HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Courageous: Students Abolishing Abortion in This Lifetime
Author: Kristan Hawkins
Publisher: Students for Life of America, 2012
Related websites: http://courageousthebook.com/ (book), http://studentsforlife.org/ (publisher)
Language level: 2
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Reading level: Older teens and adults
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Hawkins, Kristan. Courageous: Students Abolishing Abortion in This Lifetime (published in 2012 by Students for Life of America, 9255 Center Street, Suite 300, Manassas, VA 20110). This is another openly pro-life, anti-abortion book that was sent to me when I donated to a pro-life organization. After a forward by Jason Jones, Co-Executive Producer of the pro-life, pro-adoption movie Bella, who as a seventeen-year-old boy suffered the loss of his child when his pregnant girlfriend was forced to get an abortion by her parents (so much for the claim that pregnancy and abortion affect only women, so men should have no say on the subject), it tells the stories of twelve young people who have become leaders in the pro-life movement. They include a rape victim, unmarried pregnant college girls, victims of abusive relationships, a post-abortive mother, and an adoptive birth mother—all the kinds of so-called “exceptions” which the pro-abortion crowd continually cites to bolster their demands to keep abortion “safe and legal”—among others. The book ends with a chapter “Your Call to Be Courageous” by author, or more precisely editor since all the stories in the book are told in the first person by each individual, Kristan Hawkins, and some information about Students for Life of America (SFLA).
Of course, folks who are dedicated to endorsing and supporting abortion don’t like the book. One critical reviewer wrote, “Their intent is to ban legal abortions. Abortion has always, and will always occur. They don’t want it? Fine. Don’t have one. But don’t presume to tell others how to live their lives.” I can just hear an ancestor of this person in 1856 reviewing Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stow. “Their intent is to ban legal slavery. Slavery has always, and will always occur. They don’t want it? Fine. Don’t have one. But don’t presume to tell others how to live their lives.” Another indicated that he or she was interested in reading real stories from young people about their viewpoints on abortion, but upon reading a few pages found that obviously this is anti-abortion literature, implying perhaps that the book is somewhat deceptive. However, the subtitle explains precisely what it is about: “Students Abolishing Abortion in This Lifetime.” Nothing deceptive about that! Indeed, the mission of SFLA is to end abortion by educating students about the issues of abortion, euthanasia, and infanticide; identifying pro-life student leaders; equipping student pro-lifers with the training, skills and resources to be effective and successful; promoting student activity to other local, college and national organizations.
Kristan was hired in 2006 to launch Students for Life of America’s full-time operation. Since then, Kristan has helped more than triple the number of campus pro-life groups in the United States, to more than 700 in 49 states today. In addition, she helped grow the SFLA National Conference from 450 in 2007 to 2,000 in 2012, making the event the largest pro-life conference in the nation. As President, Kristan directs the mission and strategy of Students for Life. Kristan’s pro-life mission began in high school when she was asked to volunteer at a Pregnancy Resource Center. After graduating as Valedictorian, Kristan went to Bethany Collage (WV) and started the first pro-life group on her campus. In 2005, she graduated Summa Cum Laude. Before coming to SFLA, Kristan worked for the 2004 Bush/Cheney re-election campaign, for the Republican National Committee, and as a political appointee for the George W. Bush administration at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. These stories, which are real and messy, will inspire and encourage others to join with the movement to abolish abortion in our lifetime.