Listen to “Hush”

A few months ago, I saw an advance screening of a documentary from what seemed to me an unlikely team. The “Hush” film’s producer and director take different views of abortion. They set out not to assert one side or another. Instead, they made a film about abortion’s effect on women’s health. The director was still pro-choice when she finished making the film, but she was troubled by her findings.

“Start a healthy conversation,” as the production team says in the film’s Twitter hashtag. A good goal, and an urgent one.

“Hush” went into formal release a couple of months ago. A library near my home is hosting a screening next week. A friend reported to me tonight that she’s getting online pushback for promoting the film, from people who dispute the film’s findings – without having seen the film.

Frustrating. Dismaying. Yet I hold out hope that the protesters will come to the screening. They might be surprised to discover that “Hush” isn’t a pro-life movie per se. It’s one woman’s search for answers to her legitimate questions about what, if anything, abortion does to women besides induce the death of a preborn child (a term with which the director might well take issue).

I’m grateful to the documentary’s director, Punam Kumar Gill, for asking questions and having the courage to follow the answers wherever they took her.

I hope the protesters in my area choose to come inside and watch the film. Let the pushback wait until we’re all working with the same information. Better yet, let’s work toward that healthy conversation the filmmakers are encouraging.

Read more about “Hush” and where to find it at

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