The Pro-Life Alliance of Gays And Lesbians

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Open Letter To March For Life Leader Regarding Arrest Of Pro-Life Gays

The following is an open letter to the March for Life leader, Nellie Gray, from PLAGAL president, Cecilia Brown.

Dear Miss Nellie Gray,

Allow me to introduce myself. I am Cecilia Brown, President of PLAGAL, The Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians. I am sure you had never heard of me until recently, that is, until after you had ordered my arrest.

I want to convey to you my displeasure with your actions on January 22, 2002, in which you ordered the use of police force to deny open participation of a group of peaceful pro-life individuals who happen to be gay. PLAGAL has spent a lot of time bringing the pro-life message to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered (GLBT) community. PLAGAL has worked diligently to build bridges with pro-life organizations as well as organizations within the GLBT community. This work has not been easy.

PLAGAL members have sustained a lot of criticism and hateful words because of our work. We continue to work diligently because we believe in the pro-life message that "Human Rights Start When Human Life Begins". Your actions at the March for Life have done nothing but make our work harder. For that I am deeply upset. The work PLAGAL has faithfully pursued to bring the pro-life message to the GLBT community has been hurt because of your inability to see past your own thoughts and beliefs. How can PLAGAL convince pro-life individuals within the GLBT community to become active within the pro-life cause when they hear about the actions that "traditional" pro-lifers inflict on "non-traditional" pro-lifers?

You may not wish to believe this, but abortion is not just a "religious" issue. Abortion affects everyone no matter what color they are, what social and economic status a person is, what religious beliefs or lack of belief a person has, it also does not matter what political affiliation a person is. Abortion even affects those within the GLBT community.

If you are human this issue affects you. All humans have friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances or themselves that may be faced with a crisis pregnancy. I, myself, have had two crisis pregnancies when I was trying to be someone I am not -- heterosexual.

I had an abortion and have regretted that deeply. It has taken me a long time to heal. I also have a wonderful daughter that I cannot imagine living without. The GLBT community has bisexuals, both men and women, who may find themselves in crisis, lesbians who have been raped, teenage members of the GLBT community who may be experimenting with their sexuality and become pregnant or become fathers.

Actions such as yours against non-traditional pro-lifers cause at least three problems:

  • One –- When those within the GLBT find themselves in crisis pregnancies they feel they have nowhere to turn for help. They will avoid coming to a crisis pregnancy center or to a traditional pro-lifer for fear of being judged or for the fear of being treated badly. Without a reliable and life-affirming infrastructure of support, they may choose abortion instead.
  • Two –- It makes it difficult for those within the GLBT community who are pro-life to want to help women in crisis. When pro-lifers find out we are gay we are often treated with disrespect and told our help is not needed. This has happened to PLAGAL members already. This only hurts women in crisis. This is indeed sad especially since God knows that crisis pregnancy centers can use all the help they can get.
  • Three –- By your divisive, malicious and uncharitable act of exclusion you send the erroneous message to those who may be interested in joining our noble cause, but who are not of your religious or political ilk, that the pro-life movement, is more interested in arresting peaceful participating gays and lesbians, than in truly helping women choose life.

If we want to change the laws dealing with the issue of abortion-on-demand, it will take the work of a united pro-life movement to accomplish this. It will require that all pro-lifers put aside their differences on other issues and come together to work on this one issue. PLAGAL knows it can be done. Our membership proves it. Many PLAGAL members do not have the same beliefs on a variety of other issues but on the issue of abortion we stand united in support of women and their unborn children to live. This is what makes us strong.

Rest assured Miss Gray, your actions have not deterred me from my pro-life work. By having me arrested, for simply being a peaceful participant who happens to be gay and out, you have only increased my resolve to work for the expansion of an inclusive pro-life movement. This will be a united civil rights movement where all peaceful pro-lifers can work together—without fear of prejudice or bigotry. Have me arrested again if you must. I will not rest until I have accomplished this task -- with or without your approval.


Cecilia Brown
Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians

All those wishing to express their disgust with the March for Life for this malicious and divisive act of exclusion are encouraged to contact the March for Life at For pictures and the latest information on this developing story, please visit our website at

The Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians (PLAGAL) was organized in 1990 to advance the pro-life message within the lesbian and gay community. PLAGAL is a 501(c)(3) Massachusetts-based corporation with nation-wide membership and active groups in several major cities in the United States.