Created Equal, an Ohio-based pro-life group, will set up a “Jumbotron” television screen (nine feet by 12 feet) next to the Liberty Bell on Independence Mall from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to display a graphic anti-abortion video Friday.
Viewable online, the video begins with footage of Martin Luther King, Jr., and immediately goes on to graphic images of dismembered fetuses.
But local women’s health groups will also be present to diminish the impact the video will have on unsuspecting pedestrians.
“We’re not looking to escalate or amplify this group’s message at all,” said Debasri Ghosh, Director of Education and Communications at Women’s Way. “We are simply trying to position ourselves to be human trigger warnings trying to let people know that there is disturbing imagery ahead and they don’t need to be subjected to it.”
Ghosh said Women’s Way and the Women’s Medical Fund will position volunteers on the corners around the jumbotron warning people about the video, explaining to them what is going on and advising them on how to avoid it.
“People don’t deserve to be bombarded with graphic, traumatizing imagery, regardless of what your views are on reproductive choice,” Ghosh said.
“We will be at Independence Mall tomorrow to connect with those who have come to the park to enjoy and learn from the historical sites. We want to remind passersby that abortion is an integral part of comprehensive health care for women,” said Susan Schewel, executive director of the Women’s Medical Fund in an email. “Because we can never walk in someone else’s shoes, we hope that each woman is able to make her own personal decisions about whether or when to have children. She should be able to do so without interference from politicians or from those who would seek to stigmatize the safe and legal medical procedure of abortion.”
Volunteers from the groups will also be ready to answer questions about reproductive health and counter claims made by the Created Equal group.
Created Equal regularly stage events at cities and college campuses nationwide in which they display graphic images of fetuses.
Members of the group arrived in Philadelphia today and posted pictures on their Facebook of a prayer session they held outside the former Gosnell clinic at 38th and Lancaster.
The National Parks Service is obligated by law to allow their demonstration on First Amendment grounds.