OPINION: Anti-abortion protesters have gone too far


Leah Boone, Associate Opinion Editor

Editor’s Note: This article contains information regarding mass genocide and abortion.

Halloween 2022 was one of the scariest so far, as anti-abortion protesters set up a massive tri-fold on Sanford Mall depicting horrific images and spreading false information. The group, the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, have been on multiple college campuses throughout the last couple weeks, including University of North Carolina at Charlotte and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The side of the tri-fold facing the main walkway past Sanford Mall showed pictures of “aborted babies,” comparing it to images from the Holocaust as well as a lynching of an African American. The images were horrifically graphic with no warning at first to approaching students of what they were about to see. After a couple hours, a warning was posted, but still too late to warn all passing students.

The images shown titled “10 Week Abortion” show the limbs of babies as compared to a quarter and a dime. However, these images have nothing to do with abortion. The CRB promoting these ideas in comparison to mass genocide is a disgusting approach to expressing opinions and should not be allowed to come onto college campuses anymore.

On the CRB’s website, they compare their ideals to those of Martin Luther King Jr. 

Just as Dr. Martin Luther King sought to create a ‘creative tension’ to awaken the nation to the horrible injustice of segregation, we too are creating a ‘creative tension’ to awaken the nation to the horrible injustice of abortion.” 

It is unfathomable how this organization can compare themselves to a Black civil rights activist while also displaying a blown up image of a Black person being lynched and comparing it to false information regarding abortions. 

On another side of the tri-fold is an entire section entitled “What about Rape?” in which they compare rape victims to aborted fetuses. This comparison is vile, grounded in absolutely no fact and extremely invalidating toward rape victims. 

The organization depicts and discusses multiple triggering images and topics, including but not limited to the Holocaust, lynching of Black people, rape and the murder of Native Americans by the United States Army. Each of these topics were dreadful points in history that are upsetting to millions of people. To blow them up and belittle them by comparing them to misinformation is an abominable form of protest.

The website, just like the ginormous tri-folds on college campuses, provides no trigger warning while simultaneously having very graphic images and videos popping up. There are photos and videos of abortions as well as abortion instruments. 

While there were counter protesters on Sanford, this did not stop the CRB from attempting to forcefully spread their message to all passing students. At both UNCC and UNC, the organization stayed for two to three days, whereas at App State, they were gone by the morning of Nov. 1. 

With universities like this being public, there is technically no rule saying organizations like this can be kicked off campus. However, the way the CRB went about promoting their message disrupted the peace and most likely triggered many unknowing students who ran into this on their way to class.

 There needs to be some sort of limit to who can set up in public places and what they can depict, because this crosses an indescribable amount of lines. It is bad enough the CRB spreads false claims regarding abortion, but to compare it to real-life genocide still affecting millions to this day is both shocking and atrocious.

With the early action deadline for applying to App State being Nov. 1 and other application deadlines approaching quickly, there have been multiple tours throughout the campus every day, including Halloween. 

To be a potential incoming student and seeing this abomination on campus could be an immediate turn off. Young children also come with their families on these tours or just to enjoy campus, and the fact that an unsuspecting child could have seen graphic images such as those on the tri-fold is a terrifying thought.

Expressing opinions and protesting is a fundamental right in America and should by no means be eliminated. There are ways to promote anti-abortion ideologies without erecting giant tri-folds with both false claims and vividly disturbing images. There must be limits to this right put into place for organizations like the CRB to eliminate such nauseating comparisons and depictions.