Apologizing for Troy’s chalked up sidewalks

Being pro-life should be about being part of the solution, not about creating more problems. I am pro-life, a view which a recent Gallup survey reports is shared by forty-six percent of American adults.

Being pro-life is not just about abortion, but about combating suicide, which the American Psychological Association says, “…is the third leading cause of death for young people ages 15 to 24.”

It also about making sure that society remembers their responsibility in caring for an endangered elderly or critically ill population never letting their lives be cut short by euthanasia or assisted suicide. Life is about the importance of every human breath from the first to the last.

I have spent years presenting as a keynote pro-life speaker, spending thousands of my own hard-earned dollars, and a great amount of time and effort for the cause. But I have never once used chalk or a superhydrophobic to write a pro-life message on a city sidewalk.

When my husband and I moved to Troy two years ago, I remember my first experience with the chalked up sidewalks downtown. I thought some mischievous adolescents must have really had a heyday, until I read the words, “Abortion kills,” “….”

Of course, pro-lifers are passionate about sparing innocent lives. Sadly, more than 56 million babies have been aborted since Roe vs. Wade legalized abortion on Jan. 22, 1973. Millions of other American women and men affected by abortion experience severe trauma from the emotional and even physical impact.

That’s why I authored the book, “Forgiven finding peace in the aftermath of abortion,” endorsed by modern pro-life father, the late Dr. John Willke. It was created as a tool for churches and crisis pregnancy centers to assist individuals wounded by abortion, and to advocate for those in crisis pregnancy to not choose abortion.

For decades, those ministering to the post-abortive with the message of healing and forgiveness, and those who fought against abortion, were two separate factions. In recent years, these two sides are gradually coming together. Still, every pro-life person looks and behaves differently, has varied political and religious beliefs, just like those of any other group. Often their only connector is a shared viewpoint that life is precious.

Although the majority of pro-lifers denounce violence of any kind, because their mission is all about love. “Speaking the truth in love,” a Bible verse, that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. modeled so courageously.

So, back to the chalk, we’re on the same side of the issue, but I am saddened by the controversy created by the Troy Stand True Pro-Life Outreach group. Is it their first amendment right to chalk up the streets whenever they want? I guess technically it is. Yet if all of us who have a zealous opinion about some other important subject got out the chalk, can you imagine what chaos that would create in our beautiful city?

As for the business owners who would most likely be ecstatic if the chalking stopped. One exceptionally insightful Troy businesswoman asked me what these chalking pro-lifers do to help others?

She has a great point because being pro-life should mean that you are willing to put your money, time, and effort into positively supporting life. For example, there is a

desperate need for more local crisis pregnancy centers to provide healthcare, diapers, baby items, and support to those in crisis pregnancy, and to offer counseling services to others wounded by abortion.

As a pro-lifer, I would like to personally apologize to those of you who have been negatively impacted by what a group of probably well-intentioned individuals do to share their message. Still I am ashamed that their inappropriate and selfish method has made you believe that all pro-lifers agree with what they are doing. We do not!

Christina Ryan Claypool is the author of Forgiven finding peace in the aftermath of abortion, and has been featured on CBN’s 700 Club and Joyce Meyer Ministries nationwide TV program. Contact her through her website at www.christinaryanclaypool.com