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"Did I deserve the death penalty?" Woman conceived in rape asks Citizens' Assembly

Rebecca Kiessling, a mother and attorney, who was conceived in rape, has addressed the Citizens’ Assembly to ask if she deserved the death penalty for the crime of a rapist.   Rebecca’s powerful and moving presentation also shared photographs of other women, men and children who had been conceived in rape, and included mothers who were raising their babies - or have given their babies up for adoption - after a pregnancy following rape.  

Rebecca use the time allotted to Youth Defence by the Assembly to share her testimony, helping to address the pro-abortion bias in the testimony brought before the Assembly to date. In the last session a platform had been given to abortionists from Britain and the US.   

Rebecca mother was raped at knifepoint, and she became pregnant following the assault. She was then advised by her rape counsellor that she could obtain illegal abortions from back alley clinics since abortion was illegal by Michigan law. However, she was deterred from having an illegal abortion due to the unsanitary area and practices there. After she had given birth to Kiessling, her mother gave her up for adoption.   

Rebecca founded "Save The 1", a pro-life organization that serves as a ministry for women who chose to reject abortion despite being pregnant from rape. She says that women need support and compassion after rape, and that children conceived in this way are also innocent human beings who are deserving of the same protection as any other child.   

“I am not a ‘rapist’s child’. I am a human being. I am so thankful to my mother for my life, and all children should be protected however they were conceived. None of us are deserving of the death penalty,” she says.   Rebecca told the assembly that ”women aren’t having abortions because they hate babies” but that “every abortion is fear driven” and that society was failing women when abortions took place.   

She also pointed out that abortion after rape was “yet another traumatic violation” and pointed out that abortion was used to cover-up rape and sexual abuse. “Sex traffickers and child molesters love abortion. It destroys the evidence, it protects and enables them, and allows them to continue perpetrating abuse,” she said.   

Rebecca’s powerful testimony has previously changed the heart of presidential candidates and many legislators across the U.S., Canada and Europe. She has also helped pregnant rape victims all around the world to choose life for their children, and helped rape victims to share their stories and lobby for better protections under the law, including the right to deny rapists custody of children.


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