Once a month or so, the Secular Pro-Life blog features a short interview with a pro-life atheist. (See the full series of interviews here.) Although Secular Pro-Life is not exclusively for atheists, historically atheists have played a key role in the organization. As atheists become more prominent in the pro-life movement generally, we’re excited for the opportunity to share their stories. This month, we welcome atheist Michelle Buenrostro.
How did you arrive at the anti-abortion position?
I grew up pro-choice, but then I was pregnant in high school and my parents wanted me to terminate. I felt the need to protect my child and refused. As I continued my pregnancy, it was undeniable that I was growing an individual human. I felt her hiccups, kicks, and heard her heartbeat. Nothing that I went through as a young mother has been worth my daughter’s life.
I realized that abortion is like a bandage on a bleeding, open wound. We have all these social problems that require a lot of charity and activism to fix. Packaging abortion as a solution is neglectful to families trying to get by.
How did you arrive at the atheist position?
Middle school history class. I was brought up Catholic but learned about all these other religions. There was no way that I could confidently say, “mine is the right one,” so I was agnostic for some years. But over time I just stopped praying and talking to a higher being. I eventually became comfortable with the idea that nobody is watching after me, and I will go nowhere at death. True peace, in my opinion.
How do you contribute to the cause of saving lives in the womb?
My charity has been centered around young mothers. I donate supplies to pregnancy resource centers and strongly support policies that help student parents. You have no idea how happy the lactation room at my schools makes me! I’m involved in a support group that mentors young mothers as they transition into adulthood, with assistance including job prep, clothes, cooking skills, relationship knowledge, parenting classes, and self-esteem workshops.
What words of wisdom do you have to share?
Imagine a world in which women do not have to sacrifice their children for survival. That world is worth fighting for.