New Billboard Campaign Draws Angry Protests

New billboard

New pro-life billboards on Chicago’s south side [Photo by Ann Scheidler]

On Tuesday morning, Life Always, the pro-life communications group responsible for the controversial pro-life billboard in New York, unveiled the first of their new billboards on Chicago’s south side, and Joe and I headed down for the unveiling ceremony.

This billboard features a picture of Barack Obama and the text, Every 21 minutes our next possible leader is aborted. Life Always plans to erect thirty such billboards on the south side of the city in predominantly African-American neighborhoods.

Pro-Choice Protesters Oppose Every Aspect of Campaign

A small group of young women showed up to protest the press conference and the presence of the billboard in what they claimed was their neighborhood. One of the women proudly displayed her sweatshirt: “Global Girls Inc., Courageous, Talented Girls Changing Our World.” Ms. Sweatshirt started shouting that we were not welcome in their neighborhood and claimed they had fought hard for the right to abortion. I attempted a conversation with this woman, but she was only interested in shouting at me and at everyone else.

Pro-choice counter-protester

Pro-choice protester talks with the media [Photo by Ann Scheidler]

Global Girls Inc. is a performing arts organization on Chicago’s south side for girls 8 to 18, where they learn communication, presentation and performance. They did put on quite a performance!

When the press conference got underway, three of these young women kept up a barrage of shouting and rants. Pastor Steve Broden, a board member of Life Always, spoke first. He had come to Chicago from Texas. The ranting women rejected his words because he was a man and he was from Texas. “Go back to Texas” they kept shouting.

When Pastor Isaac Hayes began to speak, the ranting women shouted at him because he was a man and couldn’t get pregnant. Hayes is from Chicago, so the “get out of town” slogan had to be dropped for the moment. But then came Pastor Ceaser LeFlore. LeFlore is from south suburban Dolton, so they couldn’t listen to him, a non-Chicagoan and a man.

Protesters Don’t Even Respect a Fellow Woman

Cedra Crenshaw

Cedra Crenshaw addresses the crowd [Photo by Ann Scheidler]

Finally Cedra Crenshaw spoke, a woman, a mother and a former candidate for Illinois state Senate. The ranters dismissed her because they said she was “privileged,” so nothing she said could be taken seriously. Crenshaw gave the statistics on the lopsided rate of abortion among black women and the high rate of breast cancer in the black community. Still they tried to shout her down.

Even Barack Obama gets no credit from the Global Girls. He doesn’t count as a successful member of the black community because his mother was white, I was told by a particularly angry young woman named Aisha.

I asked Aisha why she and her friends who claimed to have had abortions and were single mothers didn’t demand that the fathers of these children take more responsibility for their children. She jumped to the conclusion that I was judging all black men as uncaring failures. Aisha told me to come with her and talk to some black men.

Danger Narrowly Avoided

So we started down 58th Street. After a couple of blocks, a woman from the neighborhood, Jeanette, came along and told me not to go any further. “She’s taking you to the drug dealing corner,” said Jeanette. Much as I wanted to make some headway with Aisha, I took Jeanette’s advice and turned back. Aisha continued to shout at me all the way back to the empty lot where the press conference was still going on.

These women kept demanding sex education to solve the problem of unwanted pregnancy. They demand abortion and are clueless about the devastating impact abortion has had on the black family. They seem to revel in the role of victim as if that were somehow empowering.

Sadly, being a victim accomplishes nothing. What they need is to do is attend the Pro-Life/Pro-Family Conference at Monument of Faith Church on April 30. They would learn something about the endangered black family and they would meet some really good people who might inspire them to raise the bar for themselves and their own children.

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