A pro-life woman was dismayed to wake up one day earlier this month and find her picture slapped on an article whose author defends having three abortions.
In early August, the pro-abortion campaign Shout Your Abortion published an article titled, “I am 23 and I have had 3 abortions. YES I HAVE!” The article featured a picture of a sunny, smiling girl standing outside in exercise clothes.
The girl in the picture, however, is Molly Schaap, who has never had an abortion and has even donated to pro-life causes, including Oregon Right to Life and StandUpGirl.com.
Shout Your Abortion, which promotes abortion as “normal,” calls its campaign “a decentralized network of individuals talking about abortion on our own terms and creating space for others to do the same.”
Schaap, who lives in Oregon, contacted several pro-life organizations to set the record straight.
So you heard the "I am 23 and I have had 3 abortions. YES I HAVE!" story? https://t.co/dszzGQoIEq
the photo in that? stolen.
— Nick Monroe (@nickmon1112) September 3, 2018
The author is a different girl from the one in the picture. The girl in the picture is my sister who is 24 and has never had an abortion. Just wanting to get the facts straight since her photograph has been used and she is getting hateful comments.
— Sarah Schaap (@schaap_sarah) August 31, 2018
“My name is Molly. I am 24 and want to make it clear that I have never had an abortion. I was horrified to wake up yesterday and learn that a photo of me was stolen and used without my permission or knowledge on a post for ‘Shout Your Abortion,’ a website that encourages women to share the stories of their abortions,” Schaap said in a statement to several pro-life organizations as well as National Review.
She added that she has received “judgmental and unkind” comments since the article was published.
“From reading many of the comments directed at the girl in the photo, I realize that a message of compassion is often not the typical response to these women,” she remarked. “Through this experience, I hope that those who have read about my situation will extend compassion toward them. Compassion does not mean agreeing with actions but speaks much more powerfully than judgmental and unkind words.”
She added some kind words for the author of the article.
“If Heather really exists, I want her to know that she has value and is loved despite the unfortunate life choices she has made. The Bible clearly teaches that God is a forgiving God. As a Christian, I strive to embody the love of Christ. Passing judgment helps no one.”
Schaap had posted the picture on her private Instagram account as well as a Christian dating website, she told National Review.
“While I was horrified to learn that my photo was stolen and used in a way that is the exact opposite of what I believe, I hope that in some way this can be used for good,” she said. “I hope that this helps girls who are experiencing the aftermath of abortion or those who might be considering abortion to realize that there is a God who loves and cares for them and there are other options available to chose life. There is a supportive community of individuals that value them and their lives.”
The post has since been removed without explanation from Shout Your Abortion’s website after it went viral across social media.
Shout Your Abortion and its founder, Amelia Bonow, did not respond to National Review’s request for comment.