Pro-Life Advocates Take Over NARAL Senate Photo Petition

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 26, 2011   |   4:00PM   |   Washington, DC

NARAL organizers yesterday announced a photo petition campaign to the U.S. Senate to show top lawmakers what pro-abortion Americans look like, but the web site was quickly overtaken by pro-life advocates who posted their own photos.

The pro-abortion organization set up an email address to submit photos of abortion activists with their pre-printed NARAL signs on their Flickr account at and the group encouraged their supporters to email pictures that would automatically post to the account with them holding the pro-abortion sign.

“Why?” NARAL told its supporters in an email, “Because “Anti-choice senators are preparing to move the War on Women forward with legislation that will deny women access to everything from birth control to cancer screenings to the right to choose safe, legal abortion. Join our photo petition today by Friday, May 27. ”

As pro-life activists got word of the effort, they quickly flooded the account with pro-life photos replete with signs, banners and pictures of unborn children at various stages of fetal development. Eventually, NARAL officials began the painstaking task of manually having to delete every pro-life photo from among the hundreds submitted to the account.

Timmerie Millington of The Survivors was one of the pro-life advocates to submit pictures — “Post your pro-life pictures!  I’ve sent over 20 in myself” — she told friends in an email. “Pro-life pictures are dominant, and NARAL is having a fit trying to remove them as quickly as possible,” she said.

Eventually, NARAL changed the submission email to [email protected] with a hastily sent message on Twitter, “Email address has changed for NARAL’s campaign.”

NARAL also promised it would remove the pro-life photos from the photo montage it plans to submit to the Senate:  “Thx 4 msgs of support re anti-choice photos on our flickr acct. We’ll get it taken care of & still deliver our photo petition 2 the Senate.”

Susan Tyrrell of Bound for Life weighed in on the flurry of activity.

“It seems pro-life readers believe that all’s fair in Life and war, so they’ve gone for the visual battle, at a pro-choice agency’s accidental invitation,” she said. “What happens when you make a website public is that the public responds. Instead, pro-lifers decided to take the opportunity to launch its own visual campaign back. Thanks to NARAL’s open invitation, pro-lifers started uploading photos.”

“It’s an interesting irony that the page used to support abortion rights could impact a woman not to abort. The power of visual images is strong. Ironically, NARAL is probably realizing that now too. As of this afternoon, the site was still being inundated with pro-life signs and campaigns,” she said.

Jill Stanek, the pro-life blogger, has pointed out that some of the signs submitted by pro-life advocates are ones pro-abortion activists would post if they were honest.

As of press time, the NARAL account is still filled with numerous pro-life pictures, including on the front page.