I’m Skylark, a self-described YAR who found this place totally by accident. I was looking for info on Jerry Jenkins coming to Kidron Mennonite because I’m the newspaper reporter who covers Kidron. This was the first hit in a Google search. Hi Tom. :-) I got sucked into Tom’s post about his concerns over Jerry Jenkins’ visit. One post lead to another, and I really like this place.
A little about me: I’m 23, female, Mennonite, pacifist, and vegetarian. Over the summer I followed the progress of Bike Movement (Denver Steiner and I go to the same church), and of course I covered it when BikeMovement came to Kidron Mennonite in August. It seems like almost anything that happens event-wise in Kidron is at that church. :-P Not that there are many other options for venues. That put me in contact with an area Christian young adult group. I’ve been a part of the group since. I’ve totally gotten on board with Denver’s push at church to create safe spaces where young adults and others can ask “unsafe” questions and explore issues we would otherwise ignore in favor of more sanitized church activities. My mentor and I have gotten to know each other a lot better lately, and we’ve known each other since I was 13, so that’s pretty cool.
As I was telling one of the other young adults last night, I interviewed three people this week who made me very depressed for the pro-life movement. (I also talked about it on my Xanga blog, but you have to have a screenname and logged in to view my blog.) The people are three middle-class white men over 60 who went to the Walk For Life in DC in January. I internally grimaced when I first saw them because I knew their demographics perpetuate the stereotype of “Who is pro-life.” Unfortunately, as they talked, they only dug themselves deeper into that stereotype. They see the issue as black-and-white, baby-centric and almost completely ignoring the needs of women who opt for abortions. They rarely, if ever, speak with anyone who holds views different than theirs on this, and they don’t know anyone who’s had an abortion. While they said they were surprised at how many young people and women were at the Walk, I had to think, “Are these three men the best my county has to offer in terms of pro-life advocates?” Without me even asking, they insisted pro-choicers have no place calling themselves Catholic. They didn’t want the church to kick out pro-choicers. They want pro-choicers to refuse the sacraments themselves and leave. No room for discussion here.
I just wish pro-lifers and pro-choicers could work together to reduce the factors that lead to abortions, like poverty and abusive relationships. Most pro-choicers don’t LIKE abortion; it’s the lesser of several evils for them. Why can’t we use what we have in common to help out vulnerable people rather than fighting each other? Legislation would not “cure everything” which these three men seemed to think it would.
It’s been on my mind for the past few days. Hopefully, other people of the “middle ground” (or the Anabaptists’ Third Way?) exist.
Good to meet all of you, and I look forward to many insightful discussions.
Welcome to YAR, Skylark. Its great to have a journalist join us.
The question of ideological isolation is a big one. These days its way too easy to only talk to people you agree with. You’d think the internet would help with this, but I think many times people have adapted by only visiting website that will reinforce views they already have.
On the issue of pro-choice and pro-life. I’ve been impressed with the work Sojourners has done on looking at the issue of abortion with a focus on how to reduce abortions and support pregnant women.