Media Promote Abortion Hotel, Ignore Help for Moms Choosing Life


Media outlets, from CNN to HuffPost, recently latched on to a Michigan hotel after its manager offered to house women seeking abortions.

But writers and journalists routinely overlook free resources for other pregnant women – mothers who want to keep their babies.

On May 16, a hotel manager in Yale, Michigan, promised free lodging to pregnant women traveling out of state for an abortion. Shelley O’Brien runs The Yale Hotel, located in a small town an hour or so north of Detroit. To publicize her offer, she turned to Facebook.

“Dear sisters that live in Alabama, Ohio, Georgia, Arkansas, Missouri, or any of the other states that follow with similar laws restricting [abortion]access,” she wrote, “if you can make it to Michigan, we will support you with several nights lodging, and transportation to and from your appointment.”

A few days later, she added that she had “received numbers of people willing to help drive” women to Michigan for abortions.

“If you need help, please message me,” she wrote. “We’ve got some amazing people in our village… we’ve got your backs.”

The Facebook post now boasts more than 3,000 shares – and the media have pushed its message even further.

On June 8, CNN producer Harmeet Kaur recognized O’Brien’s “bold stance.” A day later, HuffPost reporter Dominique Mosbergen decribed the manager as a grandmother “Incensed by the spate of legislation severely limiting abortion rights.”

For International Business Times, Kenneth Roth wrote that same day about the “free accommodations to women needing to leave their home state to receive the procedure.”

“Hatred in one phone call, a $100 donation in the next,” Time magazine reporter Alejandro de la Garza wrote of responses to O’Brien’s housing offer on June 9. “That was Sunday morning for the Yale Hotel’s general manager after she posted on Facebook.”

For ABC, multimedia reporter Morgan Winsor covered the hotel “offering free accommodation to any woman traveling to the state to have an abortion” on June 10. Multiple other outlets, including the New York Daily News and the Washington Post, also covered O’Brien’s offer.

What they didn’t cover – and generally don’t cover – is the free help available to pregnant women nationwide provided by pregnancy centers and the larger pro-life movement.

Just in Michigan, there are “more than 150 locations” that “offer pregnancy and adoption help services,” according to the Right to Life of Michigan. The pro-life organization lists those locations on a map in the hopes of connecting pregnant women to housing, parenting assistance, healthcare, and material aid.

Although they are routinely vilified by abortion supporters, pregnancy centers nationwide offer pregnant women and new moms free clothing, housing, medical supplies, educational classes, and other assistance.

And, if those fall short, regular pro-life citizens also do their part to help. In one of the responses to O’Brien’s Facebook post, a woman named Dorothy commented that she was “sad people are celebrating Abortion.”

“[F]or the record 2 of my children are adopted,” she revealed, before countering O’Brien by telling women that “if you are pregnant and need help come stay with me during your short 9 months and I will adopt your child.”

If the media want women to be aware of their options, they should cover all of those options. Especially when the difference could determine the course of a human person’s life.

The views expressed here are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views of


About Author


Katie Yoder serves as the associate culture editor at NewsBusters and is a columnist for She is also the Joe and Betty Anderlik Fellow for the Media Research Center’s culture division. Follow her on Twitter @k_yoder.

1 Comment

  1. “mothers who want to keep their babies”. As opposed to what? Wanting to keep your child is not what makes a woman a mother. Becoming pregnant with a child does. Pro lifers need to stop using that stupid phrase which panders to the rhetoric of those they purport to oppose. Any morally cognizant individual with the means of conducting their life within the legitimate constraints of genuine humanity would always expect a mother to provide the means of continued life and sustenance for their own child without interference. The choice is not whether or not to be a mother or continue to be a mother, it is whether or not the impregnated individual will act like the mother she already is. Mothers who choose to act like mothers and spurn the inhumanity of hiring a contract killer to slaughter their own child are simply embracing their humanity in behaving in a manner consistent with their own created nature. This is not the making of a choice between two or more possible responses to having become pregnant with a child but the only response that can be embraced which is consistent with her own nature and the state she is already in. A woman who is carrying a developing child is already a mother and is expected to respond to that fact in a manner that is consistent with her own humanity. In this sense a woman is not choosing between two possibilities at all when she declines deadly intervention into the life of the child she is carrying within her body. She is simply acting in the only manner a woman can that is consistent with her own humanity and the state of motherhood which already exists within her. She is not choosing but allowing the child to be formed within her without interference until her child is given birth. Those who consort to kill their own children are simply murders acting in the most reprehensibly inconsistent manner possible with respect to their humanity. They diverge from the only legitimate choice a mother can make with respect to her child which is to spurn the notion of attempting retroactively to make any choice at all with respect to her child that has already been made. The only pertinent question, the irrevocable choice of acting in a manner that that enables motherhood in the first place, is in the past. The time for choosing motherhood is over and the false choice of “keeping” ones own child is simply a myth for anyone with shred of cognitive ability with respect to their own humanity.

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