If you've perused Twitter the past couple of days, you may have seen mention of a pro-life tent traveling with the Vans Warped Tour.
The secular non-profit, Rock For Life, intends to start a conversation about abortion rights across the country, and on Monday's Warped stop in Scranton, PA, its tent was showcasing multiple strong statements. The tent features shirts that say "Life," "Human Rights For All" and "Adoption Saves Lives,” some of which has sparked an outcry from the pro-choice community online.
"I don't think [these] shirts are too controversial," says Rock For Life staffer Hannah Cowan. (Worth noting: The organization also sells "All Lives Matters" shirts, which weren't available at the festival.) Most critics have taken issue with the fact that there's no countering pro-choice tent available at Warped, but Cowan doesn’t see that as an issue.
"We're not here to push our opinions on people," Cowan says. "We just want to spread the message of life."
After speaking with the organization, we took to the festival grounds to find out what concert attendees thought about the tent and its presence at Warped Tour.
Mason Sigman, Pennsylvania
"I think you're free to stand up for anything you believe in. In my opinion, pro-life and any other major political issue is all a matter of personal opinion. It's not something that should be discriminated against at a festival like this. I would not discourage [talking about it] if I were the festival founder."
Shawn Dearmitt, Pennsylvania
"I don't think having a pro-life tent takes away from the festival. I think it helps people understand that there are people here that want to have other people come into this world regardless of what's going on. I'm indecisive on the issue."
Mackenzie Shugrue, Pennsylvania
"The whole point of festivals is for people to express themselves through music or art. People say ‘Don't kill animals,' so why not say it's a woman's right? If it bothers you that much, don't visit the tent."
Ashley Hahn, Pennsylvania
"I don't think the pro-life tent takes away from the festival. I think it's just to [get the message] out there. It might bug everyone else, but it doesn't bug me. I feel like they should have the [‘All Lives Matter’ shirt] out."
Ashley Necro, Pennsylvania
"It is what it is."
Nick Necro, Pennsylvania
"I don't think that it takes away from the festival. You need to have different perspectives. We're pro-choice, but everyone should be out there and have an opinion. But I think there should be a pro-choice tent, too. There should be a perfect balance, especially at a festival like Warped Tour."
Emily Migris, New Jersey
"I think there are a lot of different things going on here. There are anti-smoking tents, so the [pro-life tent] fits in."
Morgan Miller, Pennsylvania
"Obviously there's a little bit of space for everything. There are people who are pro-life too, so it's always good to have a little bit of everything at Warped Tour."
Jennifer Bender, Pennsylvania
"I think it's a personal decision. I'm pro-choice for myself, but pro-life for my daughters. I think the pro-life tent causes a lot of controversy because a lot of people might take it as a religious standpoint."
Miriam Hernandez, New Jersey
"I think it's wrong to have abortions. If you didn't want the baby, you could just give it up for adoption. If women are grown enough to have sex, they're grown enough to take care of a baby."
(Photos by Jatnna Nunez, Fuse)