to their curiosity and open-mindedness to hear a suppressed and politically incorrect viewpoint. (Prochoice is the status quo, establishment position. Prolife is the radical, counterculture position.)
6. Surprise your audience. Don’t fit the antiabortion stereotype.
“Actually, I’m prochoice. And you’re not.” (“I’m prochoice about jobs, clothes, cars, schools, seat belts, smoking, etc. You’re antichoice about rape, kidnapping, assault, theft, and child molesting. Aren’t you?”)
“I don’t believe in unwanted children.” (“I just believe the solution is wanting them, not killing them.”)
“I’m committed to women’s rights.” (“Like Susan B. Anthony and other pioneer feminists, I believe abortion is harmful and demeaning to women. In fact, abortion has become the primary method across the globe of eliminating unwanted females.”) “Abortion is a means for irresponsible men to exploit women, using them sexually, then leaving them alone with the devastating physical and psychological consequences.”
7. Be rational and calm. When you’re right, there’s no need to be defensive. Give the facts and let the listener develop her own emotions based on them. (Don’t overwhelm people with your emotions. Don’t go ballistic in a debate, and nine out of ten times the other side will. People who are listening will see which side is angry and irrational and which is calm and logical.)
8. Be prepared for straw man and ad hominem arguments, but don’t use them yourself. When the facts aren’t on their side, people have nothing left to do but distort issues and call names. The side with the truth need not and should not do this. When the facts are on your side, you draw attention to them. When they’re not, you draw attention from them.
9. Be sensitive to the spiritual needs of your audience. (Look and pray for heart change, not just head change.)
10. Ask them questions that will make them think (usually for the first time):
“You say you want to be called prochoice, not proabortion. Why? What’s wrong with abortion?” (The only good reason for feeling bad about abortion—that it kills an innocent child—should compel you to be against others doing it also. You should either say it’s fine, or oppose it, but you can’t logically do both.)
“See this intrauterine picture of a live unborn at eight weeks (at the time of an early abortion)? What does that look like? (Eye.) That? (Fingers.) That? (Mouth.) That? (Nose.)” Don’t tell them. Let them answer. Then point out what they said.
“This baby has a measurable heartbeat at twenty-one days and brainwaves at forty days, before the earliest abortions. What do you call it when there is no longer a heartbeat or brainwaves? (Death.) What do you call it when there is a heartbeat and brainwaves? (Life.) What does abortion do? (Kills a living baby.)”
“This unborn baby is to a born infant what a born infant is to a toddler (younger and smaller). Do you think it would be more legitimate to kill an unwanted infant than a toddler just because he’s younger and smaller?”
“If abortion isn’t fundamentally different than other surgeries, like root canals and tonsillectomies, why are there so many postabortion support groups and hundreds of thousands of women getting psychological counseling and grief therapy related to their abortions? Do you know of any post-root canal counseling and support groups?”
“Will you read this carefully researched presentation? No? I was hoping you were open-minded. Are you choosing to censor this side of the debate from your own consideration? Why? I’ll be glad to read anything you have for me from the other side. I’m open-minded. Can you refute anything I’ve said? Show me. Let’s lay out all the evidence, and let the best position win. I’m not afraid of the truth. Are you?”