By REY FLORES
“America will not reject abortion, until America sees abortion” — Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life.
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One thing I have often said about abortion is that you cannot sugarcoat it no matter how hard you try. It is a monstrous and criminal act against the most defenseless of human beings.
All one needs to do is to take a look at the instruments of destruction that are used by abortionists to imagine the kind of damage they can inflict on a tiny human person. Sometimes, however, the imagination isn’t enough and we must put the ugly reality in people’s faces for them to realize just how horrible abortion is.
In forensic science and criminology, law enforcement makes sure to photograph and collect all evidence at the scene of a crime. Autopsies are done at the morgues to determine the cause of death and photographs of all these procedures are often used in a court of law to prosecute any guilty parties responsible for killing another person or persons.
This is more or less what the ongoing Face the Truth tours do. They take the images of horribly mangled, mutilated, and disfigured babies into Main Street America and show the nation just what abortion looks like — no ifs, ands, or buts about it.
Face the Truth tours are week-long street actions where several volunteers will hold these signs at busy traffic intersections or downtown streets where there is much pedestrian traffic.
The graphic photographs of aborted babies have been blown up to five foot by three foot signs that cannot be missed. Many people honk their horns in support while many other have a visceral reaction to these pictures and either make an obscene gesture to the volunteers or throw garbage or even liquids at them.
In the Face the Truth tours I attended in the Chicago area, I noticed that adults with children in their vehicles tend to react with the most visible anger, often accusing us of somehow scaring their children with these images.
While I agree that perhaps these images might be too much for a child to see, I believe that the real reason why the adults respond so aggressively is probably because they are post-abortive themselves, and they are the ones that are offended by the graphic pictures, not their kids.
Since 2000, Chicago-based Pro-Life Action League has taken the lead on Face the Truth, not only organizing its own tours around the Chicagoland area, but the league has also helped other pro-life organizations launch their own Face the Truth tours in various parts of the country. The Pro-Life Action League just completed its 2014 tour last week.
The whole Face the Truth concept of showing graphic pictures of aborted babies in public came about from the Rev. Matt Trewhella of the Milwaukee-based Missionaries to the Preborn around 1990. That group successfully helped shut down many abortuaries in Wisconsin because of this powerful statement and witness.
Prior to that time, Pro-Life Action League’s Joe Scheidler and Abandoned author Monica Migliorino Miller were rescuing aborted babies from trash bins and photographing the evidence before giving these children a proper burial. Many of these photographs are the children on some of these signs.
Longtime pro-life warrior Jack Ames, founder of Defend Life, has been bringing the Face the Truth tours to people in Maryland near the Baltimore and Washington, D.C., areas with many varied reactions since 2001.
On August 1, 2008, Jack Ames and 17 others were illegally arrested by Maryland State Police who obviously were either ignorant of the First Amendment Right to free speech or simply violated Jack’s and 17 other Americans’ right to free speech.
No reason was given for arrests; phone calls were denied; several young women were strip-searched; and a lawyer was denied access. Defend Life has posted a video of the arrests on YouTube where you can plainly see how the arresting officers failed to obey the law.
In 2012, the Alliance Defense Fund (now the Alliance Defending Freedom) announced that Maryland State Police may no longer illegally arrest and silence pro-life advocates, and that part of the settlement required Maryland State Police to undergo training on the First and Fourth Amendments.
For those of you in and around Jack’s territory, this year’s tour is scheduled from Monday, July 28 through Friday, August 1 and he has lined up some terrific speakers for the daily luncheons hosted near the areas where the Face the Truth tour stops take place.
Save the 1’s Rebecca Kiessling will be speaking on Tuesday, July 29 at Annunciation Parish Hall in Washington, D.C., while the rest of the week includes Wanderer columnist Fr. Kevin Cusick, author and commentator Alan Keyes, and 40 Days for Life’s David Bereit.
Jack could use your help in many different ways during this week, so if you can organize some friends, family, and fellow parishioners to join Defend Life in this area, that would be terrific.
If you cannot take part, please prayerfully consider making a monetary contribution to www.DefendLife.org and, by all means, keep these brave warriors in your prayers. Contact Jack Ames at Defend Life: You can email him at Jack@DefendLife.org.
If you are interested in starting your own Face the Truth Public Education Initiative, visit www.prolifeaction.org/truth/.
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(Rey Flores is a Catholic writer and speaker. Contact Rey at firstname.lastname@example.org.)