An anti-abortion group complained Tuesday that three
Wisconsin college newspapers had rejected its advertisements.
Pro-Life Wisconsin said its ads were submitted to and
rejected by the Marquette University Tribune, the UW-Stout Stoutonia and the
UW-La Crosse Racquet.
?Be good to yourself over spring break,? the ad reads. ?Make
smart choices the night before ? that way you won?t have any emergencies to
deal with the morning after!?
It also says emergency contraception is a powerful, high
dose of steroids that ?tricks a woman?s body into thinking it is pregnant? and
can cause ?chemical abortions and deadly blood clots.?
According to professor William Thorn, chairman of the board
for Marquette University Student Media, the advertisements were ?a topic of
considerable discussion,? reaching up the chain of command to the board. Thorn
said some topics, including abortion, are automatically red-flagged in
advertising, requiring review.
?I think if it had come in a day earlier, under deadline, we
may have been able to resolve this,? Thorn said.
He added the students had objected to the term ?chemical
abortion,? though he had been concerned with the ?unsubstantiated? medical
claim about blood clots.
?The advertising space closed before I could really get the
kind of information and resolution I would have needed,? Thorn said.
According to UW-La Crosse Racquet Editor in Chief Andrea
Wilson, that paper is not finished considering the ad either.
?In the past we have had issues on campus with
advertisements of this nature, so we are taking our time in discussions about
whether we should run it, but we have never said we wouldn?t run this ad,?
Members of the UW-Stout Stoutonia staff were not available
for comment as of press time.
Pro-Life Wisconsin said the ads were rejected because of the
?College newspapers have always fashioned themselves as
supporting free speech more than any other newspaper, but it seems like it?s
only free speech for the message they want to put out,? said Virginia Zignego,
communications director for the group.
The Badger Herald, the UW-Superior Stinger and papers from
UW-Platteville and UW-Milwaukee were among publications to accept the ads.
Zignego also complained that colleges have encouraged use of
emergency contraception in the past.
?In 2005, UHS ran an ad urging students to prepare for
spring break by stocking up on emergency contraception,? Zignego said.
Targeted representatives demand abortion rights groups
After calling some advertisements from Planned Parenthood
and NARAL Pro-Choice ?false? Friday, state Rep. Jim Ott, R-Mequon, demanded
Tuesday that the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel stop running the ads.
Rep. Mark Honadel, R-South Milwaukee, joined Ott Monday in
denouncing the ads and demanding they be retracted.
In the radio versions of this set of ads, announcers said
Ott or one of three other representatives supports Wisconsin?s criminal
abortion ban, under which rape victims who have an abortion could be threatened
A similar online version has run on the Journal Sentinel?s
Ott called the advertisements ?boldfaced lies? and said the
Journal Sentinel did not have the ?courtesy or the journalistic integrity to
check with somebody when a statement is made about them that is outrageous on
Kelda Helen Roys, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice,
said the legislators had their chance to stand against punishments for rape
victims who get abortions during a vote on an amendment two weeks ago. Ott has
said he voted against it because it could have compromised the bill in
question, a ban on partial-birth abortions.
?Their votes speak for themselves,? Roys said. ?We
absolutely stand by our ads.?
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel did not return requests for
comment as of press time.