News articles and editorials in the wake of the latest Supreme Court decision on abortion try to foist a patina of inevitability and the seal of finality on the issue of “abortion rights.” The court ruled in a Texas case, among other things, that abortion clinics don’t have to be as well-equipped as surgical centers that don’t perform abortions. The ruling is a setback for the pro-life movement.
But take heart, this crusade isn’t over. The ruling from the high court won’t deter the very substantial pro-life movement in this country. It won’t stop the marches for life that take place in cities across the country, including Charlotte, and it will probably enliven what is always Washington, D.C.’s largest annual demonstration, the March for Life.
January is without a doubt the worst month of the year to plan an outdoor event. Yet every year, often in snow and biting cold, hundreds of thousands take to the streets of the capitol to defend innocent life. Most news organizations dodge coverage of the event and twiddle the day away in the warmth of their studios and offices. But thanks to news outlets like EWTN and even Periscope, the march is well-covered.
Over the past few years, there has been an interesting linguistic development for abortion supporters, or Pro-Choice as they prefer to be called. The words “reproductive freedom” and “abortion rights” have been added to everyday language, presumably to avoid using phrases like “taking innocent life,” or “killing the unborn.”
The 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized this slaughter looked into the shadow of the ninth amendment of the constitution and saw a new right, the right to privacy. Nowhere in the ruling can you find the phrases “abortion rights,” “right to abortion” or the oddly contradictory “reproductive freedom.”
For more than 40 years, elected officials around the country have been trying to curb abortions via regulations in state law. Without them we get people like Dr. Kermit Gosnell, whose abortion clinic in Philadelphia was a slaughterhouse for mother and child alike and not quite the doctor/patient relationship envisioned by the justices who voted in favor of Roe v. Wade.
The group-speak of the Pro-Choice side doesn’t end with the questionable use of the word freedom in discussing reproduction. It apparently feels compelled to belittle the Pro-Life side by referring to us inaccurately and inelegantly as “abortion rights opponents.”
We are Pro-Life Americans. There are millions of us. We can be found in thousands of churches engaged in the always-triumphal act of prayer. Hundreds of thousands of us can be found in marches, picket lines and voting booths advocating for the innocent and for common sense among judges who misunderstand the fundamental right to life. The Supreme Court has been wrong before; think of the Dred Scott decision that gave a green light to slavery and made the Civil War inevitable. The justices are on the wrong side of life.
We are not going to go away. Our prayers, our marches, our advocacy and our votes will cascade like a flowing stream that will inevitably wear down the marble stones that make up the columns that prop up the Supreme Court.
Keep the faith.
Hains is Director of Communication for the Diocese of Charlotte