MS not a battleground for Planned Parenthood

By: Taylor Lewis and Rebecca DeLuna

Oxford, Miss. – Trying to keep up momentum from the last anti-abortion rally, Eric Scheidler, executive director of the Pro-life Action League, has set Feb. 11, 2017 as the date for the next nationwide rally.

The anti-abortion rally in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 27 drew an estimated 500,000 people, according to USA Today. The nationwide rally on Feb. 11 is expected to gather crowds similar in size.

According to Amy Lewis, Executive Director of External Affairs for Plan Parenthood Greater Memphis Region, many Plan Parenthood supporters participated in the women’s march in Washington, D.C.

“We sent a strong message that millions of people across this country are prepared to fight attacks on reproductive health care, abortion services, and access to Planned Parenthood health centers,” Lewis said.

Scheidler referring to the upcoming anti-abortion rally, “So far we have 163 rallies taking place in 43 states, so it’s really hard to guess the amount of people that will attend,” said Scheidler. “We expect tens to thousands of people to come out in protest and we’re working hard to get the word out.”

According to Scheidler, three organizations are the main collaborators on the Protest Plan Parenthood effort and the nationwide rally taking place on Feb.11: Pro-life Action League, Created Equal based in Ohio, and Citizens for Pro-life Society based in Michigan.

“Those three groups have joined together with the collation of over 60 Pro-life groups around the country that are part of this effort,” Scheidler said.

Despite such a large projection of crowds and an increase in promoting of such rallies, there are currently no rallies scheduled in Mississippi for Feb. 11. The sole location of Planned Parenthood in Miss. is in Hattiesburg.

The battle for and against Planned Parenthood has intensified in recent weeks and with rally crowds growing in size, all Mississippians can do is watch from the sidelines or travel to the battleground.

Although there are no rallies planned to take place in Miss. on Feb. 11, “individuals can apply to be a Pro-Life rally leader at or can attend a rally in a nearby state,” Scheidler said.

Ole Miss Rebels for Life, a UM student organization that focuses on pro-life efforts among the student body and Oxford community, attended the Washington rally, but is not planning on attending any rallies on Feb. 11.

Page Lagarde, a junior at UM, was one of several UM students who attended the anti-abortion rally in Washington with the Ole Miss Rebels for Life.

“It was an amazing experience to march alongside an estimated 500,000-800,000 other people who all share the same fundamental conviction — that every person deserves the right to life, including the unborn,” Lagarde said in an email describing the rally.

“We remain committed to delivering vital health care services and education to women, men, and young people, no matter what,” Lewis defended.


Eric Scheidler

(630) 896-1200

Page Lagarde

(251) 454-5543

Amy Lewis

(901) 725-3051


What Works Assignment #1

When scrolling through the many political-oriented articles on CNN’s website, I stumbled across something that caught my eye. I was looking for any article that didn’t have to do with Trump and his latest executive orders because I wanted to highlight news that was being overshadowed. The article I found was on CNN and entitled “Campus rape stats ‘misleading,’ says book author”. This article really caught me off guard because Ole Miss just recently released their 2016 crime statistics, which included rape allegations. To think that across the nation many college crime reports exaggerated rape allegations was something I wasn’t expecting. If anything, I’d expect campus’ to be lessening that number, not inflating it.

When reading through the article, I found the lead to be a hard news lead, which I don’t think really fits with this story. I think this story could’ve been much more impactful with a soft news lead. The author pulls the reader in with a slight “shock factor” by telling them that these national campus rape statistics are ‘misleading’. The author of the article shows how the book author seems to be “siding” with the rapists, which I think brings the reader in because it is opposite of the status quo.

I think the larger context of this story is that maybe all the stories on campus rape are blown out of proportion due to misleading statistics. This statement is especially troubling for me as a college-aged woman and is so dis-heartening to think that this book author feels that way towards rapists. I would’ve told this story differently because I am a woman that has seen how rape in college effects young men and woman. This article is missing the emotion that surrounds rape for both the victims and the accused. Instead, I would’ve told a story, not just delivered news. The book author provides some new insights to the issue, but I still feel like the author of the article should’ve done a better job at providing accurate statistics if others were so “misleading”.

I went looking for an article that stood out from the politicized ones, but this article on campus rape angered me just as much. I think that the book author’s perspective is interesting, but I’m disappointed that the article author didn’t provide new statistics, more perspectives. I feel that the author should’ve gone more in-depth with the effects and realities of campus rape.