Tom Herring is vehemently opposed to the practice of abortion. So much so, that he, along with Western for Life, the group he’s president of, will be holding an anti-abortion demonstration next week. Last week, Mr. Herring contacted the AS Review to request publicity to notify, and even warn students of the graphic nature of the display. I had a chance to speak to Mr. Herring on Thursday and this is what he said about his display.
Michael Spier: So, what is the display all about? What should students expect to see?
Tom Herring: Students should expect to see just precisely what abortion is—what it does to the unborn baby. The display is graphic, it is indeed shocking, but the reason that it’s graphic and shocking is because abortion is graphic and shocking.
MS: What is the goal of your display?
TH: The goal of the display is to educate a largely apathetic public to the realities of a social mindset that allows legal abortion.
MS: Who should attend?
TH: I think everyone should attend, but I recognize that there are some who do not want to see what an abortion is. I respect their freedom and their sensitivities. I’m not out here to force anyone into looking at this display. On the other hand, I think this needs to be shown. I’m a firm believer in the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform’s stance. They say “America will not end abortion until America sees abortion.” The whole reason for this is simply that in the debate about abortion we can kind of get lost in the terminology and what we mean when we use the word abortion. It’s used a lot in terms of rights—women’s rights, reproductive rights, maybe the baby’s rights… We tend to lose sight of what we’re actually talking about. What this display will do will bring back the reality of what we’re actually talking about. We’re talking about taking the life of an unborn human being.
A lot of people would object to that. They would say it’s not even a person. I think these pictures [in the display] will show that [the fetuses] are people.
Another favorite quote of mine is by Dr. Seuss. He says, “A person is a person, no matter how small.” I think this display will confirm that.
MS: Who should look for an alternate route to classes?
TH: Maybe anyone with small children. They might think it better to avoid red square. It’s a traumatizing thing for a child to see dead people.
It’s up to the person’s discretion as to what they can handle. I invite everyone to come, but I understand that there are those who feel that they can’t handle that. It’s understandable.
MS: Why is your group planning such a graphic display, which may turn off some viewers, versus a more accessible demonstration?
TH: Our group does… we’ve had protests before, which are silent protests with text-only signs. No pictures at all, just text signs, and we think that has a definite role too. The graphic displays, yes, may turn away some people who find what we do repulsive. At the same time, I’m firmly convinced that this display will move students to the pro-life side. Move students to say that this moral wrong can never be a constitutional right.
MS: When is this happening?
May 2 and 3.