Annual Outstanding Prolife Youth Award
The Right to Life of Michigan Educational Fund annually awards a $500 scholarship in March to one outstanding prolife high school senior in Michigan. Selection criteria include an essay and past participation in prolife activities. Award candidates are nominated by their local RLM affiliates. For more information about the youth award, please contact your affiliate.
2013 Youth Award Winner - James Knarian, Huron County Right to Life
James has participated with many events throughout his young life. He has attended the March for Life in Washington D.C., the annual Roe v. Wade memorial services in Huron County, LifeChain and local prolife youth rallies. He has assisted Huron County Right to Life with numerous projects, including their fair booths and dinners. He has also distributing literature for prolife candidates. He plans on attending Central Michigan University. Congratulations James for your dedication to prolife work!
What can this next generation do to promote a positive prolife message?
The government teacher at my school refuses to talk about abortion. He claims, comparing it to gun control and the Afghanistan War, that “we need to move on.” I disagree. The reason the battle against abortion must rage on is because too many people see abortion in this light. Abortion is infrequently seen for what it really is, murder. Instead, for some, it has merely become a word, overused and glossed over. We can no longer fight the word “abortion.” A fresh battle must be started against the action of killing innocent people.
Fortunately, this battle has strong roots. The prolife movement has continued decades after Roe v. Wade just as the anti-slavery movement withstood the Dred Scott case. While the Supreme Court supported an evil like slavery, the abolitionist movement persevered because justice and morality were on its side. So too have prolifers persevered in the 40 years since Roe v. Wade. Generations have witnessed the atrocity of such murder and have acted against it. My generation, however, is in a difficult situation. Although there has been notable progress, the movement is in danger of becoming stale. It can, however, be re-ignited and grow—when today’s youth recognize and react to the necessary shift in approach.
So, rekindling the fire that once drove all those prolifers is necessary, but how can it be attained by my generation? As youth, we can start by involving ourselves in well-established, valuable prolife activities: joining Students for Life, attending the March for Life, the Life Chain, and local Roe v. Wade memorials. Just the presence of excited youth at such events can make an enormous impact on the movement. That is the easy part. The most difficult challenge for youth is the most necessary. We must accept that the murder of innocent babies is extremely controversial. We must, for the sake of the unborn, accept that openly defying such murder may hurt our social status. We must not shy away from opportunities to discuss this murder with peers. Utilizing the growing social networking world is a powerful tool that must be part of our arsenal. Whether posting a prolife video on Facebook or tweeting a prolife message, the more integrated the prolife movement becomes in youths’ daily lives, the more response will materialize. With the help of my generation, we can “move on” – right to the Supreme Court.
Runner-up - Katie DeVries, Grand Rapids Right to Life
Katie has been an active member of Grand Rapids Students for Life and participated with their drama team. She has assisted Grand Rapids Right to Life with their dinner and their annual Bike n' Hike for Life, and helped make phone calls for the 2012 election. For three years she took part in the Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity. She plans on attending Rochester College.
From Katie's essay: "What our generation needs for promoting our life-giving message is simple: dedication and perseverance. As students and worker, we are constantly surrounded by people. Our opportunities are endless in just our everyday lives. We don’t need more rallies, though they are a wonderful way to fellowship and grow with one another. What we need is the courage to vocalize our knowledge and the strength to never back down from those who oppose us, for they are the ones who it is of the utmost important to reach with our persuasive words."
Honorable Mention – Anna Mikowski, Grand Traverse Area Right to Life
Anna has been a member of her Students for Life group for three years, and participated in the Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity. She attended the March for Life in Washington, D.C. and helped organize a local march for her school. She has assisted Grand Traverse Area Right to Life with their dinner. She plans on attending Northwestern Michigan College.
From Anna's essay: "Our children and their children will have to be a beacon of light for all the babies that have lost their lives. They can promote and send a positive message to people by allowing their actions to speak for themselves. "
Honorable Mention – Jennifer Evans, Barry County Right to Life
Jennifer is an active member of Grand Rapids Students for Life and a state finalist for the 2013 Right to Life of Michigan Educational Fund High School Oratory Contest. She recently did a prolife art project despite criticism from her teacher about it's subject. She has assisted Grand Rapids Right to Life as a church coordinator for her church, and with their baby bottle drive for local pregnancy services. She has assisted Barry County Right to Life with their county fair booth. She plans on attending Grace Bible College.
From Jennifer's essay: "Being prolife is more than just a label. It is standing up for what we believe in and making a difference; it is taking action."
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