Video by Nate Doughty and Connor Perrett.
Created Equal, a traveling anti-abortion organization that campaigns on college campuses, staged a demonstration at Howard Park Friday morning. Members of the student organization Feminist Equality Movement (FEM) and the statewide organization, National Abortion Rights Activism League (NARAL) Pro-Choice Ohio, occupied the sidewalk in front of Created Equal to promote its cause of reproductive rights and pro-choice advocacy.
“As advocates for reproductive rights and people’s bodily autonomy, we feel obligated to let people know that this is not what abortion is and give them actual information,” Alainna Marincic, a senior integrated media major and FEM’s URGE liason, said. “I think it’s an issue of choice and a medical decision that many people make.”
URGE, or United for Reproductive and Gender Equality, is a nationwide organization that has campus chapter activities, such as the anti-demonstration in which FEM took part. It included a dancing uterus costume and informational zines that promoted Planned Parenthood.
Jacob Hoback, a sophomore political science major, created the student organization Bobcats for Life last semester to promote the right to life.
“I think honestly the best thing people could do is read about embryology. No embryologist says life begins after conception. There’s not one embryologist that says life begins at eight weeks or when the baby comes out of the womb,” Hoback said.
He hopes that other social justice groups on campus, like LGBT organizations and the Black Student Union, will join together to fight what he terms the “dehumanization of the unborn.”
Bobcats for Life sponsored Created Equal, which brought its own team of demonstrators and graphic posters of aborted fetuses, the legitimacy of which was questioned by FEM President Sarah Weingarten. Created Equal does not source any of its promotional material online or in-person.
“Our organization encourages the right to free speech and anyone who has an opinion has the right to express it, regardless of whether we agree with it or not, so they have the right to be here,” Created Equal Communications Coordinator Sarah Jimenez said, in response to FEM’s activity and the surrounding observers. “I completely agree, women have every right to do what they want with their body until it interferes with another human life.”