by Steven Ertelt
April 24, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Native American teenagers in South Dakota will be leading the way on Tuesday as tens of thousands of pro-life teens across the nation wear their pro-life t-shirts to school. The Indian teens will be sending a strong message to their tribal leader that they don’t favor her idea to built an abortion facility on their reservation.
"Native American teens in South Dakota are showing their support for the pro-life movement by participating in this year’s National Pro-life T-shirt Day," says Erik Whittington, who heads up the national project.
The national day tomorrow is a chance for teens in the Oglala Sioux Tribe to show their opposition to an idea by Tribal President Cecelia Fire Thunder, who wants to build an abortion business on tribal lands to get around a new South Dakota ban on abortions.
Whittington recently traveled there and met with pro-life teens who are excited about the opportunity to share their pro-life views.
"It is ironic that the pro-life teens we met were part of the same reservation where a Lakota woman recently pledged to have an abortion clinic built now that the state has outlawed the despicable practice," said Whittington. "This once again proves that America’s youth are solidly pro-life."
Students of all ages are invited to wear a pro-life t-shirt or to purchase and wear the official shirt.
This year’s campaign takes a page out of the playbook of those who back embryonic stem cell research, which destroys days-old unborn children. The military green shirts for the 2006 campaign feature the slogan, "Help Cure Abortion."
The back of the t-shirt explains that 1.2 million babies die annually from abortions and they’re available for just $5 — a price that fits into any student’s budget.
"Wearing a T-shirt with a pro-life message is about more than just making a statement. It presents the truth about the horrors of abortion, while at the same time offers hope for the future," said Whittington. "Pro-life T-shirts save lives."
Unfortunately, some teens have run into problems wearing their pro-life shirts.
Last year, in Des Moines, Iowa, two Roosevelt High School students say their First Amendment rights were violated when school officials told them to remove the shirts. Sisters Brittany and Tamera Chandler said they were threatened with suspension.
Tamera Chandler agreed to wear a sweatshirt over her shirt, but felt her rights had been violated.
"I was upset because they violated my rights, but I didn’t want any trouble because graduation’s right around the corner," she told the Des Moines newspaper.
This year, as in years past, pro-life teens have no legal reason to worry about repercussions from wearing a pro-life t-shirt as Whittington has enlisted a nationally renown pro-life law firm to help any student who runs into problems.
"As you might expect, there are some public school administrators who don’t quite know what to do when dozens-even hundreds-of their students show up for class wearing pro-life messages," said Whittington. "Some have even threatened students with detention, suspension and expulsion. However, the Constitution is on the side of free speech."
He indicated the Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center will again be available to assist any students who encounter problems with teachers or school officials.
Related web sites:
National Pro-Life T-SHirt Day –