How Georgetown U students responded to pro-life activists speaking on campus


Students at Georgetown University chalk pro-choice messages during a Students for Life of America tabling event on Thursday, April 20, 2023.
Students at Georgetown University chalk pro-choice messages during a Students for Life of America tabling event on Thursday, April 20, 2023. | The Christian Post/Samantha Kamman

During the outreach in the morning, one pro-choice student began writing slogans in chalk like "Pro-life is a lie you don't care if people die" in front of the group's display. The student also wrote sayings such as "I have a heartbeat, too," and "Healthcare is a human right." 

The student, who said that her name was Alli, told CP that she wanted to do a "silent protest" against the pro-life display in a way that wouldn't help the group receive more attention than what people were already giving them. 

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"I think abortion is a form of healthcare," the student said, saying that she believes that pregnancy can put a woman's physical or mental health at risk. "I think that healthcare should be a human right." 

"And I think they're misinformed about the issues," Alli said, referring to pro-lifers. "And they don't actually care about human rights or life. If they did, people that are against abortion would support things like universal healthcare or other policies that actually enrich human life, such as being against the death penalty." 

The student clarified that she would not ask Hawkins or the other individuals manning the Students for Life display about their opinion on these policies, stating that she did not want to engage with them. Alli then went back to chalking after she was done speaking with CP. 

As she began chalking again, Hawkins asked Alli if she would like to discuss abortion. At first, Alli declined, choosing to continue chalking instead. But then she asked the pro-life leader about her stance on the death penalty, and Hawkins responded that she opposes it, saying that she follows Catholic teachings. 

Alli presented the SFLA president with a thought experiment: If she was trapped in a burning hospital and had the choice between saving a baby and stem cells (perhaps meaning to say embryos), which one would she choose? As Hawkins began to answer the question, the pro-choice student walked away angrily. 

Speaking with CP, Hawkins discussed her interaction with the student, noting how the student claimed that the unborn aren't living. 

"Which is scientifically not accurate," Hawkins said. "I tried to engage her on that, and she just walked away and didn't want to have a discussion." 

"It's easier to write slogans you hear on TV than have an intellectually honest discussion about the scientific reality of abortion and the development of a fetal human," Hawkins added. 

She also highlighted how campus security instructed her to remain behind the table while doing outreach, and they prohibited her from filming anyone while engaging in dialogue. However, the school allowed Hawkins to film herself talking with people. 

The SFLA President stated that Georgetown is a "very liberal, private school." She asserted that part of the school's motivation for not wanting her to film the interactions with students stemmed from concern that the students would misbehave and it would make the campus look bad. 

A member of SFLA also wrote in chalk in front of the display, writing "Women Don't Need Abortion to Succeed." Pro-choice students walking by the table stomped on the pro-life chalk writing with their feet or poured the contents of their water bottles over it. 

Later in the afternoon, pro-choice students placed Planned Parenthood yard signs that read "Bans off our bodies" and "Abortion is healthcare" in the grassy areas near the pro-life display. Pro-choice students continued to write slogans on the ground throughout the day, chalking "Loserz were here" after the Students for Life display was taken down. 

Samantha Kamman is a reporter for The Christian Post. She can be reached at: Follow her on Twitter: @Samantha_Kamman

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