I love my colleagues at ERI. We pride ourselves on innovation and flexibility, so you’ve probably noticed that we’re constantly experimenting with new arguments, formats, video styles, designs, etc. But here’s the thing: we’re a really small team, so when we determine we need a new strategy, a new program, or a new whatever, that means one of us has just gotta figure it out! We’re go-getters, so when we see something that needs to get done, we’ll find a way.
Category Archives: Practical Dialogue Tips
After going through the fire of 3,000+ conversations with pro-choice people, we’ve learned a lot of things that create an environment in the conversation where the other person is more likely to change their mind. These are some of those nitty-gritty dialogue tips.
Why I Changed My Pro-life Elevator Pitch—Repost
Editor’s note: This guest post by Muireann Lynch was originally published on the blog of The Minimise Project and can be found at this link.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
Have you ever heard of an elevator pitch? It’s where you try to condense a topic down to a few sentences that you can get across in three minutes or less. The idea is that you have a new business or product that you’re trying to pitch to a potential investor. They’re incredibly busy and you haven’t a hope of setting up a formal meeting, but you happen to bump into them in an elevator. You have a captive audience for the amount of time you’re both in the elevator – minutes, if even. You need to make your strongest case possible in a very short space of time. What do you say?
Managing Anger as a Pro-life Advocate
Estimated reading time: 10 minutes
I don’t think it’s controversial to say each person is more inclined to certain errors based on his or her personality and temperament. For example, an anxious person would likely be more inclined to passivity or inaction, while a more gregarious person might be less likely to choose to sacrifice interpersonal relationships even if confrontation is warranted. Personally, I struggle with the host of potential errors associated with anger.
Do you know why it’s a struggle, why I can’t just “be less angry”? It’s because, as a pro-life person living in contemporary America, anger makes sense! Anger is a logical, appropriate, and even necessary response, to some degree. Just because anger is also dangerous, because it requires walking a knife’s edge to avoid causing further harm, doesn’t make it inherently wrong. And therein lies the temptation.
But You’re a Privileged White Woman!
“No uterus, no opinion.” Yeah, we’ve all heard that one before. I spent years training my male pro-life club members how to respond to the charge that men shouldn’t have an opinion about abortion. It came up in every single outreach we did; I’d overhear my co-president Joshua or male club members like Oscar having to defend why they should even be allowed to open their mouths about this controversial topic in the first place.
But then something happened that I never saw coming: pro-choice people started telling ME that I shouldn’t be allowed to have an opinion about abortion. Um, I’m a woman! I have a uterus!! It took me a little time and a lot of clarification questions to figure out what was going on.
Estimated reading time: 12 minutes
I Don’t Care What You Call Me: Responding to “Anti-Choice”
Name-calling isn’t new. It’s been a classic bullying and teasing tactic amongst children for centuries, and while our education system tries to eradicate such childish behavior before adulthood, we’ve clearly failed on this one. If you’ve sneaked a peek at any social media website, you’ve certainly noticed that adults show about as much maturity as your average middle schooler in this department. The abortion debate, in particular, brings out the worst in people, and you can find a whole host of names and labels being thrown around from “anti-life” and “baby killers” on the one hand to “anti-woman” and “forced-birthers” on the other.
While few pro-choice people are actually using terms like “forced-birthers,” many have adopted the term “anti-choice” in order to avoid referring to us as standing for life. Many pro-life people have decided to reclaim the term in response, openly embracing their view as being “anti-the-choice-to-kill” or something like that. A few weeks ago, we received a comment on our YouTube Channel pointing out precisely that:
This comment really got me thinking: How should we respond when someone calls us “anti-choice?” When is it helpful to debate labels, and when is it really just a distraction from the issue at hand?