Newswire photo by Brittany Wells | Students for Life presented the display, “They feel pain,” yesterday in GSC. Some students found the tabling and display to be insensitive.
Students for Life (S4L), a pro-life student club, hosted a “Students for Life of America” table titled “They Feel Pain” yesterday. The display stated that fetuses can feel pain at 20 weeks after conception.
S4L also facilitated a signing of a petition for a federal ban on abortion 20 weeks after conception. “Currently, Ohio is one of the 19 states that does have a ban after 20 weeks, so we want to spread information about the issue in order to make the ban nationwide,” S4L President Anna Gayford said. This was the first time the display has been presented on campus.
“Discussions our club will have will at least cause students to think a little bit more about abortion than they normally would on a Tuesday afternoon. This may lead to more conversations among friends, or… a little reminder for another day.”
Junior international business major Allison Schroeder didn’t think a little reminder was all students or other passersby would take with them.
“When I first walked into (GSC), I was pretty disturbed about the display organized by Students for Life,” Schroeder said. “I have seen other pro-life campaigns before, but never on Xavier’s campus like this one.”
Schroeder did not dismiss the members of S4L’s freedom to express their opinions on an issue they are passionate about but found the messaging to be hostile. “Their display sends an aggressive message that people who have had an abortion — which includes students, faculty and staff — have made the wrong choice,” she said.
Schroeder noted that because GSC is a hub of activity on campus for members of the Xavier community, there is no way for the S4L club members to know the experiences that passersby have had with abortion. “Entering GSC and seeing their display could be incredibly triggering to students who have experienced this kind of trauma,” Schroeder said.
S4L asserts that this display was not meant to alienate pro-life or pro-choice individuals.
“We hope that this event can bring together both pro-choice and pro-life students to agree that it is scientifically proven that babies feel pain by 20 weeks and as a result, abortion should be banned,” S4L member Lily Hutkowski said.
By: Brittany Wells| Staff Writer