I went to March for Life 2019, and got to speak to Autumn Lindsey. Autumn is a pro-life student activist, and is the president of her local Students for Life group. Students for Life is an organizations that works with young people all around the country, with over 1100 Student for Life groups in all 50 states. Their goal is to train and mobilize the pro-life generation with the hope to abolish abortion one day.
This is what Autumn had to say about her experience with Students for Life and the pro-life movement:
Why did you join Students for Life?
“So, I have been pro-life my whole life. Growing up my mom was really passionate about it, and I wasn’t involved until I heard that one of my friends started a Students for Life group on our local college campus. The next year I was going there for the Running Start program, so I was like ‘finally, I can jump into something that is pro-life;’ before I kind of felt at a loss for resources. I didn’t know what to do with being pro-life and so I was really excited to join Students for Life because I felt like I finally found a community and resources that I could use. Then, I ended up joining a Students for Life group, and now I run it because the last girl graduated and moved on. I am now the president of our local group. I love it because we get to talk about issues on campus. I feel like we are prepared for those conversations.”
Was there a moment in your life that you became pro-life?
“I don’t know if there was an exact moment growing up, but I know my mom talked about it a lot and she was really involved in the local pregnancy center. There was also these billboards we would drive by that a local pro-life organization would put up that said stuff like ‘Take my hand, not my life.’ My mom would be like ‘look at these billboards, look at this organization.’ We would talk about why we have pregnancy resource centers. Having those conversations and just realizing being really young and saying ‘I can’t believe that this is happening’ and just to put it in that perspective to be so young and still know that this is an issue. From there on out I knew this is something I wanted to stand up for.”
Is this your first March for Life?
“No, this is my second March for Life. Last year was my first one, and I remember being so excited. I was like ‘no way’ there are more people here than you can even imagine. So coming together with hundreds of thousands of pro-life people, it gives you hope that we will abolish abortion.”
How would you encourage young people to get involved?
“I would say part of it is definitely being educated. A lot of times Planned Parenthood is in schools, and they are the ones teaching sex education, and they are the ones targeting future clients. But knowing the facts of what happens and the impacts of abortion is crucial; knowing that science is pro-life. You can get involved by donating or helping out at your local pregnancy center, finding a Students for Life group, or starting one is vital to the movement. To have those resources and have a community around you that supports you is so important.”
What is your least favorite pro-choice argument?
“It is interesting because up until a couple of years ago, I didn’t really have these conversations with pro-choice people. My community was mostly pro-life people until you are on a college campus having these discussions. A lot of times you just see people go in circles. They will make a statement, you push them out of it, and then they move on and then it kind of comes back around. I think the most frustrating one is the ‘my body, my choice’ argument. I think that is the most common and also the most frustrating to try to explain to somebody that it is not your body. It is an individual, unique human with their own DNA and that they have their own life. So I think that one is used a lot and it can also be the most frustrating to explain against. It is a separate human.”
Who are your favorite pro-life speakers? Who would you recommend students listen to in order to learn more about pro-life views?
“I remember one of the first people I heard talk about this issue is Abby Johnson. She is a big testament to this movement. She was an abortionist. She has a unique perspective of being on both ends. Somebody who was pro-choice, who is now pro-life. A couple of other people, there is David Bereit. He runs 40 Days for Life. He runs an amazing organization. Of course, Kristan Hawkins, she is the president of Students for Life. She is feisty, and she is nitty-gritty, and she is in the movement. She is a huge inspiration with how motivated and dedicated she is. I worked closely with her, and she is always ready to jump in and do what needs to be done. Then there is Lila Rose. She is a great one. She jumped in as a young girl and runs Live Action. Those are the kind of people the last few years that have influenced my view of the pro-life movement and encouraged me to continue to speak up.”