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BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (ChurchMilitant.com) - A group of young, media-savvy, pro-life Argentines has announced that it is making a video to document the growing pro-life movement in Latin America.
Filmmaker and pro-life activist Nicolás Canale of Faro Films told Church Militant that the 2018 campaign in Argentina to protect unborn human life inspired him and collaborators to produce an "audiovisual testimony" about the continentwide pro-life Ola Celeste (Blue Wave) movement.
It was on Aug. 8 that year that a populist movement led by Catholics and evangelical Christians defeated legislation in Argentina's Senate that would have made abortion legal in nearly all cases.
The goal of the project, apart from documenting the success of the 2018 campaign, Canale told Church Militant, is to "bring about unity for this huge movement throughout Latin America and the world."
This film is necessary because the Argentine experience managed to develop its own identity for the pro-life movement by focusing on one color and our trademark sky-blue bandanna, as well as the Salvemos las 2 Vidas (Let's save both lives) slogan that is a winning look for the movement. It's no longer about abortion, yes or no, but to save both lives — babies and women. It is an innovative vision that can develop new projects for the movement in other countries.
In February, thousands of pro-abortion activists gathered on the streets of Buenos Aires, apparently enthused by the Peronist government's promises to introduce abortion on demand. However, Argentine pro-lifers were quick to respond on social media. "Abortion is a failure," ran the slogan that spread on social media as pro-lifers deplored what they consider the anti-life, anti-woman abortion initiative. Prolifers in Argentina and elsewhere wear sky-blue handkerchiefs in tribute to the sanctity of life, Canale said.
Pro-lifer Belu Lombardi, for example, declared on Twitter: "Abortion kills an innocent. Abortion harms women. Abortion benefits the men who abandon women. Abortion allows the rapist to go free. Abortion does not salve the wound. Abortion does not relieve poverty. Abortion is not a right. Abortion is a failure."
One young woman posted a photo of herself and her baby on Twitter, writing: "Here I am with my one-year-old son. I became pregnant at 15 and I was told to abort. But I didn't because I wanted to save that life. Now I am the happiest mom in the world! Thanks to the pro-life movement for opening my mind."
Canale said that the producers of the video want to provide a look behind the scenes of the Blue Wave in order to appreciate the personalities and passion of the growing movement. Lupe Batallán, a young influencer on Twitter and Instagram, will figure prominently in the video by interviewing fellow pro-lifers who were active in defeating the abortion initiative in the Argentine Congress. Faro Films was the only video production crew that was granted broad access to the movement, having recorded interviews, rallies and events. It was thus transformed into a distinct protagonist in the movement.
According to Canale, the efforts by the current Peronist-dominated president and Congress to eliminate protections for the unborn in Argentina, even during the COVID-19 pandemic, has made producing the video even more relevant.
Elsewhere in Latin America, pro-abortion initiatives are growing. In Mexico, for example, the socialist president and his cabinet are pushing not only for eliminating most protections for the unborn but also for same-sex "marriage." Funding for the pro-abortion movement in Latin America comes from organizations such as Planned Parenthood and the Guttmacher Institute.
Canale said that the film will feature interviews with Latin American pro-life personalities such as Mexican actor Eduardo Verástegui, who recently met President Donald Trump and presented him with an icon of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the Patroness of the Americas who many have accepted as the true leader of the continental pro-life movement.
Others to be featured include Argentine political analyst and author Agustín Laje and Sara Winter of Brazil, a former pro-abortion feminist who currently coordinates maternal policy for the Brazilian government.
Canale said that various sectors of the pro-life movement have helped with the video, having granted access and interviews. In addition, with the release of the trailer for the video, even more have helped by passing on the word about it.
While granting that the project and fundraising is in its early stages, Canale said that Faro Films has not been offered any assistance by Roman Catholic bishops. However, several Catholic priests and figures from the evangelical Christian community have offered help and financial contributions, he said. Several political figures have expressed interest, he said, and may be featured in the finished product.
In January, Canale and members of his team went to Washington, D.C. to witness the annual March for Life and contact pro-lifers. He related:
Many people in the Hispanic community already knew about us and had seen our videos. They were helpful and willing to contribute to our project. However, the pro-life movement in the U.S. did not otherwise appear to know about the Latin American movement. So we had to explain everything to them from scratch. But we made some friends and left materials about our project and the movement.
Canale told Church Militant that he and other members of the Blue Wave were interviewed by U.S. media, which provided greater visibility for the pro-life movement in Argentina and Latin America.
To commemorate the movement's 2018 victory, the allied Union Provida (Pro-life Union) mounted a virtual rally online last week. While the 2019 rally in Buenos Aires and elsewhere brought thousands of Argentines to the streets, because of the COVID-19 pandemic this year activists stayed home and watched streaming video that that featured pro-life leaders discussing the current threat they face from the Peronist government. These would figure into the Faro Films documentary.
President Alberto Fernández has promised repeatedly to sign pro-abortion legislation. In July, he announced that a bill that would allow abortion in virtually all circumstances would be making its way through both houses of Congress. He is the first Argentine president to forthrightly declare himself in favor of the practice. Elected in December 2019, he enjoys a Peronist majority in Congress, where the abortion bill is projected to sail through.
Pro-abortion feminists and LGBTQ activists were prominent in 2018 and 2019, wearing their trademark green handkerchiefs and participating in raucous and obscene demonstrations that included firebomb attacks on Catholic churches. These groups were crucial to the Peronist victory last year.
Leftist pro-abortion parties elsewhere in Latin America have used these tactics to squelch dissent, even while they have made progress with aligned governments, such as Mexico's current socialist president Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his Morena Party, which has vowed to extend abortion and same-sex "marriage" throughout the country.
Those interested in knowing more about the Faro Films project are invited to visit the group's website.