MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — A traveling display sparked controversy at West Virginia University on Wednesday and Thursday, with its comparisons of abortion and genocide.
The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform set up what it calls the “Genocide Awareness Project” in front of the WVU Mountainlair. The display showed pictures of aborted fetuses next to pictures of Holocaust victims.
“With abortion, the ‘entire human group’ is unwanted, preborn children,” one sign read. “Aborting mothers are not like Nazis. Many are more like victims. But abortion doctors act like death camp doctors.”
Counter-protestors gathered only feet away from the signs, holding up large banners that blocked some signs from the view of passing cars. Both parties were in the “free speech zone” outside the Mountainlair, a WVU-designated area for non-violent protest and demonstration.
A few of the Genocide Awareness Project signs can be viewed below. Some display graphic content of aborted fetuses, so viewer discretion is advised.
7News partner, 12 News spoke to people on both sides of the argument to hear their thoughts on the issue.
It’s horrifying. They have specifically a sign there comparing abortion to the Nazis and the Holocaust. And to just hear something that is a medical procedure that is lifesaving in most situations be compared to something so horrible, where eleven million people were murdered for no reason, I just… it’s baffling.Kayla Castor, WVU student and counter-protester
There are one million abortions that take place in the United States, there are 56 million and counting throughout the world. That’s 56 million plus ours, 57 million plus people that are not on the earth today. We find that to be a genocide, so we think that that’s wrong.Jacinta Robin, Intern program director for The Center of Bio-Ethical Reform
Below are signs held up by counter-protesters.
According to a release from The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, the display will wrap up on Thursday.
The West Virginia Legislature passed a new abortion law last year that was signed into law by Gov. Jim Justice in September. The bill bans abortions in most cases, but it allows exemptions for rape and incest when they are reported to law enforcement, and the procedure is performed before eight weeks of pregnancy for adults and 14 weeks for minors.