Forty-three years. If that were a wedding anniversary, we’d splurge on a fancy dinner. If it were a birthday, we’d joke about being over the hill.
But it’s the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, so instead of celebrating, we mourn. And we march. And this year, in primaries and in November, we vote.
This year we have a real chance to end legalized abortion.
Next Friday, January 22, is the 43rd anniversary of the decisions that legalized abortion in all 50 states up to the moment of birth. Seven Supreme Court justices ignored that whole “inalienable right to life” thing and magically pulled a right to abortion out of the Due Process hat. Since then more than 58 million—million—children have been killed. Each January 22, more than a hundred thousand pro-lifers march on Washington and elsewhere to bear witness.
This Sunday, January 17, is National Sanctity of Human Life Day, proclaimed by President Ronald Reagan in 1984. Not all presidents since then have continued the annual proclamation. You can probably guess which ones have not. But we remember. Every year.
The fight for life has ebbed and flowed on the legislative beachhead since 1973, both in the states and at the federal level. But never in the 43-year history of legalized abortion have we had the opportunity we have this year. The US House and Senate recently put a bill on the president’s desk to essentially defund Planned Parenthood. Last Friday the president couldn’t wait to veto it. But the bill was significant anyway, because for the first time Congress passed legislation defunding this abortion giant. We finally have pro-life majorities in both the House and the Senate. Not enough to override a filibuster, but, finally, majorities. Now read this next sentence several times and let it sink in:
Had we elected a pro-life president in 2012, the bill would have become law.
[tweetthis] Had we elected a pro-life president in 2012, the bill to defund Planned Parenthood would have become law.[/tweetthis]
As the 2016 campaigns continue, you’ll be tempted to hit the mute button when candidates’ commercials come on. You’ll want to hang up on every robo-call. I can’t blame you for that! But this year several candidates are falling all over themselves to out-pro-life each another. This year we have a real shot to put a pro-life president in the White House.
Late last year I interviewed several leaders of the pro-life movement about the critical importance of this election cycle. Their insights were captured in an episode of Facing Life Head-On and on our annual Sanctity of Life radio special, both titled 2016: A Call to Action.
- Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser called this year “a transformative moment” and said ending abortion is “very, very possible in 2017.”
- Mia Love of Utah noted that while pro-lifers see people as assets, the pro-abortion camp sees them as liabilities. The line is clear: “This is about a child,” she said.
- Missy Stone, national field director for Students for Life, noted that the huge March for Life crowd is made up mostly of young people. And they’re learning to engage the controversy of abortion without fear, just as generations before them engaged civil rights and slavery.
- Citing deepening hostility to religious freedom and free speech, National Religious Broadcasters president Jerry Johnson called this year a “major turning point for the pro-life movement and our country.”
More than 600 radio stations across the country will broadcast 2016: A Call to Action in the next week or so, starting as early as today. If it’s not airing where you live, check back at this link on Saturday morning, when you’ll find the entire program in place of the trailer. Then PLEASE share it with your friends.
And get engaged. This is our year. This is the babies’ year. We dare not squander our God-given opportunity.