This week's North Dakota State Fair offers many down-home pleasures: Extreme Canines, Pig Racing, Fur Traders Rendezvous, Milk-A-Cow contests, Toby Keith and, now, free squeezy little fetus dolls handed out to kids in goodie bags, unbeknownst to their parents, by anti-abortion zealots. The "Precious One" fetal models, accompanied by "informational" pamphlets, are made by Heritage House, a "pro-life supply store" whose website praises "its beautiful detail, softness and weight (that) can really move hearts and change minds," and whose rapturous customer reviews confirm it as "the most versatile, portable, durable, inexpensive item in my pro-life toolbox" fostering "instant attachment to the unborn!" Responding to criticism, a so-called right-to-life group in the state - where a federal judge just blocked a new extreme six-week abortion ban - argue the dolls have "nothing to do with abortion." But even a Tea Party blogger who says he is "as pro-life (sic) as they come" threw his away and "noticed a lot of the weird little creepies littering the garbage bins." Handing out "squishy alien babies" at a fair, he suggests, re-enforces "the caricature of the pro-life activist" as "a bunch of weirdos." You think?
"I think of the 751PO as the most versatile, portable, durable, inexpensive item in my pro-life toolbox. Buy it in every ethnicity, and try to keep one of each ethnicity with you at all times. Buy extra of the skin tones that you see most often. It's cheap enough to be the item I give away to either change somebody's mind about preborn personhood, or to move them from being a benchwarmer to being an active pro-lifer in some way. I give the 751PO to clergy, pro-life medical professionals, and most recently, an artist while she was molding small clay objects. The 751PO is priced right to keep a few here and a few there...whatever bags or vehicles go with you when you leave the house. Some of my best counseling has happened on a subway. Unlike brochures and printed materials, the 751PO can't get waterlogged, and it's very durable. In some situations, I'll make a game of it and ask the person to guess how old the child is. Also, learn to say, '12 weeks' in whatever languages are spoken around you."