Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Compassion is the middle ground…

Often in the din of the abortion debate the voices of women are lost. Often the shouting between sides on many reproductive justice issues overshadows the issues themselves.
In the recent presidential debate Senator Obama mentioned finding a middle ground in the abortion debate. I think that the middle ground doesn’t need to be found, it already exists. The middle ground is about compassion. As the religious and ethical voice for reproductive justice, Faith Aloud believes that compassion is central to all conversations about reproductive justice. We believe that all people deserve compassion no matter what choices they are making and they need compassion in their decision making process. For most people compassion is hard to argue with. Choosing to end a pregnancy can be compassionate just like choosing to carry a pregnancy to term can be compassionate; being abstinent can be compassionate just like talking frankly about sexuality can be compassionate. Voting can be about compassion. Compassion can’t just be the middle ground of the abortion debate, or the gay marriage debate or any debate about reproductive justice—compassion has to be the foundation of these discussions.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Aloud to be heard cont.

Check out what we have been working on for Aloud to be Heard:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Talking About Silence…

This morning I was aghast to find that an anti-choice group was not only planning some very disturbing actions in schools on October 21st but also that they were simultaneously undermining the hard work that LGBTQ folks have done with The Day of Silence. The Day of Silent Solidarity is the anti-choice movements spin on The Day of Silence and it will take place this year on October 21st in schools across the country. Using the same basic idea behind the Day Of Silence, the anti-choicers are telling students to not talk all day long so they can be in solidarity with the 4, 000 “infant voices” that are supposedly silenced each day by abortion. Over sixty schools have been registered in Missouri including Ladue High School and all of the schools in the Parkway district.
Clearly, this action goes against many of the principles we believe in here at Faith Aloud. Firstly, the name invites an obvious and hurtful comparison between the silencing of LGBTQ folks by our government and our homophobic society to the choice some women make to end their pregnancies. Secondly, this day is a clear attempt to use scare tactics to silence the voices of women. Finally, the day of silent solidarity represents only one of many different religious beliefs on the subject of choice.
We here at Faith Aloud think that actions like this shouldn’t go unnoticed or unchallenged. So we have created our very own day of action in response—on the same day…October 21st 2008. We know this isn’t much notice but we are moving quickly. Aloud to be Heard is our attempt to let the voices of reproductive justice be heard above the din of the religious right. We will be creating a facebook event, as well as a myspace event, and we welcome you to check those out. We will be advocating people to wear purple on October 21st in response to the red color scheme of the anti-choice action. More updates will come including flyers that you can pass out and possible places to get buttons and stickers in time for the event. You can start by joining the group, and being aware that at schools all across the country on October 21st anti-choicers will be trying to silence the voices of people who believe they have the right to decide what happens to their body without condemnation from anyone, the voices of people who believe in a compassionate god/goddess that loves all of humanity.
We are also calling for people to use their voices by submitting their stories of choice...whether it be the choice to terminate a pregnancy, undergo fertility treatments, carry a child to term, adopt a child, use a sperm donor or surrogate, or any other story of choice...these stories can be posted anonymously here or sent via email to
Many people in this country have had their voices silenced…so let’s speak up because we are ALOUD TO BE HEARD. –LGBTQ Day of Silence website

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Theological Musings: Kelli Whitman

I have spent many mornings outside The Hope Clinic at Faith Aloud’s Faithful Presence silently opposing the protesters who chose to scream at the patients who enter the clinic and me as I hold my “I’m pro-choice and I pray” sign. These mornings have often prompted musings on what it means to be a pro-choice Christian who supports reproductive justice. Here are some of those musings: Does my view on reproductive rights stand outside my convictions as a Christian? Do they have to be mutually exclusive or can my religious beliefs in fact be the reason I am pro-choice? I couldn’t do the work I do every week if I thought the two were mutually exclusive. I look at scripture and see a gracious God who created humanity to be in relationship with each other, and trusted humans with the gift of free will. I see a Jesus who taught us to remove the speck from our own eye before pointing out the log in another’s and preached a gospel of compassion and acceptance. I stand on my UCC heritage which declares that “access to safe and legal abortion is consistent with a woman’s right to follow the dictates of her own faith and beliefs in determining when and if she should have children.” I look into our church history and see Augustine’s doctrine of original sin and the way it continues to warp thinking about sex and sexuality 1600 years after he first invented it. And although these convictions help me understand the intersection of faith and social issues, I am all too aware that the protesters also stand on scripture (however out of context it may be) and tradition to point out all the reasons I will burn in hell someday. Does one of us have to be wrong? Can we both be right? Does it matter? And if it doesn’t matter, why do I get up once a month to stare down 80 hateful faces and risk my own personal safety to say it does?

Friday, October 3, 2008


Here is something really interesting for Students!!!!

Some friends created a website that helps college students figure out where their vote counts more:

Two easy things you can do:
1) email this to any college age friends and friends with college age siblings, etc.
2) join the Count More
facebook group.