Men are often told they have no voice in the abortion debate, yet an ongoing program, “Men for Choice”, seeks to amplify the voices of men in order to support abortion. One young woman, concerned about the program's ability to silence the voices of all who speak up for the unborn, and in particular women who have been mistreated because of abortion, decided to stand up and voice her opinion on the men’s abortion advocacy.
“People are always talking about choice, but it’s only one choice,” said Kate Bryan, a resident of Washington, D.C. “That’s what I feel about Men for Choice: they’re really only pushing for one choice and if you don’t stand with them, you shouldn’t have a voice.”
Bryan and a friend protested against an event promoting Men for Choice, an ongoing program coordinated by NARAL Pro-Choice America, a national abortion advocacy organization. Together, they carried signs reading “Real Men Don’t Exploit Women” and “Real men feed their babies they don’t kill them.”
She and a friend attended a Sept. 26 rally of Men for Choice in the nation's capital, and said she plans on protesting future Men for Choice events. Bryan said she was motivated to protest for her pro-life beliefs, as well as her interest in supporting women’s voices and pushing back against what she described as the “exploitation” of women.
Bryan said she finds it “interesting” that the pro-abortion organization is trying to promote men’s support for abortion, given that it can open up “so many opportunities for abuse, coercion.” Bryan pointed to several examples of coerced abortion and the pressure some women faced from family and partners to get an abortion.
Bryan also participated to help educate attendees on the facts of abortion procedures. “Most people go into events with minds made up on abortion,” Bryan told CNA. However, many of the women she talked to at the event didn’t know basic facts about abortion procedures, at what ages these procedures are performed, and NARAL’s policies on abortion. She said that several of the women she talked to expressed disbelief and then surprise as they came to accept these facts. “I don’t know if we changed anybody’s mind, but at least we challenged people to think,” Bryan said.
The experience was different, however, when encountering the male protestors, Bryan stated. “The majority of men that were walking past mocked us,” she recalled. “We weren’t doing anything, just standing out there with our sign, and we were happy to talk to people.”
Despite some of the more tense interactions, Bryan said she’s glad she protested. “Abortion doesn’t lead to freedom. It’s not empowering to women.”
Bryan said she would like to see more “real choices” for women, like community support for pregnant women, better workplace protections, and family leave. “I really feel passionate about empowering women and giving them opportunities and helping them find true freedom,” Bryan stressed. “Women deserve better, men deserve better and children in the womb certainly deserve better.”