Why I do this job

By Melissa Pena

Text imageWorking at American Life League, I frequently encounter one of two reactions when I talk to someone else about where I work. Those opposed tend to offer a look of disgust, while those supportive often offer a sympathetic look and a remark such as “God bless you; I would not be able to work on such depressing topics.”

At first, I took these sympathetic remarks in stride, but lately I have pushed back against them since I love my job! I wake up every morning knowing I can make a difference by educating and saving lives. Don’t get me wrong; these topics can be hard to work with. And yes, there are days I go home a little defeated when a bill does not pass that can save women and children. And every time I hear women talk about their horrifying abortion stories, my heart breaks. 

But these stories are some of the many reasons why I am here and doing what I can to support the work of American Life League. If we do not wake up and do our part to make a difference, then who will help those who can’t stand up for themselves?

There are some who seek to make the world even less welcoming for children, yet who are shielded by the government. These bullies work to control government money and put women into harm’s way on a daily basis. 

Take, for example, the recent bill that was on the floor of the Senate intended to provide funds to help human trafficking victims. Despite the bipartisan nature of the legislation, it took the Senate weeks to pass the measure after it hit a snag over wording that some Senators said would expand a decades-old prohibition restricting taxpayer money from funding some abortions to funds not provided by health programs.   

Now this is a bill that had bipartisan support since the beginning. What do you think happened? It is said that Planned Parenthood looked into the bill and its lobbyists went to work. The compromise that was eventually adopted shifts how money for victims' services is funneled in order to keep the abortion funding prohibition—known as the Hyde Amendment—as narrow as possible. 

Planned Parenthood was not thinking about the thousands of women who are suffering and trapped in the trafficking world when it worked to delay passage of the bill to ensure its own funding. This is just another example of how Planned Parenthood works hard every day to make sure that it is getting every penny it can from you. Make no mistake—this taxpayer money is being collected to murder innocent children. 

We cannot stand for this. We must work to get women out of these, and other, horrifying situations. We must give voices to the babies who have no way to be heard. And we must support and encourage respect for every human being at all stages. This is why I support the work and education that American Life League provides. It is essential to ensure that those who cannot stand up for themselves can have a chance—from creation to death. 

Melissa Pena joined American Life League in December 2014 as development coordinator, providing day-to-day donor support services. Pena is a 3rd year criminology and sociology major at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.