Crises and Pro-life Instinct: Coronavirus

The most recent variety of the coronavirus, Covid-19 or the Wuhan virus or China flu etc. has swept us up into an international health emergency.

Though the facts seem to be as much about hype, panic (a run on toilet paper?) and politics (demagoguing) as it is about health, one thing for certain, it has focused us all on our most common denominator: our fragile humanity.

As the “United States of Entertainment”, perhaps more than any other nation, Americans are willing to put significant effort into attaining entertainment. So, for instance, when your favorite NBA team has its game interrupted by a health emergency, you’d think folks would riot. Yet, refreshingly, everyone complies in a thoughtful if not sarcastic way.

The owner of the Dallas Mavericks was quoted as saying “You know what, it’s really not about basketball or money…you think about your family… Because now, it’s much more personal.”  

When crisis strikes and our family is at risk, what really matters is painfully evident.

A Cardinal was quoted as saying “something changed: all of the sudden, we started to care for every life. … We have become lovers of life. …since the virus began spreading in Italy, no one is having discussions about the right a person with Down Syndrome has to live or if it is up to the expectant mother to choose to abort it. Neither are Italians talking about euthanizing the elderly, and there are no ‘equality’ marches that are really against equality and against freedom. People don’t talk about abortion, or about euthanasia, because everyone is talking for life,” he said. “We are looking for vaccines, we are taking precautions to guarantee that we can save lives.”

The pro-life movement has always been about respect for all life; it has always stated that no inconvenience is too great to nurture life – whether in the womb or in the frailty of sickness and age. All life matters because it is our most common and “humanizing” bond that will guide us through tough times.

When a member of this humanity is at risk, the pro-life movement speaks.

It is in times like this that we realize that we are all pro-life.

Answered: The Secret to Pro-life Outreach

Ten years of hard, determined and focused pro-life effort has given us insight as to what works and what doesn’t.

Success in pro-life terms is defined in different ways; funding cuts to abortion providers, education, lobbying, activism, social media outreach etc.  All are good and needed to battle the dominant culture that drives disrespect toward human life.

But what if someone wanted to know how they individually could make a real difference?  What is the shortcut, the hack or the secret to bypass the confusion and make an impact personally?

Here is the secret answered: define your terms and give.

Define your terms. 

“Pro-life” ultimately means the personal choice one makes to either parent or place for adoption instead of an abortion.  It is a choice of life over termination.  The loss of innocent life is the ultimate failure.  Therefore, it follows that the saving of an innocent life is the ultimate measure of success in the pro-life movement.   

Give. 

Give time, funds and importantly prayer.  Giving of your time and treasure to the organizations that directly serve women and families is the most effective way for you to take part in the pro-life movement.  It puts you on the frontlines and makes your contribution immediately felt in the lives of those living in your neighborhood where you live. 

Fifty dollars and a heartfelt prayer is absolutely the hack of all hacks to resolve the riddle of a consumer society inconvenienced by an ill-timed pregnancy.  A sacrifice that is financial, personal and spiritual cuts through the clutter and will strengthen hearts to embrace life…  We know because we have seen it work thousands of times!

To paraphrase a past president, JFK, “ask not what your pro-life movement can do for you; rather, ask what you can do for the pro-life movement“.  The secret to pro-life success is that you first define your terms and then you get involved with the nearest organization that serves women and families directly.

Options United was founded to directly assist these original warriors in the pro-life movement – the pregnancy centers.  It is our belief that by bolstering outreach to women as well as the pregnancy centers that serve them, we can encourage thousands to choose life. 

This has turned out to be true – we have under our belts 10 years assisting thousands with a decision for life: adoption or parenting!

We believe that more choices for life will eventually turn our country pro-life.  We believe personal, spiritual and sacrificial participation is more powerful than the materialism that surrounds this issue. 

Stay tuned for more news on new developments on this topic in the coming months.

Pro-Life Hope & Slavery: The Principle of Natural Human Equality



The pro-life struggle to defend all innocent human life is often compared to the struggle against slavery in the 19th Century. It is a valid analogy.

Viewing a slave as “not fully human” animated those who wanted to keep slavery.  It is the same argument used by those who advocate for abortion.

All human life is of equal value and, as history proves, requires us to struggle for this right to life and equality. Two centuries ago a powerful minority deemed themselves superior to fellow human beings and fought a war to hold onto their way of life that included the institution of slavery.

Lessons from the past should prevent our nation from future mistakes and pain. As pointed out in this article, the principle of natural human equality eventually worked its way through the hearts and minds of the Founding Fathers and into our legal system. It provided the clear-cut reason as to why slavery must be ended.

Our forefathers knew how to work the levers of the government they established and toward a just and healthy nation. We should learn from them; to continue the fight for justice using this same principle of equality.

As the son’s and daughter’s of liberty,  Options United and the pro-life movement are animated by this principle of equality of all human life.  We should use every tool of modern science and technology to mobilize our just and urgent cause: all men are created equal.

As a strange side note, while we struggle with this dark legacy of Roe v. Wade, the New York Times seems to re-hash history and denigrate our nation’s founding that was based on this principle of all people being equal. One must wonder why tear down a noble legacy… The powerful minority should be called out again.  History tends to repeat itself.

In the Creator we trust.

Creating New Structures in the Digital Age: Why the Pro-Life Movement Must Create a Strong Online Presence

The pro-life movement must endure; its values and members are the salt of the earth.

To last and succeed, the pro-life movement should learn from Big Tech. Pro-life organizations currently utilize technology only to their level of comfort rather than their full potential. That needs to change. Here’s how…

All pro-life groups are at the mercy of ever-changing digital marketing and the evermore hostile Big Tech that happily hamper results. Sticking to the old ways of doing business will not improve the situation: local branding, operating as a stand-alone organization while disregarding the strengths of the rest of the vibrant movement, and adding services without expanding the customer base with new technology.

Relying on a nice website or store front with pleasing fonts and color palettes are not the future.

The future belongs to collaborative initiatives such as common marketing and scheduling, collaborating data, one unified messaging system, leveraging budgets, portal sites to promote all brands, and shared tools to increase results. To achieve these goals, the pro-life movement must begin utilizing economies of scale afforded by digital technology and eliminate the duplication of efforts.  

Direct service and marketing organizations should think outside of their brand or bricks-and-mortar and more in terms of leveraging assets and resources digitally.

That means viewing the work not as a product but as a service platform. This conceptual change will permit more robust efficiency within the movement. Developing a true Digital Age ecosystem will make the movement capable of carrying more services and messages that impact more people and organizations. A common strategy that allows for diversity of approaches is a model that we should strive for together. 

Working in unison has always been a challenge for the pro-life movement. Independent groups working in their own geographic or brand silo might possibly be a cause for the movement’s durability, but it certainly limits the impact of its efforts. If the basic goal of the movement is to serve more people with life-affirming assistance, then we should seek out strategic weaknesses like fearmongering about legal risk or viewing the struggle through one point on the map – one organization’s budget in one 15-mile radius is nothing compared to the cultural problem the pro-life movement faces. Today technology affords us the ability to harness diverse strategies with big impact while leveraging many budgets aimed at a common goal. We should take advantage of it. By doing so we could assist perhaps millions more people. 

Finally, it is true in the nonprofit world that some organizations have more funding than program. That is, they can talk a good program but may lack the results to be more effective.  These organizations are sometimes dubbed “a mile wide and an inch deep,” appearing large without achieving lasting results. 

If an organization leader feels this dilemma and sees technology as a possible solution, this reality should open the door for merging organizations or at least seeking a deep collaboration. Adapting new technology and its management requires an influx of capital and resources. That capital could be generated by simply merging two similar nonprofits or programs which would allow for the blossoming of more results with the same donor funding. Technology makes this more possible now.

Mergers in the nonprofit world are not as common as in the for-profit arena given in part that the emotion of a nonprofit ministry can be more intense and the vision of the founder possibly overly constricting. The downside is that, if not done correctly, both organizations could suffer lasting harm. The upside is that donors would be energized with a new development and more people would be impacted by the pro-life movement.  

Donors should take note. A strategic shift to technology integration is the future. No change takes place in the nonprofit world without visionary donors who possess a drive for efficiency. Pro-life leaders will take heed if you push for efficient results, innovating for the 21st century. 

Fear and insecurity mute both our strength (respect for all life) and the delivery system (digital technology). We should not fear change but permit technology to enhance our impact. Our overall mission is bigger than one organization or a small geographic radius. We should seek creative expansion with the tools of the Digital Age.  

“Big Tech” and the Pro-Life Movement: Setting the Example of Human Dignity in a Secular World

The Information Technology sector (Big Tech) is the largest sector of our economy, worth more than 7 TRILLION dollars in the US alone. The 2016 election cycle and Trump’s triumph caused a panic and pullback from the largest members in this sector. Motivated now by fear of others’ values and politics, Big Tech wants to censor and control users’ speech, as well as manipulate and use their data irrespective of their concerns and objections.

In contrast, the pro-life movement is motivated by respect for others without qualification. It exemplifies the opposite set of values, free from control and manipulation.

Where Big Tech uses people as a commodity, the pro-life movement sees people as individual, free subjects – each a gift from God.

In an increasingly secular world, it is easier to see a person as a product rather than a subject with inviolable dignity from a Creator. Unfortunately, today belief in a deity as Creator of human life makes some people uncomfortable. It shouldn’t. This belief in a Creator guarantees respect for every individual. If we all have one common origin, we are equal and therefore possess the same rights. This basic logic is foundational to a free and prosperous world.

Big Tech had once made the promise that the internet and technology would democratize information. Sadly, the internet and its facilitators have lost their way in that original mission, unnerved by a few setbacks. For the benefit of a healthy society and a free market, technology must return to this original promise. That’s a tall order. Yet, it can be done by learning from the pro-life movement.

The pro-life movement has staying power. It’s the largest social and civil rights moment in history. The secret sauce is constant openness to others. In spite of the daunting task, naysayers, accusers, enemies, obstacles, and lack of funding, the pro-life movement persists in being open to all no matter what. The movement unwaveringly toils with the legal and moral levers of our society, deftly navigating them in order to pursue its quest to protect life at all stages. This example of defending the weakest – every person – is a national treasure.

The lesson here is that the movement fights what it sees as evil while exercising care for others. That is the mark of legitimate and authentic quality – next level, in fact. The pro-life movement separates the act from the actor and responds with love and patience. Instead of rage, it accepts legal reality while advocating for change through direct service, legal, political, and moral channels. It faces what it considers abhorrent with calm respect.

Respect for life is not just a slogan but the movement’s motivation.

Big Tech should take note. Tech operates in a praxis of bid, buy, sell, profits, politics, and ideology. It fears losing business and its advantage in the marketplace. However, post 2016, when fear moves away from strictly business concerns and toward the fear of fellow citizens’ views and beliefs, their actions are dangerously wrong and misplaced.

Big Tech must look to the pro-life movement to find a more wholesome formulation of citizenship that respects all life and viewpoints. And urgently. With the advent of artificial intelligence, automation, robotics, data mining, etc. the stakes are higher than ever before. People are not mere cogs of a machine or products in a consumer world. Each is a possessor of rights.

Fair treatment is really the only true reason we have business enterprise. Profit and power are the root of evil. Respect for life is the anecdote.

While it is true that Big Tech is not a charity or ministry, excluding or disrespecting others on a grand scale through viewpoint discrimination paralyzes debate and the free exchange of ideas, devaluing a person arbitrarily. Devaluing a person opens the door to disrespecting and censoring their views, quickly followed by mistrust, fear, mistreatment, and even violence.

That is why censorship, filter bubbles, shadow bans, manipulation of ads and search results, and the pursuit of profit while treating people as inhuman is bad business and bad policy. These unfair practices are not based on respect or freedom, nor do they promote a free market.

The pro-life movement’s longevity is due to its ability to overcome hardship, not with fear, but with openness to all. Likewise, Big Tech should face its fear of others’ beliefs and politics. It should bravely treat all as equals and respect their users’ inherent rights.

Instead of censoring pro-lifers, Big Tech should allow their ideas to flourish or fail in the free market without impediments or onerous rules. If Big Tech were more like the pro-life movement, more solicitous and respectful of others, the Digital/Information Age could then live up to its name.

This does not mean Big Tech has to become “pro” anything. It’s just good civics. America’s success both legally and financially is based on its respect for people and their civil rights. Tech would do well to remember that this foundation – acknowledging and protecting the dignity of each person – is what allowed their industry and every other institution to flourish in the United States.