A message from the founder:
I’m just a girl…a girl from Missouri. You think, “What is some girl from Missouri going to say about a topic as divisive, political, and polarizing as abortion?”
Well, I want to talk about what we don’t say. I want to talk about our cultural shame associated with the topic of abortion. I want talk about why we whisper the “A Word” and sometimes use alternative “less vulgar” words in its place. I want to talk about feeling overwhelmed by the issue and ignoring it all at the same time. I want to talk about those of us in the middle, those of us who stay quiet and feel powerless.
The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any. – Alice Walker, author of “The Color Purple”
Believe it or not, our generation may not identify with the Republican Red or the Democratic Blue on this issue. We may identify with one, neither, or both, all at the same time. Red or Blue, we all agree that abortion is more of a political issue than a humanitarian one.
As a woman, I have often felt that abortion has become such a political issue that we, as a culture, have lost touch with the women facing the issue. We whisper the “A Word” and get squirmy when the topic surfaces. Abortion has sadly become and non-issue or a “top-shelf issue” that everyday people feel overwhelmed by. As a society, we take a “non-confrontational stance” and do nothing and hope that our friends, family, and daughters, are not affected. But, they are, we are. While Democrats and Republicans battle for choice and for life, women often suffer in silence. Our inaction and cultural paralysis only feeds the stigma, the guilt, the fear, the burden and the shame of the issue.
Is there common ground between the BLUE and the RED? Can we operate from a mindset of openness and acceptance of people from all walks of life? PRO-PURPLE believes we can and that we are much more the same than we are different.
After our PRO-PURPLE debut, I was approached by a woman I had never met before. The woman wore a sweet smile on her face and slight silver in her hair. The woman introduced herself in a way that solidified the purpose of our project, “Hello, I am Purple.” She shook my hand, and I smiled politely. I was curious and intrigued by her introduction. The woman continued, “All my life, I have struggled to find my place… You see, I had an abortion when I was 14 years old. My father arranged it, it was not acceptable back then. I remember it like it was yesterday… A nameless doctor, in the back of our family station wagon, in a bowling alley parking lot.” I swallowed hard, uncertain of where her personal story may go. She continued, “I never spoke of it again, not to my mother, not to my sister, not to my daughter (who later went on to have an abortion). Today, my shameful secret found a place.” Tears welled in her blue eyes, “After everything that had happened, I never felt that I could call myself pro-life. I was sure that I never wanted another young girl to endure that same shameful secret and frightening experience that I had. I saw value in being pro-life AND pro-choice, but I remained silent on the issue… Today, I found my place, I am PURPLE. I was purple all along. Purple runs through my veins.”
And, PRO-PURPLE was born.
Come on, WOMEN! When will we have enough? Abortion continues to polarize, divide, and destroy us. So afraid to utter the “A WORD.” Strangled by stigma, stereotypes, and shame. We sit idly by and politely quiet ourselves and hand over our trust and our bodies to politicians regarding our most prized possession, what makes us unique, our ability to procreate. So eager to be placed in nice, neat, uniformed boxes of intolerance and judgment of fellow women. Abortion is more than an “issue” discussed momentarily before presidential elections. Abortion is about us, our bodies, our girls, our women.
This is OUR issue, these are our people! We will not stand for division. We will not stand for intolerance of ourselves and our daughters. There is no debate. We are more powerful together. We will stop hating the “other side,” fighting our sisters, shaming women, and choose to be a part of the solution.
Every generation needs a new revolution. – Thomas Jefferson
Never ever depend on governments or institutions to solve any major problems. All social change comes form the passion of individuals. – Margaret Mead
When talking about abortion, it is clear, we need a place. A safe place, a planned place, a place of anonymity and a place of experience.