© Herald photo by Kevin Hampson.
Yvette Lavoie and Yvonne April, of the Prince Albert Right to Life Association, were at the Exhibition trade show on Thursday. Herald photo by Kevin Hampson.
Acrobats and animals performed on the Exhibition grounds Thursday, but visitors may have found a sobering message inside the Armoury building.
The Prince Albert Right to Life Association was one of many vendors and groups at the Summer Fair Trade Show, hosted by the Optimist Club.
Yvette Lavoie and Yvonne April sat quietly behind their table, which included life-sized models showing fetal development through the stages of pregnancy.
“It’s an awareness campaign on the preciousness of human life, from conception until death,” co-president Val Hettrick said over the phone.
There is a perception that an unborn baby is sub-human, or worthless, Lavoie and April said. They want to challenge that.
An unborn baby is a human life, and the mother has a responsibility to care for it, April said.
“Too many people take it for granted that if something’s in the way, you can just get rid of it.”
“They don’t want to take responsibility for the situation that they got themselves into in the first place,” she added.
The display included pamphlets encouraging modesty, chastity and foster parenting -- a much better alternative to abortion, Hettrick said.
The association is also part of the Jubilation Program, which provides support to pregnant girls and their families. What these young women need most is simply someone who will listen to them and care for them, Hettrick added.
“Yes, it’s easy to counsel a young girl to have an abortion. It’s also easy to feed her contraceptives up to her eyeballs. But if we really care about that girl, we’ll spend the time with her.”
“They need to understand that they have dignity and worth. They aren’t objects. They aren’t somebody’s toy. They’re worth something,” Hettrick said.
It’s easy to counsel a young girl to have an abortion ... But if we really care about that girl, we’ll spend the time with her Val Hettrick, co-president, P.A. Right to Life Association
The association also tries to counter the influence of pornography, which has entered mainstream culture through the Internet.
Studies suggest that children, on average, first view porn at the age of 11. This is causing terrible damage, Hettrick said.
“The reason porn is such a destructive thing is that it takes away that natural latency period, where kids are supposed to have the time to grow up.
“Plus it plants the idea that women are to be used as objects.”
The result, Hettrick said, is that children are taught that it’s normal to be promiscuous and girls have little sense of their own worth.
Hettrick said that Jubilation counsellors also make sure that girls who are considering abortion know what they are getting themselves into.
“We’re talking about an operation that literally rips the baby out of the womb,” she said. “They have no idea.”
“(And) they often don’t realize it’s a baby, because they’re told it’s not one. They’re 15. They believe what the doctors tell them.”
Pro-abortionists often scoff at the suggestion that a pregnant woman is carrying a baby, saying that it is merely a fetus or a blob of cells. To that, Hettrick replies:
“If that ‘clump of cells’ growing in the mother is not a baby, then what is it? It’s not a tumor.”
By the time most mothers decide to get an abortion, their baby (or fetus) already has a heartbeat, Hettrick said.
According to babycenter.com, a website for soon-to-be parents, “You may be able to hear -- and see -- your baby’s heartbeat for the first time when you’re about eight weeks pregnant if you have an early ultrasound.”