Villanovans for Life kicks off Respect Life week

Carmen Ruiz-Castaneda

Although the Roe vs. Wade decision legalized abortion in 1973, the dedication of the Villanovans for Life demonstrates that the debate concerning this issue is far from over.

The group organized Respect Life week from Oct. 27 to Nov. 1 in order to raise University awareness and to educate students about abortion.

“We realize that abortion is not a pleasant issue to address,” junior Colleen O’Boyle, vice president of Villanovans for Life, said.

“But we must be willing to step outside of our comfort zones to uphold justice.”

VFL has been planning Respect Life week since early September. Members have gathered information to be presented to the University community about abortion.

“We do it [Respect Life week] because abortion hurts women and children,” said senior Johanna Mihok, secretary of VFL.

“We do it because those children can’t stand up for themselves.”

The group distributed literature about abortion and resources for students facing a crisis pregnancy at the Oreo on Monday and Wednesday and will do so again today. The group also hung posters in dormitories and public spaces around campus.

The pink, blue and black balloons around the Oreo on Wednesday have been the most visible display of abortion statistics. The balloons compare the number of births to the number of abortions there are every day.

Using statistics from the National Vital Statistics Report from the Center for Disease Control and Planned Parenthood, VFL established that there are about 11,120 births and 3,562 abortions in the United States each day. According to Mihok, each blue or pink balloon represents approximately 100 male or female births, and each black balloon represents about 100 aborted children.

VFL’s efforts do not end with Respect Life week, as the group intends to build on this foundation later in the year with speakers, the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C. and the annual Respect for Life Dinner in the Villanova Room.  Other events will center on the commemoration of the 30-year anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision.