Pregnant in college

The local campus newspaper carried an article about a student who, with the help of her partner and family, is on track to graduate with her class in 2010 despite taking time off to give birth to her daughter.

Maria Moreno, Deanna’s mother, talks about her daughter’s initiative and determination.

“One thing that I have noticed, now that she has a child, is that she is very independent and has been able to carry the accomplishment of raising (Sofia) and being able to balance school,” Maria Moreno said.

Between having a baby, going to school and planning to go back to work, Maria Moreno added, Deanna is making it all work, with the support of her family and her boyfriend, Dennis Hernandez.

“I was really concerned at the very beginning, but right now I am so proud of her. She has been able to adapt and take care of her child very well,” Maria Moreno said.

The article itself is uplifting and encouraging. The comments section — not so much. The first comment (using the handle “Pro Choice”!) simply says:

Having a child while in college is statistically highly correlated with college dropout rates. She would have been well advised to abort the fetus.

“Tyrone the Rapist” takes Moreno to task for decreasing the prestige of the University and says, “This is what the University gets for accepting people who have no business being in college.” “Don H” gets in his own racist jab with, “*puke* Story about ghetto love.”

Another commenter, “Cassidy C Browning”, has no problem with Moreno, but questions why the paper featured her story:

Getting pregnant while in college is not a unique situation – nor is choosing to carry the fetus to term and raise the child.

As I replied to Ms. Browning, choosing to carry to term and raise the child while in college may not be a unique decision, but it’s a rare one compared to abortion or dropping out. Looking at the hatred and scorn that supposedly enlightened people are heaping upon this young woman for daring to bear a child, it’s not hard to understand why so many women in Ms. Moreno’s place end up where she was when this story started — on the way to an appointment for an abortion.

Who wants to run for Vice President?

Consistent life ethic advocate seeks same for mutually fulfilling ballot arrangement. Likes: moonlit petition drives, long walks on the campaign trail, and social justice. Dislikes: violence, greed, apathy. Not necessarily looking for a heavy time commitment, but open to more if you’re willing. Contact Joe if this sounds like the right match for you.

Violence against women in Congo

Even after the end of the war, hundreds of thousands of women and children are raped every year in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Panzi Hospital in Bukavu serves the survivors of this epidemic of sexual violence.

The hospital also has a daycare for children conceived as a result of sexual violence.

Susannah Breslin at The Reverse Cowgirl found out more about what we can do to help. I’ll quote here, but I recommend reading the whole post:

If readers wish to contribute funds they can do it through the Bank Account of Panzi General Reference Hospital, to which they can send their donation. Please mark the check or bank transfer with “VVS project” (“Victims de Violence Sexuelle Projet”, in other words, Victims of Sexual Violence project). This is the project that is run within the infrastructure of the Panzi hospital and in which we treat and rehabilitate the raped women. The hospital is owned and run by the organisation called CEPAC.

Account number: 170-0362031-93 (USD account)
Title of receiver: 8ème CEPAC V/C HOPITAL GENERAL DE REFERENCE DE PANZI
BANQUE COMMERCIALE DU CONGO
AGENCE DE BUKAVU/ RD CONGO
Swift code / BCDCCDKI

Say NO to violence against women

Via Nonviolent Choice:

The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women will receive $100,000 from the United Nations Foundation for 100,000 signatures on its petition. They’re currently at 68,4823. Please help them get over 100,000.

(Unfortunately, I’m having trouble connecting to the main web site to find out what the money will be used for, but nonetheless, it seems worth a moment of one’s time.)