Youth Activism: “I’m Pro-Life, but I can’t vote yet”

I heard it all the time in high school, and I hear it from younger students all the time now:  “I’m pro-life, but I can’t vote yet.”  My immediate response is… so what!

Voting for pro-life candidates is but a fraction of our responsibilities as pro-lifers.  Young people are vital to the movement because we represent the future, and there is so much more to our activism than simply voting pro-life when election seasons come around.  We need middle and high school students standing up and being a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.  Don’t ever think that being too young to vote hinders you from educating others, helping pregnant women in need, or possibly saving a life.

Pro-life youth at the West Coast Walk for Life in San Francisco, CA

Since being pro-life means so much more than just voting for pro-life candidates, we have to act pro-life on a daily basis.  So what can a middle or high-school age student do?  This list consists of just a few ideas that students can do to spread awareness about abortion, even if they’re unable to vote:

  • Get involved with the pro-life club at your school and/or church.  If there isn’t one, start one!  There is strength in numbers, so get some friends together so you can work together to brainstorm and get active.  I started my high school pro-life club at 16, and Lila Rose founded Live Action at 15.  Being young should be motivation, not disincentive, to get active in the pro-life movement!
  • Contact your congressmen.  Write to the president, your Senators and Representative, your governor, and your state legislators and tell them why you’re against abortion and what you and your friends are doing to end it.  Let them know that you will all be able to vote soon enough, and you will be voting in favor of life, so they should listen to what you have to say!
  • Wear pro-life gear.  Be bold: don’t be afraid to wear awesome pro-life shirts.  You can put buttons with pro-life messages on your backpack.  I wear my Precious Feet pins all the time, and carry extras to share with others.  These are great conversation starters! (It is legal to wear these at school as long as it isn’t disruptive.  If you have problems, contact the Alliance Defense Fund.)
  • Get involved with 40 Days for Life (with your friends!).  Find a vigil in your area during the fall and spring campaigns and peacefully pray in front of the abortion facility with your friends and family.  Dozens of abortion workers have quit their jobs, abortion facilities have shut down, and over 4,000 babies have been saved because of this international prayer campaign.
  • Lose your voice.  Participate in the Silent Day of Solidarity in October and get your friends to participate, too.  Lives have been saved and hearts have been changed during this event in the past years.  Click the link for info! (It is legal to do this at school as long as it isn’t disruptive.  If you have problems, contact the Alliance Defense Fund.)
  • Post pro-life information online.  Update your Facebook profile picture to a pro-life graphic, or post links on your status about fetal development.  The Endowment for Human Development is an incredible website loaded with information about prenatal life.  Share it!
  • Volunteer.  Find a local pregnancy center in your area and ask them how you can assist them, even for a short while.  Any little bit helps.
  • Collect items to donate.  Contact church staff and request to have a donation drive at your church—ask people to donate new or gently used baby and maternity items so you can collect and take them to a local pregnancy center in your area.  Accept money donations, too!
  • Use signs and stickers.  Put a pro-life sign in your front yard at home.  Put a bumper sticker on your car with a loving pro-life message on it.  You never know what kind of difference you can make with something so simple.
  • Attend rallies and marches.  Go online and see if there is a local Rally or March for Life (like the one in DC) near you in January.  If it is further away, gather some friends and make a road trip out of it!  (Make shirts or bring signs to represent your school!)
  • Give out pro-life information.  Education is the key to ending abortion.  Teaching others about fetal development and how abortion can harm women is pivotal.  Make fliers and pamphlets with information about unborn children and what happens during abortion procedures.  (It is legal to do this at school as long as classes are not disrupted.  If you have problems, contact the Alliance Defense Fund.)

Pro-life youth helped set a record turnout at the 2011 West Coast Walk for Life in San Francisco, CA.

When we outwardly express our passion to protect the unborn and help pregnant women in need, we are proving that our generation is the one that will one day end legal abortion.  We are our nation’s future lawmakers, doctors, and leaders of tomorrow, and we are pro-life!

  • Anonymous

    It is great to see all the things that pro-life youth can do! Thanks for the list.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lynn-Andrews/100000259425307 Lynn Andrews

    You left out one thing. Pro-life youth need to educate themselves so they can be involved. Strart by going to http://www.LifeNews.com

  • http://profiles.google.com/maraudertheslashnymph Marauder The Slash Nymph

    Collecting stuff to bring to pregnancy centers is a great idea. Note to teenagers: Wal-Mart and Target usually have baby clothes on clearance for just a few bucks (I’ve seen onesies at one dollar). Even if you don’t organize a drive and get donations from other people, it’s not hard to take the money you’d usually spend on snack food or iTunes or whatever and buy something for a pregnancy center.

    Also, consider learning how to knit! Once you’ve gotten just a basic knit stitch down, you can knit a baby blanket. I figured out hats recently and I’ve made over thirty. (Now I just have to get a ride at the right time and actually donate them…)

  • Vitalsigns

    Terrific column, Jennie. Practical, inspirational, effective. I’ve linked to the column from Vital Signs Blog and Free Republic. I hope it gets passed around a lot…including to church youth directors.

  • Momofmany

    Can I offer some more suggestions? Help out a mom with young children. An hour to work on a project or cook dinner while someone entertains your wee ones is a wonderful way to support those living in the trenches. or visit the elderly who are often lonely and forgotten. You never know what pearls of wisdom you’ll walk away with

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  • Jonathan Darnel

    The best form of pro-life work I have ever encountered (and the one that is most neglected) is when we go out to the streets and actually talk to people about what we believe.  Most pro-lifers are terrified about doing this, but how in the world do we think we are going to change the culture if we never actually get around to speaking with the other side?  Created Equal, Center for Bioethical Reform and Justice for All are three groups taking this approach, and I have seen first hand how minds can be opened and hearts melted.  It stops abortion long before abortion is even contemplated.  And don’t be afraid of ticking people off in the short run.  No truth-teller is instantly popular, and you don’t need to be popular to be effective.

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  • Kenneth E. MacAlister Jr.

    This was an excellent column & one that made me look at my own past behavior toward those on the pro-abortion side of things. One suggestion that should have been made is for pro-lifers like myself to remember 1) God is sovereign & in total control, 2) God is the ultimate judge, not us, & 3) we are ALL, pro-abortion supporters & pro-lifers, sinners in need of Jesus Christ, the Savior God sent into this world to redeem all sinners if they accept God’s free gift of salvation. This includes those sinners who have had abortions, those who provide abortions, & all those who sit silently on the sidelines of this issue. Abortion on demand can be ended ONLY by God. ONLY God can change hardened hearts. Pray without ceasing for all involved in abortion on demand. Everything is possible with God, especially when we keep knocking through endless prayer. Thank you Jennie Stone for making me think & for being a vessel for God to speak to my heart. ay God go with you always!

  • pm8utler

    great article for all ages!