Anti-abortion flags displayed on bluff

Published 6:00 am Monday, January 15, 2007

The 4,000 pink and blue flags now whipping in the wind on the bluff are designed to be a quiet reminder of lives that don’t exist.

Members of Pro-Life Natchez-Adams County, the Knights of Columbus, a local Boy Scout troop, Pilgrim Baptist Church and the Ladies Auxiliary worked for several hours Sunday afternoon to create the anti-abortion display.

“We thought a visual display would help impress the enormity of the destruction of lives,” said Virginia O’Beirne, organizer of the local pro-life group.

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The pink flags picture a baby’s face and the words “Abortion kills babies.” The blue flags say, “Jesus forgives.”

Pro-Life Natchez-Adams County was formed about a year ago, O’Beirne said, and the bluff flags are the group’s first public display.

O’Beirne found the display of plastic flags in a catalog and decided they would be appropriate for Natchez. She got approval from the board of aldermen to place the display on the bluff. Then she recruited workers.

“It is heartening to see the people who will turn out,” she said.

Volunteers got more than they bargained for on rocky soil that resisted the wire flags. The group also worked through light rain showers to get the work done.

Those present said they were dedicated to the cause, but a little unsure of what the local reaction would be.

“I think this is going to bring awareness,” Joann Brumfield said. “This is going to bring (abortion) to the conversation table again.”

Ruth Powers said the group chose a non-graphic, non-violent way to protest abortions.

“We don’t want to get in your face with the graphic photos,” she said. “But this is a very visual way of portraying the issue.”

O’Beirne said the group wanted to display the flags on the bluff because it is such a public place.

The display will be up for two weeks and will end with a candlelight vigil at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 22.

The vigil will include prayers, hymns and a few words from local pastors. The event is scheduled to last 30 minutes.

O’Beirne said the entire community is invited to attend.

Pro-Life Natchez-Adams County is non-denominational.