Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa, founder of the pro-life group New Wave Feminists, read about overcrowded conditions for families illegally crossing the U.S. border and decided to put together a humanitarian drive to meet their human needs. Named Bottles2theBorder, her campaign has united more than 50 diverse pro-life groups with the idea of showing that pro-life people sincerely care about people from conception through the rest of their lives. So far, the campaign has raised more than $100,000 in donations and supplies.
A common criticism levied by pro-choice people is that pro-life people only care about babies in the womb. The also like to insist that pro-life people only want to control women, and don’t actually care about preserving life. Mixed in is a heavy amount of rhetoric (and accusations) about how hypocritical pro-life people are. Also, troublingly, when pro-life people step up and do things to support people like this campaign, the mainstream media is overwhelmingly silent about it.
This is why something like Bottles2theBorder is important. It presents the real truth about pro-life people. Pro-life people do care about unborn babies, that’s true, but they also care deeply about those babies—and their families—after birth, too.
Herndon-De La Rosa describes what takes place when families arrive at the respite center she’s worked with for a previous humanitarian drive: “When the detainees arrive at the Humanitarian Respite Center in McAllen, Texas, Sister Norma Pimentel gathers a group of smiling volunteers to line the sidewalk entering her facility. As each detainee exits the bus that ICE brings them on, the volunteers warmly welcome each one…Many have spent months in detainment and experienced real trauma, so welcoming them into our country with a smile and a ‘hola’ goes a long way.”
Herndon-De La Rosa’s motivations for this drive are deeply rooted in her beliefs about the positive results that can come from people working together. She also sees important parallels between the care that can be shown to these families and the care that is shown to the unborn: “Many of these families will end up staying in the United States and if they feel unwanted, that can really impact how well they assimilate into our country and communities.”
“We see this same argument a lot with abortion, obviously,” she continued. “We’re told ‘unwanted’ children will be abused and neglected. And the pro-life movement has never agreed that that’s a valid reason to get rid of them. To the contrary. We’ve said that’s all the more reason to surround them with love and support. Wanted or unwanted, these are human beings who are vulnerable right now, and the pro-life movement has some expertise in this area, so I think it makes complete sense for us to also be fighting for those at the border.”
Herndon-De La Rosa says the best solution for the current conditions at the border is for individual people and groups to come together and step in to help: “Everyone keeps waiting for the government to fix this mess, but it’s the government that created it in the first place, many administrations ago. So maybe it’s time for regular people to rise up and do what we can, where we can, by offering real, tangible support to those in need. At this point, our options are either sit around complaining about the horror we see unfolding at the border, or get up and do something about it ourselves. No matter how big or small that impact might be, it will still go a whole heck of a lot further than ranting on the internet.”
Abby Johnson, founder of the pro-life organization And Then There Were None, worked with Herndon-De La Rosa on this drive. She thinks the timing of this campaign and the outpouring of support indicates the direction of the pro-life movement: “Being pro-life isn’t about being pro-birth but about loving others, especially the most vulnerable who need protection and support.”
Johnson reports that contributors to this campaign donated 110,000 diapers, an 18-wheeler truck, and more than $100,000 in financial donations. Herndon-De La Rosa’s campaign is raising funds until July 13, and you can donate here. Johnson’s group has an Amazon list here for their semi-truck of supplies, where you can directly purchase items.
Johnson hopes people find out about this campaign and that it might help change minds about pro-life people: “It’s my hope that people who are critical of the pro-life movement look to New Wave Feminists and this campaign and see the massive efforts undertaken to protect innocent life and help those who need it most.”
Pro-life people put their love into action. This campaign isn’t the first nor the last example of it.