Wilson Wows with Honest Speech

2024 High School Oratory Contest

Pat, Oratory Judge, and Kendall, Oratory Winner

Although participation in the 35th annual High School Oratory Contest was low, Kendall Wilson gave a thought-provoking speech that surprised the audience and the judges. Wilson, a junior at The Potter’s House High School, received a $250 scholarship and was eligible for the statewide contest on May 25 in East Lansing.

With refreshing honesty, Wilson opened her speech admitting that she never thought about being prolife.

“I’ve always been prolife, but not by choice, more so by inheritance. That’s not to say that I haven’t always known abortion is wrong in my heart, but it is to say that until recently, I have never had to take it upon myself to understand what it means for me to say I’m prolife,” Wilson explained. “I never had to be prolife when it was uncomfortable.”

Wilson then shared a story of taking a campus tour at the University of Michigan, only to have the student guide happily proclaim that some of her on-campus volunteer work included helping to persuade students to vote for Proposal 3. This young woman never even considered that a student in the group would not agree with her work to enshrine abortion access into the Michigan Constitution.

“Though I tried to shake the feeling, I couldn’t help but feel unwelcome for the rest of the tour,” Wilson admitted. “Unwelcome in a place meant to make me feel at home.”

Wilson concluded her speech firmly stating, “I firmly believe that these isolating feelings become irrelevant when we understand the treatment of the unborn. So here I am today, boldly prolife, and I couldn’t be more proud to vocalize it and to be a voice for the voiceless.”

Judge Pat Firlik carefully evaluated Wilson’s speech and gave encouraging feedback to prepare her for the state contest.

Photos from the High School Oratory Contest can be viewed on the Grand Rapids Right to Life Flickr page.

Laura A.

An awesome woman who fights daily for the prolife cause!