Southworth presented “Overcoming the Culture of Death” on Oct. 28 at St. Norbert College. His talk was sponsored by Campus H.E.R.O. (Human rights Education and Relief Organization), the college’s student pro-life group. For the second consecutive year, the group displayed a “Cemetery of Innocence” on campus featuring blue and pink flags to represent the 3,660 abortions in the United States each day. A prayer service followed Southworth’s presentation.
Efforts to change Wisconsin’s legislation would fail, Southworth added.
“There are a large number of Wisconsin pro-life Democrats who not only vote pro-life, but are advocates,” he said. “It will stay on the books, but those people choosing abortion will go to other states. Abortion clinics will pop up on state lines.”
Southworth explained that Roe v. Wade covers a women’s right to choose, but legislators need to make personhood a law in order to truly stop abortion. He presented slavery and the Holocaust as historical examples where human beings were not recognized as persons, thus making their rights and lives expendable.
“If there is no personhood, there is no protection,” said Southworth. “Many people believe that Hitler talked about the Jews as non-humans. That’s not the case. Laws were adopted to strip personhood away from the Jews.”
Southworth also discussed the targets of abortion supporters. Eighty percent of Planned Parenthood clinics are in minority neighborhoods, he said.
“The leading cause of death among blacks is abortion,” said Southworth. “One out of every two black children will be aborted.”
Southworth, a captain in the Wisconsin National Guard, made national headlines in 2005. While on duty in Iraq in 2003, he volunteered at the Mother Teresa Orphanage in Baghdad where he met a 9-year-old boy who had cerebral palsy and could not walk. An Iraqi police officer had brought the boy to the orphanage after finding him on the street, when the child was only 3 or 4 years old. Southworth made an immediate connection with the child. He was later informed that the boy would soon be placed in a government-run home. His future safety was in question, so Southworth decided to adopt him. The process was difficult, but early in 2005, Ala’a, now 15, became Southworth’s son. The story was featured on several national networks including CNN, MSNBC and Fox News. Southworth received a General MacArthur Leadership Award in 2005. Ala’a, a seventh grader in Mauston, Wis., accompanied his father to St. Norbert.
Solutions in the fight against abortion go beyond legislation, said Southworth.
“We need to change hearts and minds,” he said. “It’s about realizing that your child is special. Your child has God-given talents. Don’t abort your child.”