Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Anti-abortion protesters hold rally on campus, eliciting mixed reactions from students

Activists from the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform displayed graphic posters and handed out flyers on campus Wednesday as part of a two-day pro-life rally.

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated as of Feb. 29 to correct a misquote of Jeff Owen, and as of March 1 to remove and blur parts of some photos because of potentially triggering content.

On Wednesday, an organization from Ontario, Canada known as the Canadian Centre For Bio-Ethical Reform (CCBR), protested abortion on FAU’s Boca Raton campus. They set up in front of the College of Social Work and Criminal Justice building, displaying banners with graphic images of aborted fetuses and handed out pamphlets that read “Shouldn’t all human beings have human rights?” on the front.

According to the rally’s coordinator Vanessa Otten, with permission from the university, roughly 10 to 12 activists from CCBR started its setup on campus Tuesday morning around 8 a.m.. The rally will end on Thursday, Feb. 29.

“We are here to have conversations with Florida students about abortion; abortion is killing hundreds of pre-born human beings every day just in Florida. Our goal is to talk to people who either aren’t sure about abortion or think abortion is okay and try to persuade them why it isn’t,” Otten explained.

Canadian activist Jeff Owen says CCBR recognizes cases like sexual assault.

“We recognize that abortion is the direct and intentional killing of an innocent, living human and that this is a human rights violation. We know that parents can be faced with any number of overwhelming and incredibly challenging situations, like the horrific case of sexual assault. We in the pro-life movement want to work with these parents to navigate these unique situations, recognizing that we can never solve problems by killing innocent humans,” Owen wrote in a statement.

The organization’s website reflects this perspective.

“Human rights are for ALL human beings. These rights ought to begin when the human being begins. Three hundred abortions happen every single day. Canada has no restrictions. It’s time to end the killing,” reads the website’s landing page.

Numerous students walked past, and others engaged with the activists for minutes to hours, debating the morality of the topic.

Some, however, were not happy at all with the rally taking place on campus. Leslie Albert, an art major, was not pleased with the presence of an organization she believes is attempting to take control over women’s bodies.

“I think it is an abomination. If women want to have abortions or don’t want to, that is their personal choice. However, posting graphic images to create a propagandistic attitude toward women’s bodies is appalling and does not belong on campus,” Albert explained.

Students and pro-life activists in front of CCBR’s display on campus. (Poster images blurred as some photos may be triggering.)

Jason Steinfeld is a staff writer for University Press. For more information about this article or others, you can reach him via Instagram @jasonsteinfeld221 or email him at [email protected].

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