Here’s How The Compassionate Group Behind This Facebook Page Saved An Unborn Child’s Life

Photo credit: FlyButtafly (Creative Commons)

Western Journalism covered the impact technology continues to have within the pro-life community in a recent report, citing extensively the work being done by one organization in particular: Online for Life.

Brian Fisher, the group’s co-founder and president, touted the wide reach available through social media sites like Facebook as a major factor in disseminating a message of love and compassion toward those facing a crisis pregnancy. That social media presence, he recently revealed in a statement he shared with Western Journalism, had a direct impact on one woman’s life – and that of her unborn child.

The woman, identified only as Bali, was living in West Africa and saw no alternative to aborting her child until she visited the Online for Life Facebook page.

“Unfortunately, her boyfriend of four years denied any responsibility for their child and pressured her to abort,” Fisher’s statement about the incident explained. “With no family or friends willing to support her, ‘Bali’ felt completely alone and believed abortion was her only solution.”

Upon reaching the group’s page, however, she soon discovered alternatives presented in a non-judgmental way, providing her with a different potential future for her and her child.

“I began to think that maybe I could have the baby on my own,” she said.

Fisher explained Bali spent “hours sitting in front of her computer” studying the informational graphics available on the page and reading the accounts of “abortion-determined women who ultimately chose life for their children” before she ultimately decided to allow her baby to live.

“She immediately emailed our team and described the impact our Facebook page had made in her decision to choose life for her child,” Fisher’s statement continued. “Inspired by the life-saved stories featured on the Online for Life wall, ‘Bali’ was able to stand up to her friends, family, and boyfriend who were pressuring her to abort.”

The connection between Bali and the pro-life group did not end there, Fisher explained.

“Online for Life has remained in constant communication with ‘Bali,’” he confirmed, “doing what we can to support her in her courageous decision. After making several calls to local charities, we were able to find her housing and employment after she graduates in May.”

Share this article on Facebook if you support Online for Life’s mission.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Facebook Rejects Ad For ‘I Am A Christian’ Movie

Photo credit: shutterstock.com

Facebook rejected an ad by the producers of the film I Am A Christian because the company says it degrades people.

The film is to be about the life of a Sudanese woman, Meriam Ibrahim, who was sentenced to 100 lashes and death by her government for her refusal to renounce her Christian faith. Ibrahim was pregnant at the time, and her story captured international attention. She gave birth to a baby girl in prison.

The Sudanese high court eventually overturned Ibrahim’s sentence; and she, her husband, and two children took refuge in the U.S. embassy in Sudan. The United States government offered asylum; and after some high-level diplomatic negotiations with the assistance of the Italian government, Ibrahim and her family were allowed to emigrate to the U.S. last summer.

When the producers of the independent film I Am A Christian–slated to star Clueless actor Stacey Dash and Hercules actor Kevin Sorbo–tried to promote a crowdsourcing site for the project on Facebook, they received an opaque message back from the company.

As reported in the Christian Examiner:

In a press statement, Brian Harrington, a spokesman for the movie group, claimed Facebook sent a message which said the ad was not approved “because it doesn’t follow Facebook’s Advertising Guidelines for language that is profane, vulgar, threatening or generates high negative feedback.

“Ads can’t use language that insults, harasses or demeans people, or addresses their age, gender, name, race, physical condition or sexual preference,” the message added, according to Harrington.

He said a subsequent exchange with Facebook evinced a response that said the ad did not conform to Facebook’s “language policies.”

“We’ve found that people dislike ads that directly address them or their personal characteristics such as religion.

“Ads should not single out individuals or degrade people. We don’t accept language like ‘Are you fat?’ ‘Wanna join me?’ and the like. Instead, text must present realistic and accurate information in a neutral or positive way and should not have any direct attribution to people.”

The ad the producers wanted to put on Facebook asks:

“Are you a Christian? We challenge you to change your profile picture to this ‘I Am A Christian’ photo for one week! Change your picture now, and challenge your friends to do the same. Stand up and declare Yes, I Am A Christian!!!”

The photo with the ad also included a website link, www.YesIAmAChristian.com, and a message encouraging viewers to “Join the movement.”

i-am-a-christian

Apparently, asking Facebook users if they are Christian was the offensive message.

Meriam Ibrahim does not support the making of the film I Am A Christian because it is being made without her consent.

h/t: Daily Caller

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Exclusive: How Technology Revolutionized The Abortion Debate – And Made Americans More Pro-Life

Photo Credit: GPL. (Creative Commons)

In the age of the Internet, virtually any business or organization that shuns technological advances does so at its own peril. In some cases, however, a strong online presence serves an even higher purpose than protecting market share or increasing a company’s bottom line.

For those whose mission it is to protect the lives of the unborn, the Internet has provided a level playing field for the free exchange of ideas. This trend has correlated with surveys indicating that Americans in general are growing less supportive of abortion on demand.

Western Journalism recently spoke to officials involved in two leading pro-life groups who explained the benefits of sharing their message online. Online for Life President Brian Fisher has made it his mission to leverage the power of the Internet while Pro-Life Action League assistance communications director Matthew Yonke explained his organization utilizes technology to expand its reach.

“Prior to the expansion of digital communications,” Yonke said, “the Pro-Life Action League had to communicate through print and phone exclusively, and often by our National Director, Joe Scheidler, traveling across the country to meet with individual right-to-life groups to inspire more people to activism.”

He said that, while those techniques are still being employed across the nation, the Internet has allowed the organization to use its human resources more effectively while recruiting and equipping “hundreds of thousands more people to fight abortion through direct, grassroots activism and prayer presence at abortion clinics.”

In addition to the group’s website, Yonke stressed the importance of social media sites, which he said plays a significant role “both in sharing the kind of activism we’re doing with the world and in allowing people to reach out to us for help getting involved.”

Fisher echoed Yonke’s sentiment regarding the potential for social impact the Internet provides those in the pro-life movement, recalling the motivation behind creating Online for Life.

“There are over two million Internet searches a month in the U.S. for abortion-related terms,” he explained, “so we just determined many hurting women were using the Internet to find abortion options or just information.”

He too touted social media, calling sites like Facebook “probably our strongest way to connect with like-minded communities.”

With hundreds of thousands of Facebook users interacting with his group, he said his is “the most active pro-life social community in the world.”

By taking feedback seriously and encouraging that interaction, he said the group has been able to extend its influence and partner with many other groups.

Another unique aspect of a strong online presence, Fisher noted, is the promise of “virtually instant feedback.”

He described the organization’s leadership as “data junkies,” individuals from the private sector interested in quick results and open to trying new approaches based on the data they receive.

“That knowledge helps us to improve our outreach over time,” he said.

Pro-Life Action League offers links to a litany of other groups with an online presence, signaling a level of partnership unimaginable prior to the Internet.

“It certainly is easier to work together with other organizations these days,” Yonke acknowledged. “For example, the Pro-Life Action League collaborated with dozens of other pro-life and pro-religious freedom groups on our ‘Stand Up for Religious Freedom’ rallies against the [Department of Health and Human Services contraceptive mandate] in 2012. Almost all of the work that went into rallying hundreds of thousands of people to nationwide rallies in hundreds of cities was organized from our offices here in Chicago.”

If not for the Internet, he insisted, “that kind of collaboration would have been impossible.”

While technology’s inherent democracy does not specifically favor the pro-life position, Yonke explained that it does make it easier to combat the misleading rhetoric emanating from the pro-abortion camp.

“Certainly the expanded reach technology has given us has made it harder for pro-abortion forces to push their obfuscations like claiming a baby in the womb being ‘just a blob of tissue,’” he said. “Ultrasound photos and in-utero photography can now be easily shared, as well as photos of abortion’s victims, which are easily available on pro-life websites including the Pro-Life Action League’s site.”

Both men recognized a shift toward the pro-life position among Americans, a trend documented in the results of several recent surveys. Furthermore, they predict the nation will continue to grow wearier of the permissive attitude toward killing the unborn.

“Young people becoming adults these days have grown up under the threat of legal abortion,” Yonke said. “They know that many of their peers, classmates, and siblings have not made it out of their mother’s womb alive, and I think that affects the way they think about the issue.”

Fisher agreed, forecasting his belief that “we will see abortion become unthinkable and unavailable in our lifetimes.”

He concluded that there exists “a convergence of science, medicine, cultural opinion, and logic, and that convergence will lead to the end of this terrible blight on America’s history.”

In the meantime, however, Yonke and Fisher stress the importance of pro-life Americans to remain active in their communities and beyond, using technology to amplify their voices.

“You can help spread the pro-life message online in lots of ways,” Yonke said. “Post pro-life news stories on your Facebook, Twitter, blog or other social media sites – particularly helpful stories that expose the depravity of the abortion business or the help available for women in difficult pregnancies.”

Additionally, he noted that Pro-Life Action League – as well as most other related organizations – offers an email list with the latest news affecting the nation’s abortion policy.

“Get email alerts from your local pro-life/pro-family lobbying organization so you are alerted when you can make an important phone call to your legislator that can make a huge impact on the laws of our land.”

He encouraged advocates, however, to share their convictions in a loving way without making accusations or moral judgments.

“Pro-abortion people are not our enemy,” he concluded. “They’re children of God who are wrong about this issue but nevertheless deserve to be treated with the kind of love Jesus showed to all people in His earthly ministry.”

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

A Man Made A Shocking Discovery About ISIS In America, But What Happened Next Is Unbelievable

ISIS texas

So, you’ve dropped into a Houston, TX deli for a little lunch; and you spot a guy in front of you wearing full Islamic attire with what appears to be the ISIS emblem on the front and back. You subtly take a few pictures. Then you post them on facebook, only to have them removed for supposedly depicting “graphic violence.”

Your facebook page, “Tactical Advantage,” is then flagged because the cover photo of you and your family violates the social media site’s “nudity” policy…even though no one in the picture is anywhere close to naked.

That’s reportedly what happened to an observant facebook user named “Mike,” who has since republished the photos of the apparent ISIS follower/supporter he spotted in Houston. You can see the main one here:

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According to madworldnews.com, Mike has also turned over his pictures to the FBI.

While President Obama denies ISIS is any threat to America, ISIS has repeatedly encouraged followers to cross over the Southern border to infiltrate U.S. cities.

Reports of ISIS in Ciudad Juarez on the Mexico-U.S. border have recently surfaced, which puts the insurgents only 8 miles from El Paso, Texas. This revelation proves even more threatening with photos of supporters in Ferguson, Chicago, and now Houston.

Newsmax.com recently posted a piece about the presence of ISIS supporters and recruiters in America, some of whom have reportedly entered the country by sneaking across the porous southern border.

Islamic State (ISIS) cells are already in the United States, and some of them have entered by crossing the Mexican border says former CIA agent Bob Baer.

Baer told CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper” on Tuesday that people working in intelligence-gathering have told him they don’t know what ISIS members’ plans are, but “it’s a definite concern.

“People who do this for a living are very alarmed,” Baer said.

Other ISIS members are American citizens who have been to Syria and have returned, he said. While intelligence agencies are aware of some of the people they suspect of being ISIS members and are working to gather evidence to apprehend them, they fear there are more that they don’t know about.

 

Image Credits: facebook/tactical advantage

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Police Cite and Fine Woman For Misinterpreted Facebook Post

Most social media users understand that whatever they post publicly online is available to anyone with a desire to view it. What some might not consider, though, is that those potential viewers include law enforcement personnel who can use your words against you – even if they are taken out of context.

A Will County, Ill. resident found this out recently after adding to a Facebook conversation regarding a local dog park. Commenters complained pets were getting sick after visiting Whalon Lake Dog Park; and in response, the resident expressed her relief that she had not exposed her dog to the threat.

In hindsight, she admits her wording was a bit clumsy; however, the intention of her comment should be fairly clear.

“I was feeling bad that I haven’t bought a pass and been bringing Ginger there but I’m pretty glad I haven’t,” she wrote.

What she meant was that she had not used the park at all. The Will County forest preserve police department, however, took her message to mean that she had taken her dog to the park without a license and quickly responded by mailing her a citation.

It is unclear why they thought she would be “pretty glad” that she had exposed her pet to a potential illness – whether with or without a park license. Nevertheless, she found the citation in her mailbox, telling a local reporter that she was “shocked and confused” to receive it.

Officers, however, are defending their method of acting based on nebulous social media entries alone.

“We did issue a citation to a woman based on her Facebook post,” said department spokesperson Cindy Cain. “The only reason we were monitoring the group is because of the complaints of kennel cough. When we saw her post about visiting the dog park without buying a permit, it was our responsibility to respond.”

Now the woman will be forced to go to court if she hopes to contest the outrageous citation, Cain explained.

County forest preserve officials, including its president and at least one commissioner, however, reportedly disagree with the tactic and do not believe officers should rely on Facebook posts as the sole basis of issuing citations.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom