Nicole Montero/Asst. News Director
A total of 730,322 abortions were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2011, a five percent decrease from 2010.
According to Kristina Maldonado, the president of Catholic Panthers, the number is still high.
“Today, these topics are all hush hush and avoided,” Maldonado said. “Keeping the child is not going to wreck your life and [we are] raising awareness on the negative consequences on aborting your child and the emotional consequences, which aren’t really talked about either.”
Catholic Panthers, in collaboration with other organizations, will be hosting an open discussion to talk about the “right to be born” and the different options available for couples.
Maldonado hopes to get people to understand the pro-life mindset, a social and political movement in the United States that opposes abortion and believes that human life begins at conception, and stray away from pro-choice, a movement that advocates for the woman’s right to choose.
The pro-life and pro-choice movements may have started with the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, which decriminalized and legalized elective abortion in a number of states.
Maldonado wants students to come to discuss this at the event, all while bringing their own opinions and viewpoints for debate.
“Our event is non-religious and non-political,” she said. “It’s an educational event based on the fact that, at conception, even if people just say they’re cells, there is a baby. Scientifically, there is a child there. If the cells were not disrupted, a human would form. A person like you and I would be born.”
Some students are skeptical about attending the event.
“I just don’t know why I would go,” said Ernesto Menendez, a freshman biology major. “The truth is that it already seems like these people are going to try to convince me to be pro-life. Heck, just look at the title of the event: right to be born. I might just go over and fight them on this.”
Claudia Hernandez, a sophomore women studies major, is excited to attend.
“Of course I’ll be there,” she said. “Who else is going to tell them that pro-choice is not only significant to our laws but to women in general. Women have the right to choose what to do with their bodies. You mean to tell me that if a woman gets sexually assaulted and ends up pregnant she has to keep that child? No one is going to do that.”
Maldonado believes that there are more options, rather than just aborting.
“The pro-life community is here to support those who are in crisis pregnancies, so it’s not to look down upon them,” she said. “We’re not here pointing a finger at them. Let’s raise awareness about other options, like adoption. There’s people who would love to have a child and can’t [conceive].”
The event is a collaboration between Catholic Campus Ministry, Respect Life Ministry Archdiocese of Miami, Franciscans of Life and the South Dade Pregnancy Help Center.
Analisse Herrera, a junior Italian major, is glad that the University is hosting an event that can raise awareness on the “consequences” of abortion.
“You’re killing a child, you know?” Herrera said. “Some people don’t think it’s formed yet but, within the month, they have fingernails. They’re real human beings. Who are we to say when someone should or shouldn’t be born? We are not God, so let’s stop acting like we are.”
“I’d want to know why they’re pro-choice and their reasoning behind that and then, based on what they tell me, I could make them contemplate the idea of openness for life,” she said.
“Why be closed off to it? Why is it such a hard thing to accept for a child to be born? Why is that viewed as a burden and why is it so difficult to carry a pregnancy that may or not have been expected? Why is it so hard to give that child life?”
Photo by Jess Pac courtesy of Creative Commons