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Monday, October 20, 2014

Report from Fordham

Me (second from left) chillin' with Respect for Life officers
Your SPL president Kelsey Hazzard here. On Saturday evening, I spoke at Fordham University in the Bronx, where I was hosted by the wonderful young men and women of Fordham University Respect for Life. Unexpectedly, the audience was entirely pro-life.* This rarely happens when I speak at a college campus—there are usually at least a few pro-choicers who are curious and/or dedicated enough to show up, which is what makes the Q & A sessions so fun—and the presentation is prepared with a mixed audience in mind. So I went off-script and we wound up having a fabulous conversation about pro-life strategy, leadership skills, and relational apologetics.

And that's why there's no video of the talk. Sorry.

This was our last speaking engagement for the fall semester. Student groups, it's never too early to start planning for the spring! If you're part of a student pro-life organization and want an SPL speaker to come to your campus (me for the east coast, my colleague Monica Snyder for the west coast), start the process by sending an email to info@secularprolife.org. We're very affordable: you pay travel costs only, no honorarium, and we'll even stay in the dorms so you don't have to pay for a hotel.

Our next events will be the March for Life, Walk for Life, and corresponding Students for Life of America conferences. For more information about those, visit our website under "Upcoming Events."
 
*We didn't expect it because, although Fordham is a Jesuit institution, it doesn't have a conservatively Catholic campus culture. (The school even hosted Peter Singer a few years back, much to the chagrin of conservatives.) The student body is fairly diverse, and Respect for Life's president is a mainline Protestant.

33 comments:

secularprolife.org said...

4 men and 1 woman (except for you) are in that photo. Is that about the ratio that showed up to the talk? Fordham has a 46.1% male student body. Why so skewed towards men?

secularprolife.org said...

"And that's why there's no video of the talk. Sorry."

:(

secularprolife.org said...

Those are the group officers (and possibly not all of them); the picture doesn't tell us anything about the gender ratios of the audience. But even if it were mostly men, it wouldn't change the substance or validity of the arguments. For what it's worth, at my college (which is predominantly male), 6 of the 7 officers in the pro-life group are women.

Anyway what does it matter who's in the picture, unless you're determined to see misogyny?

secularprolife.org said...

Men seek to control female reproductive capacity. This is not a new concept. The sacred sperm is entitled to the female body in order that the male may propagate his genes.

secularprolife.org said...

Some free advice: The above picture really doesn't do your 'cause' any good. The people in it look to be mostly college kids, and most people over the age of 30 or so who actually have to earn a living and support themselves and their families are not going to agree that college age kids, who are still getting a free meal ticket from mommy and daddy should tell other people how to live their lives, or what sort of 'responsibilities' other people should take on for the precious zef because a bunch of spoiled college kids have sad feelies.

secularprolife.org said...

Of course there are some men who think that way, but what does that have to do with abortion?

There are millions of pro-lifers, men AND women, fighting the killing of unborn human beings. If they just wanted to control female reproductive capacity, those people would also be fighting just as hard to ban contraception and natural family planning, or maybe to require women to have a certain number of children, or be artificially inseminated, etc. But they're not, because those things don't end an individual human life. Anyway you can't force a woman to reproduce by requiring that she carry the baby to term, because once she's conceived, she has already reproduced.

And even if pro-lifers were all misogynists, that wouldn't tell us anything about whether abortion itself is just or unjust.

"Pro - lifers are trying to control/oppress women" is a strawman argument, and that's all. There's no nefarious ulterior motive to subjugate women.

secularprolife.org said...

I guess you havent been paying attention to the whole Hobby Lobby fiasco.

secularprolife.org said...

I was just asking a question about the demographics of the audience. I never said anything about the validity of the argument, I have no idea how you came to conclude that from my post. I never noticed misogyny as underlying the pro-life message, but now that you mention it, you might be right about its influence in the pro-life debate.

secularprolife.org said...

Hobby Lobby wasn't trying to ban contraceptives generally or prevent their employees from obtaining them. They objected to being required to use their money to cover 4 particular types of birth control which they had strong moral objections to. (Owing to the possibility that those methods may sometimes act after conception and end life rather than preventing it.)

secularprolife.org said...

No. It was hysteria over birth control, as has been proven by the fact that other organizations will not even sign a piece of paper which will exempt them from having to cover birth control.

They don't want their employees accessing birth control at all, if they can help it, because what goes on in another persons uterus deeply concerns them.

secularprolife.org said...

Your post came across as very sarcastic and the questions sounded rhetorical (with the implied answer being that no, of course college audiences in general aren't dramatically skewed towards men, as if all the female college students just stay home, but this audience was mostly male because pro-lifers are mostly men because misogyny), although, if I misinterpreted your meaning then I apologize. But honestly even feeling the need to comment on gender ratios makes me pretty doubtful that your post is an innocent inquiry on demographics. Though again, if that's the case then I'm sorry.

secularprolife.org said...

Hobby Lobby willingly covers 16 other forms of birth control.

secularprolife.org said...

I'm fully aware that given a student body gender ratio of 46.1% male, a 4:1 showing wouldn't be a statistically significant deviation from a 1:1 null hypothesis, given that the total number of people in that photos is 5 (+1).



However, given that the issue is mainly a woman's issue, pointing out what what looks superficially like an over-representation of males in attendance I think is a reasonable observation to make. More than just the position on issues, I have always been interested in why people take a certain stance on certain issues, and demographics I am also very interested in demographical distribution of opinions.

secularprolife.org said...

Which has nothing to do with what I just said.

secularprolife.org said...

Gotcha. Well sorry I misinterpreted then. Typically when people comment on what genders are present in the pro-life life movement it's to criticize the supposed lack of female involvement and characterize the movement as misogynist. Since the genders of those in an individual picture is clearly due mostly to to mere chance, "why so skewed towards men" seemed to be an unfounded assumption about the larger audience, since there really is no underlying reason why the picture is skewed that way.

secularprolife.org said...

Women can also be misogynist. The practioners of FGM, for example, are mostly women.

secularprolife.org said...

It has everything to do with it. They didn't object to BC generally, but they did object to forms over which they had concerns about ending life. That's why they were fine with covering certain forms and not others.

secularprolife.org said...

Nope. Little Sisters of the Poor and Ave Maria University don't want their employees accessing contraception at all, which is why they won't even sign a paper that exempts them from responsibility..
http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2014/09/22/3570132/religious-conservatives-finally-admit-what-they-really-want-out-of-hobby-lobby/

secularprolife.org said...

What it does do, though, is provide a fabulous graphic representation of reality: most anti-choicers are male.

secularprolife.org said...

If they objected so strongly to those four methods of contraception (which, BTW, was expanded the day after the ruling to include all types), then why did they invest in the companies that made them? And why did they cover them previously?

secularprolife.org said...

I'm 33 with 5 kids, and I work full-time. Graduating from college, getting a full-time job, and having a family didn't change my pro-life views -- in fact it only made them stronger.

secularprolife.org said...

Actually, their employees are free to access contraception if they choose to do so. What the Little Sisters of the Poor and AMU object to is being forced to subsidize said contraception, even indirectly.

secularprolife.org said...

You should read the article. The exemption means they don't have to subsidize a bloody thing, yet they won't even sign the paper that EXEMPTS THEM FROM IT ENTIRELY.

secularprolife.org said...

Congratulations. Still doesn't give you a right to punish other people for having sex. Also doesn't turn a zef into a 'baby'.

secularprolife.org said...

** those people would also be fighting just as hard to ban contraception**

Which a number of them are.

**and natural family planning, or maybe to require women to have a certain number of children, or be artificially inseminated**

Your handwaving and trying to pretend that punishing women for having sex is the same thing as 'controlling female reproductive capacity' and then since you can 'prove' that they aren't 'doing those things', therefore they 'aren't trying to punish women for having sex.

**Anyway you can't force a woman to reproduce by requiring that she carry the baby to term, because once she's conceived, she has already reproduced.**



So, you're admitting here what Myintx keeps denying, and claiming a molar pregnancy is a 'human being'?

secularprolife.org said...

Women can absolutely be misogynists. For example, the poster who shall not be named, but who's nom de plume begins with "my" and ends in "intx." She is a straight up misogynist. The pity is that she doesn't recognize it.

secularprolife.org said...

Yeah. NO. NONE of these methods "end the life" of a conceptus. The conceptus dies of natural causes, that is, if breakthrough ovulation does occur. That happens to 50-70% of all embryos IN THE ABSENCE of hormonal mediation. We don't know why. It may be bad timing within the woman's cycle. It may be that the embryo is SO abnormal that life cannot continue even in that primitive state, so it dies and is passed harmlessly out of the body. The woman will never even have been aware that the embryo ever existed. We only know that we can't change this fact. It's how evolution prepared us as a species to handle reproduction, and it differs from most other mammals who experience estrus, and are reflex ovulators (they ovulate in response to coitus, and not at random like humans.) Regardless of what these people "sincerely believe" I have a real problem with using their unscientific beliefs to deny medication to strangers that may help them. if they're uncomfortable with a given medication that means THEY don't use it.

secularprolife.org said...

If they are SO opposed to subsidizing birth control, "even indirectly" they have no choice but to forgo insurance period. Anyone who buys an insurance policy is subsidizing birth control, because 1)all the premiums go in the same pot, and 2) are invested in various markets, all of which include companies that manufacture birth control.

secularprolife.org said...

And the KKK includes 16 types of white people, so they can't be racist?

secularprolife.org said...

Is there anyone at Fordham that can defend the murders of the pro life movement?

secularprolife.org said...

Quote: There are millions of pro-lifers, men AND women, fighting the killing of unborn human beings.

..............
Fighting is right - by bombing, maiming, shaming and blaming. Also assassination.


Zealots like you are dangerous. Do not come anywhere near me or my daughters in your 'fighting' IN REAL LIFE. I will hurt you. I will enjoy hurting you.


That said - if you have to 'fight' to convince someone of an idea/ethic, your idea/ethic is flawed bigtime.

secularprolife.org said...

WRONG. Now the decision covers all types of birth control.


So the Repubs and the SEXphobic Zealots are picking my pocket, while Hobby Lobby profits from investments in the very birth control they claim to shun.



Cons and Forced Birther Cultists are so stupid, I wonder how they remember to breathe.

secularprolife.org said...

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/07/supreme-court-scotus-hobby-lobby-all-forms-contraception

Less than a day after the United States Supreme Court issued its divisive ruling onBurwell v. Hobby Lobby, it has already begun to toss aside the supposedly narrow interpretation of the decision. On Tuesday, the Supremes ordered lower courts to rehear any cases where companies had sought to deny coverage for any type of contraception, not just the specific types Hobby Lobby was opposed to.