Pro-life students at a Catholic university in Missouri learned a lot about hate and even more about sticking to their principles this week after multiple students at Saint Louis University vandalized a display set up to commemorate the babies killed by abortion.
Students for Life participated in the Cemetery of the Innocents project, in which they created a display out of flags in the shape of a cross, according to Young America’s Foundation. The flags were designed to represent abortions amounting to about 800,000 babies — the number killed by abortion in the U.S. in 2019, Fox News reported.
It did not take long before hatred showed its face.
“Within a few hours of it going up, we walked by and someone had torn down the signs we had up alongside it,” said Isabelle Hotard, president of Students For Life at the college, according to KMIZ-TV.
Vandalism continued, she said.
“I was very surprised how emboldened people are to trample on other people’s stuff and they truly seem to think we’re in the wrong 100 percent and we’re doing something that hurts other people, and it’s kind of heartbreaking to see people believe that about us, because that’s not what we’re trying to do at all.”
Hotard told Fox News that the student body at Saint Louis University is “extremely left-leaning.”
“It is a bit of an echo chamber on our campus. Our entire campus is extremely left-leaning, so you just find a lot of people, particularly among the students in positions of authority, who will be far more tolerant of left-leaning beliefs rather than right-leaning beliefs,” Hotard said.
Student Nick Baker videoed his confrontations with the foul-mouthed students who were vandalizing the display.
WARNING: The following video contains vulgar language that some viewers will find offensive.
WOW: Feminists at @SLU_Official were caught on camera destroying a conservative group’s pro-life memorial.
“…you have no right to have an opinion!” #tolerance pic.twitter.com/pZbjMqZgaP
— YAF (@yaf) November 8, 2021
In the Monday video of the display being vandalized, one woman said to Baker, “So you just love disrespecting women.”
“Yeah, a man who has absolutely no right telling women what to do with their bodies or trying to shame them or trying to make them feel guilty about their decisions that they have absolutely all the right to do,” the other woman said.
On Wednesday, Baker said vandals were aggressive in confronting him.
“People hate you. You’re a disgusting misogynist and you know karma is going to f***ing get you. You’ll see that when you die, and hopefully you f***ing go to hell,” one student said, according to Fox News.
“You can see my pictures, you can see how pretty I am, how good of a life I have. And what do you have? You’re a f***ing loser, and you think you can tell other people what to do with their f***ing bodies.”
“You just really enjoy your life, ’cause I’ll enjoy mine. And I’ll f***ing keep killing babies,” she said, according to Fox.
Lucy Gonzales, the Students For Life Regional Coordinator for Missouri and Arkansas, said this type of harassment is common at Saint Louis University.
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“Something happened every year I was in school here with this display,” she said, according to KMIZ. “This group is used to the harassment.”
“I think Catholic universities and Christian universities … we should really be holding them to those pro-life values that they tout in their mission statements,” she said.
The college claimed it would investigate.
“On Monday afternoon, Saint Louis University’s Office of Student Responsibility and Community Standards was made aware of possible violations of the University’s Community Standards involving a student organization’s approved campus display,” the college’s statement read.
“The Office is conducting an investigation of the report. The University takes seriously any alleged violation of our Community Standards, and has policies and processes in place to address concerns when they are reported.”