I had the strangest reaction the other day, and I still don’t know what to make of it. So I thought I would share it here on the blog.
We were driving around Fairbanks, and we came across some protestors. At first I didn’t know what they were protesting, but as I got closer, I saw their signs. They were anti-abortion protestors picketing outside a medical center.
Now I am pro-life, so I don’t quite know why, but watching them march up and down the street with their large picket signs actually horrified me.
Why did it horrify me? I really don’t know. I’ve tried to sift through my thoughts, and think through it rationally, but every time my mind goes back to seeing the picketers, I still feel that sickening feeling down in my gut.
At first I thought maybe I didn’t like the picketers because I was assuming that they picket instead of actually helping women in trouble. But, I have no idea what those protestors do when they aren’t protesting. They could very well put their money where their mouths are and help women who struggle with unplanned pregnancy.
And then I thought maybe I didn’t like the picketers because abortion protesting is so 1980s. It’s been done. What purpose does it serve? Just like my reaction to the Occupy protests this fall, after they kept going and going, I found myself wondering what purpose it actually served. Protesting is fine, but only if it leads to change. And is picketing outside a medical clinic really going to change the fact that abortions happen?
Was I just reacting to the fact that I saw these protestors in the U.S.? We have abortion protestors in Canada, but I wonder if I was reacting to the fact that these were American protestors, and Americans tend to be much more confrontational and outspoken in their opinions. Maybe, the fact that I’ve been staying in a house that plays Fox News almost 24/7 was making me hypersensitive to American polemics.
Maybe what made was so uncomfortable, was that it didn’t seem loving. Is it loving? Is picketing and carrying signs saying what you are against loving? Christians seem to be characterized so much by what we are against.
So, now I ask you, fellow cheese-wearers, any suggestions as to why I was horrified? How should I think about this theologically? Is it okay to be pro-life and uncomfortable with pro-life protestors at the same time? (Note: this is not a pro-choice, pro-life debate post)