Pro-Life or Pro-Choice – Which side should we be on?

I have been living in the US for almost 6 months now and, inevitably, I witness every day the most important issues for the americans. Presidential election and the campaigns have not passed by my very attentive “socially oriented ear”. While most of those keeping an eye on the candidates would pay attention to their economic plans, my mind has selected one very itching issue being brought up: Pro-Life or Pro-Choice attitudes. The only reason I selected this issue is because it reminded me of a beautiful story in particular and others, very  impressive, that have had a huge role in the main plot.

Friends and cohesion

When I graduated from university, there were a few friends that I really missed, mostly because I wasn’t too interested in making new friends, so I didn’t. So, the phone call that I got from Cosmin, one of those few friends, was the sign that I absolutely have to prioritize. Meaning that I had to meet him and see what he’s been up to.

Over a cup of coffee, Cosmin shared with me and Andreea, my best friend, his wonderful future project that involves Pro-Life activities and campaigns. The more I listened, the more I was attracted to the cause and afraid that, if I joined them, we would fail miserably. But I did. I joined them

We started meeting on a regular bases, strategizing, making communication plans, goals and objectives, writing down every silly fundraising idea and fighting over the real meaning of words such as: “ideal”, “community”, “sharing”. It’s silly, I know.

When we started making handcrafts to sell them for holidays and use the money for our cause, I still wasn’t sure that we were going the right way. It was all too difficult, taking an idea, putting it into practice, in real life, with real money – that someone gave you trusting that you would do a great job -, with real people.

Starting from scrap and making it real for the others

There was just a handful of us working on this project, but it all started from Cosmin’s father’s idea that Iasi – the city we lived in – has to have a nucleus of people that is working on saving, protecting and help growing life. He recruited his son, along with his two best friends – Dragos and Otilia. They worked together for a year on developing the project, merging ideas with real life practices, looking for a location, technology and a team they could count on to bring their baby into this world.

This is how I got involved, but my contribution was too small, because I left the country. Now, their baby is growing, they are starting to help people, mothers-to-be that cannot afford one more child and want an abortion – they offer counselling and financial aid -, women that have had an abortion and now are living with a constant pain and restlessness, or women that have children and want to offer them a good life and education in a creative, peaceful community that values Christian beliefs.

It seems ambitious, almost unnatainable. In spite of that, they made it. They launched the project, they gathered stories, testimonials, they held conferences and are planning others. I can only cheer on them and spread their message in my world, no matter how small it may be.*

What it itches and what helps with it

Pro-Life is more than a trend, an attitude or a belief. It’s what someone embraces when faced with a choice. Pro-Life and Pro-Choice have been considered as opposites lately and, by my standards, that was wrong. When one is pregnant, she has a choice: keeping it or not. She keeps it, therefore she is Pro-Life. She doesn’t, therefore she is Pro-Choice. No, she is having an abortion. I am not saying this in a judgemental way, but strictly as an observation. Choice is not the same as abortion.

Pro-Choice and Pro-Life, the way they are often used by those who promote them, are saying that one – e.g. God, a counselor, someone’s mom, a priest, a doctor, etc. – can TELL the others what to do when faced with this situation. You know, everything is a matter of choice, and this is such a personal one that only being close to each person facing it at a time can give you the right to suggest her what to do. That is what my friends, from the ProVita Center of Iasi are trying to do: get close, listen, try to guide and then stand by that person once their decision is made.

What do you think of this debate – is it important enough for us to consider it, are the arguments thrown in the game valid, should we look at it from a moderate point of view rather then pointing rights and wrongs?  I would love to know more about how you feel about it.

 

* ProVita Center is at the beginning of its activity so their website is in only in  Romanian for now, but for those of you who are Romanian, it might be worth visiting it.

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