Arguments at Sidewalk

Sometimes at Sidewalk there are certain encounters which calls for different kind of service. I was taught that Sidewalk Counseling is not just about counseling women and advocating for the unborn but, sometimes things can go further where we have to dig in a little bit deeper. But never did I think nor was I prepared for an unexpected experience which would go far beyond unborn and women’s rights. The following transcription was one such experience with a person who was pro-choice and who happened to pass by Planned Parenthood questioning me about as much as everything within a 45 minute conversation.  There were moments I felt desperate because I was incapable of explaining something marvelous like existentialism, human life, divinity, God or Sex.

Finally it is clear to me that nothing makes sense without God and Sidewalk Counselors may not be wanted but they are needed!

Let me know how better I could’ve answered.

Stranger :     What are you doing?

Me           :     Oh! am trying to offer help to women. Like giving information about the alternatives. this organization helps women, children and families with life-affirming options. so they take care of women who are pregnant and who need help with housing, schooling, rent, medical and legal help. Pretty much everything.

Stranger :    Who are you to do this?

Me         :    Why not? I’m just offering help. Many of them do not know about the help available. 

Stranger :    You think women just wake up and come to have an abortion? they know what they’re doing and they sit with their family and boyfriend and make the decision. You are here to force your morality on them. You’re not helping them.

Me         :    Well how many women have the luxury of talking about this with their family expecting them to support them? Do you know how many boy friends coerce their partners to have an abortion and threaten them of ending the relationship, i’m here and I see women crying and their boyfriend forcing them into this decision of killing their babies.

Stranger :    do you eat meat? are you a non vegetarian?

Me            :    Yes I do!

Stranger :    So you are ok with killing animals and you’re here to stop abortion. look at your hypocrisy

Me            :    So you say human beings and animals are same?

Stranger :    Yes! what makes human beings special or important than animals? do you know science?  do you know about Darwin and evolution?

Me            :   Darwin’s proposal was a theory. It’s not a fact.

Stranger :    Do you know big bang?

Me          :     No I don’t. I’ve heard people say everything came about in a boom by itself.

Stranger :    Look at that car. It has a design, a model, a reason…

Me           :     great yes. so it came in boom…just like that? you said it has a design and model and somebody made it for a purpose. so you sound like you don’t agree with bing bang. Life begins with fertilization that’s what scientists say.

Stranger :    No not at all. It’s not a human being until it comes outside. Do you know any science at all?

Me           :       Yes! but do you know the heart begins to beat by 3 weeks and 1 day. The child has a heartbeat, it has brain, kidneys all internal organs. It’s a living breathing human being. And abortion kills a human being.

Stranger :         No it’s not. You say you’re helping women but if you’re really concerned about women you should be volunteering in a women’s shelter. Or else you should promote IUD’s. You must be here handing out brochures about IUD’s and contraception so that there are fewer abortions. but you’re a hypocrite. you’re trying to make women feel bad about themselves. And we had to have wonderful people like this (pointing Planned Parenthood) to protect women from guys like you.

Me          :    Am sorry but contraception increases abortion. That’s what the research says. Planned Parenthood gives cheap contraception and forms a clientele which brings them back for abortion. This is an age old tactic. Do you know Abby Johnson? The former Director of Planned Parenthood? if you don’t know her you should read about her. And for your information  Planned Parenthood offers only  abortion. It does not even show the ultrasound to the women.

Stranger :    Yes they do. they offer all services. why should the women see ultrasound? they’re here for abortion.

Me     :    Don’t you think women have the right to know all the information before making a decision? She pays for a service and you say she doesn’t have to see her own ultrasound? Planned Parenthood does not give any information on adoption. All they care about is money. They even sell the body parts of the babies. You don’t seem to know their business model.

Stranger :    No. That’s not true.

Me           :    Unfortunately that is true. If Planned Parenthood exists for 99 years then why is the abortion rates increasing? If they’re providing  quality contraception services why there is such huge rates of abortion? Why couldn’t they end unplanned pregnancy?

Stranger :    Because of population growth. Because of people like you who don’t let them work. I pay people like them (Planned Parenthood) to do what they’re doing and people like you do nothing but cause trouble. If you’re really concerned about abortion rates promote IUD and condoms. We don’t need poor people. Why should a child be born if it has to live in poverty?

Me         :    So you’re saying poor people should be killed? You talk exactly like Margaret Sanger the racist who founded Planned Parenthood. How can you say only certain people can be alive and be born? Isn’t that wrong?

Stranger :   No. they’re helping women with their choice. Its legal. All you do is imposing your beliefs and make things difficult. If you really want fewer abortion then you have to promote contraception. Come on…

Me         :    No. I can’t. I don’t believe in IUD’s and condoms. Do you know the rate of cancer due to pills and chemical contraceptives? How IUD damages and even causes death in some women?

Stranger :    No you can’t speak based on single instances. people die of accidents, you can’t count individual cases. why can’t you promote IUD. It just stops the implantation from happening.

Me         :    I can only speak in terms of my faith. I believe life begins at conception, human being is made in the image of God and IUD is like preventing a natural course causing an early abortion.

Stranger :    no! it’s just like you’re having your periods. what happens when you have an unfertilized egg? it sheds off and you bleed. because implantation hasn’t occurred. IUD works just like that . So you take antibiotics when you get sick. aren’t you stopping a natural course of action now?

Me          :   Are you trying to compare human beings to bacteria? (chuckles) human beings are not parasite.

Stranger :    So don’t you use contraception?

Me           :   No . I don’t. I practice my faith and everything is based on that.

Stranger :    what is your faith? you’re a christian?

Me            :     Am a catholic

Stranger :    Oh! the pedophiles. those who say we don’t want to marry and who abuse children?

Me      :    yeah pedophiles are everywhere. In holywood, in planned parenthood…wherever human beings are there are pedophiles. No groups are free from mistakes. Just like Planned Parenthood which says they care for women but betray them and coerce them into abortion and sell the body parts of the babies.

Stranger :    so you are now dictating how people should have sex. who are you to say how i should seek pleasure. Where’s your f****ing God? there’s so much misery in this world and people are dying daily what’s your f****ing God doing about it?

Me        :    Well why is God suddenly responsible for all the miseries? We’ve been given freedom/free will and it’s human beings who messed up. that’s what history says.

Stranger :    My niece is 3 years old. He has cancer. So what did he do? how did he mess up?

Me         :     Well it can’t be his fault but he’s been affected by someone else’s actions. You can’t have just an instant answer for all suffering.

Stranger :    Why did your f****ing God give me appendices and an ugly eyes?

Me            :     (in my mind….well, you look good to me) smile

Stranger :   Even I love to see fewer abortions. Maybe we can agree on that right?

Me            :     Yes. No abortion. Zero.

Stranger :    Well then let’s promote contraception

Me            :     No.

Stranger :    why not. why not condoms IUD

Me        :     what’s the difference between human beings and animals? Human beings have higher sense. they know how to control their actions and behavior unlike animals. A dog acts on impulses. condoms makes human beings like dogs. besides condoms are not 100% protective.

Stranger :    So you say one should have sex only to reproduce?

Me            :     Yes. Sex is for marriage and babies.

Stranger :    So you are trying to dictate people’s sex life. Whoa….what bothers you if i say i don’t want a female in my life and i would just go mastrubating?

Me        :      I am not here controlling how people should be. I am not informing anyone about how they should have sex. Am here to offer them help when things mess up for them. I practice my faith and this is how i do things but i never dictate my belief on you. I give my opinion when people ask for it.

Stranger :    Nobody wants you here

Me            :     Yes they do.

Stranger :    look all those southern states. your catholic states, where they used to have 10-12 kids. now they have only 2. so do you say they don’t use contraception ?

Me            :     they do. but they’re not supposed to.

Stranger :    so what do you propose to end abortion if not contraception? you say people shouldn’t have sex?

Me           :     Natural Family Planning. if you ask me that’s what i would say. that’s what I practice. condom culture will promote abortion.

Stranger :    would you agree if I say you should only eat oats everyday because that’s the only thing healthy for you? why do you have delicious meal? because it’s a pleasure. so why do you say how i have to have sex? i seek pleasure in the way i want to. See how hypocrite you are. what you do is not going to stop abortion. If you want fewer abortions,you should promote contraception. Go and do some reading. And when you promote contraception call me in. I will come here and stand with you to help women. (checks mobile for time)

Me          :     Everything is not about pleasure. Well i will definitely look into the statistics you mentioned. But I will have to respectfully disagree with you that contraception won’t end abortion.  See you!


We need to realize that a society in which contraceptives are widely used is going to have a very difficult time keeping free of abortions since the lifestyles and attitudes that contraception fosters create an alleged “need” for abortion. – Janet Smith


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