Tradition Family Property Student Action’s presence stirred up heated discussion at Gettysburg College on Monday, October 16. The event was considered by some students as a different sort of Battle of Gettysburg, a peaceful battle of ideas in defense of innocent life. Abortion was challenged.
The “10 Reasons Why Abortion is Wrong” flyer caused mixed reactions, many of which were not so favorable, yet, a surprising openness to the anti-abortion message was observed. When truth is proclaimed respectfully with conviction out of love of God and the order that He established, the impact is recognized even by those who disagree.
“Listen, I’m pro-choice. I read your flyer over lunch and it’s well done. The arguments are very convincing. I’m going to have to re-think my position now,” said one student whose comment illustrates the effectiveness of the campaign.
A mixture of bagpipe music and slogans drove the message home: “The right to life is the most basic right! Reject abortion!” and “If abortion is a choice, then so is terrorism!” and “Pro-choice is the wrong choice” and “Will God bless America if America allows its own children to be aborted?”
A dozen students with pricked consciences congregated nearby with a sign that read: “Free Abortions Here.” They also brandished clothes hangers in order to indicate their support of abortion. This was not particularly clever, because their crude conduct reflected poorly on passersby. They forced themselves to laugh aloud, with the approval of a cluster of liberal faculty members who lingered in the area, some of which forcefully questioned TFP Student Action members: “Let me see your permit. This is hate speech!” They called campus security and the local police, hoping to get rid of TFP volunteers who were demonstrating on a public sidewalk. To their chagrin, first amendment rights prevailed. The campaign continued.
One belligerent pro-abortionist attempted to rally his friends against the TFP. “Come and help me. Help me debate,” he said. His friend replied: “No, no man. They’re going to blow us apart.”
Although the issue was abortion, one student brandished a paperback copy of The Da Vinci Code. He sat on a sidewalk bench, pretending to read it, perhaps still unable to fully recover from the impact of the TFP’s previous campaign on campus against the blasphemous film, and over 2,000 successful protests organized nationwide by the American TFP.
“It’s a great joy to be able to participate in such campaigns, which aim to defend the order God established,” said TFP Student Action member Alvaro Zapata. “All things have been ordered by God for a specific end, and by fulfilling that end, they give glory to God. Our end is to honor God and uphold this order,” he continued. “If we are ridiculed for doing so, we can take courage from the example of the Saints and from Our Lord Himself: ‘If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you… have confidence, I have overcome the world.’”