Pro-Life TV Commercials Reduce Abortion in Arizona, Elsewhere
by Maria Gallagher
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
August 30, 2003
Phoenix, AZ (LifeNews.com) — Commercials have been used to sell everything from milk to political candidates. Now, Arizona Right to Life is running ads aimed at selling people on the idea that life is sacred and should be protected at its earliest stages.
The statewide pro-life group has just unveiled a new ad campaign
designed to persuade people that abortion is not the answer to an unexpected pregnancy.
"Through the use of special effects, powerful images and persuasive
language, these commercials demonstrate our cultural obligation to preserve the sacredness of human life," said Shane Wikfors, Executive Director of Arizona Right to Life.
Wikfors hopes to begin airing the commercials within the next month. They were created with the aid of VirtueMedia, an ad agency that has been particularly adept at crafting commercials with a pro-life message.
"VirtueMedia’s commercials have enabled us as an organization to take our pro-life message to the public arena in a way we have never been able to before," said Wikfors. "(VirtueMedia’s) work is a labor of love and a gift to the pro-life community. Every pro-life organization should be taking advantage of VirtueMedia’s work."
The non-profit commercial producer has a history of working with pro-life groups in an attempt to bring a life-affirming message into the marketplace.
For instance, for years, VirtueMedia has worked in cooperation with groups such as the Elliot Institute, CPC of Greater Phoenix, P.A.S. Counseling, and America’s Pregnancy Helpline to offer hope and healing to women suffering from the trauma of post-abortion syndrome. VirtueMedia has produced television and radio ads advertising a toll-free help line as well as the Elliot Institute’s website. The advertising won the Communicators’ National
Award of Distinction.
Four years ago, pro-life groups teamed up with VirtueMedia for an ad campaign that saved an estimated 3,300 babies from abortion.
In Maricopa County, Arizona, the spots aired in both English and Spanish, reaching more than 93% of the households in the area. As a result, babies were saved at an average cost of only $35 per life, according to VirtueMedia. While the campaign began in Phoenix, it has now reached some 1,500 markets nationwide, in addition to markets in several Spanish-speaking countries.
VirtueMedia also holds the distinction of producing what are believed to have been the first television public service announcements on the link between abortion and breast cancer. Dozens of studies have demonstrated this link, but many women seeking abortions have not been told of its existence. The abortion-breast cancer PSAs a currently running in a number of media
markets in the U.S. and in foreign countries.
VirtueMedia has also produced a TV ad called "Humane Humanity," which talks about the terrible mistake of treating people as if they were less than human because they were unknown, unplanned, and helpless. The text of the ad includes this line: "…to disregard the value of human life, whether through hate or indifference…is wrong." The ad goes on to say, "As Americans, let’s cherish the sanctity of human life, because we know how it feels when others
treat us as less than human."
VirtueMedia’s new commercials, "Vanished," "Milk Cartons," and "History Lesson," emphasize the tragedy of people who are "missing" because of the plague of abortion and the painful lessons which history teaches us about indiscriminate killing.
"My heart is touched every time I see the commercials." Wikfors said. "There is no excuse why pro-life organizations should not be using mass media to influence the minds and hearts of their communities."
The commercials are part of VirtueMedia’s mission: to create educational media campaigns that reinforce family values, the dignity of life, faith, and compassion. VirtueMedia notes that its commercials "offer education and resources to those in greatest need of hope."
Currently, Arizona Right to Life is engaged in a fundraising drive designed to raise the $40,000 needed to put the pro-life commercials on the air.
"We all know that the soul of this country and the lives of unborn babies are at stake in this culture war. We can no longer afford to use small strategies and tactics if we plan to win each battle. Our opponents are well-funded and well-equipped and so must we (be)," Wikfors said.
For more information about Arizona Right to Life’s VirtueMedia ad campaign, contact the organization’s office at (602) 285-0063.