A billboard advocating for abortion rights once featured on a Mesa County billboard near the Utah border has been replaced by an anti-abortion advertisement.
“Human rights for all,” states the new ad, sponsored by Colorado Right to Life, next to an image of a fetus with the caption, “8-10 week (first trimester) preborn human.”
“Welcome to Colorado,” the old billboard read, “where you can get a safe, legal abortion.” It was funded by Keep Abortion Safe – a project of the progressive advocacy group ProgressNow Colorado.
The anti-choice billboard will remain up for at least a month, according to Susan Sutherland, Colorado Right to Life’s vice president, but she hopes donations will allow the ad – and an identical one on Colfax and Speer in Denver – to stay up longer.
She characterized the ads as a “direct response” to the ones placed by Keep Abortion Safe earlier this year.
The Keep Abortion Safe ad was intended “to remind people coming from the conservative state of Utah that they are now in a place that trusts and allows pregnant people to make their own healthcare decisions for themselves,” ProgressNow Colorado’s Alex Ferencz said in a press release.
But according to Sutherland, “There’s nothing safe about abortion… Even Planned Parenthood will readily admit that there’s a baby involved.”
Abortion is considered by medical professionals to be a safe medical procedure, and Planned Parenthood uses the medical term “fetus.”
Colorado law allows for abortion throughout pregnancy, but it’s surrounded by states with legislatures trying to make it more difficult for women to access abortion care.
For example, Utah – which only has two abortion clinics – requires a 72-hour waiting period for those seeking abortions and the distribution of anti-abortion literature to women seeking abortions.
Because of policies like this across the mountain west and the high plains, facilities providing abortions in Colorado also serve women from across the region.
Sutherland said that “walking yourself into Colorado to murder somebody should not be an option and it certainly is wrong.”
“Human rights belong to all created beings,” she said. “Every human being from fertilization to natural death deserves to be protected and loved.”
“We want to put out a message that there are people in Colorado who still stand squarely on the side of life,” Sutherland said. “Human beings, being created in the image of god, deserve to have those human rights afforded to them.”