#ShoutYourAbortion took Twitter by storm a couple weeks ago and has generated a huge response since, both in support and in opposition.

The hashtag was meant to remove the negative stigma against women who’d had an abortion. The originators of the hashtag, activists Amelia Bonow and Kimberly Mor- rison, wanted to free women from living under an oppres- sive silence about what is, in their opinion, “just another medical procedure.”

Supporters did just as the hashtag suggests and shouted about their abortions. Some who opposed it shouted back with disapproval, threats and insults.

One Twitter user said, “Why are people happily en- gaging in a celebration over murder[?] #ShoutYourAbor- tion makes me sick.”

Another said, “No More Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell about completely legal, moral, common medical procedure. #ShoutYour Abortion.”

And yet another said, “#shoutyourabortion is an absolute vile disgusting glo- rification of baby genocide.”

These posts give you a brief summary of the many opinions tweeted on the is- sue. However, in some cases, the “shouting” got so loud and violent that Bonow had to leave her home because of the threats.

In response to the women shouting their abortions, another hashtag was gener- ated: #ShoutYourAdoption, a hashtag that had men and women posting about their adoption stories.

This positive response fo- cused on a different option that women can choose when they find  themselves with an unexpected pregnancy.

However, not all responses were positive. Some people re- sponded by declaring women who have had an abortion should be physically harmed. This goes too far. This is vio- lent. This is ineffective. This is uncalled for. This is unhelpful. And it is childish.

Colossians 3:12 says, “Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meek- ness, longsuffering.” Some people, in the name of their beliefs, shout out awful and unkind things—Christians who claim the name of Christ, turn around and hurl insults at another person created in the image of God.

A Christian’s entire pur- pose in life is to want to cause others to draw closer to God, not to give others an impression of Him that is far from accurate.

Christians and non-Chris- tians alike are getting nowhere by attacking the people they want to reach. Proverbs 15:1 says that a gentle word works better at ending strife than a harsh word, and you don’t have to claim to be a Christian to see the truth in that state- ment.

When trying to convince someone to think as you think, or even to see your point of view, hurling insults is not the way to do it. Threatening someone’s life doesn’t help the cause you’re fighting for.

Stick up for what you be- lieve in, certainly, but don’t make yourself look like a fool in the process.

Neither parties will do any listening until one side decides to stop shouting.