A Grim Anniversary

Tomorrow our nation commemorates the 30th anniversary of judicial activism’s most ignoble achievement.

Back in 1973, I remember my father coming home from his monthly Men’s Club meeting at Epiphany of Our Lord Catholic Church in St. Louis with tears still streaking down his cheeks. Being the kind of man he is, he tried to hide them from the kids. “I can’t believe I fought two wars for this country, only to have those bastards send us all to hell,” he told my mother in the kitchen. “Those bastards” were the Supreme Court and those who supported the sickening Roe v. Wade decision. The Men’s Club had just seen an hour-long movie about abortion. Being mostly comprised of WWII veterans, the audience had seen enough killing in its life, and it knew instinctively the difference between killing and medicine. Some in attendance had liberated death camps just 28 years before—they could smell the film.

Since then, my father and so many other Americans have built a moral callus to abortion. He still believes it murder, but, like those “ordinary” Germans living a block from a Nazi death camp, he says, “what can I do?” For 30 years, the abortion industry has fed tiny humans to their jaws of death cheered on by such seemingly innocuous organizations as the National Education Association, the Teamsters, the AFL-CIO—organizations that once stood up for the sentiments and norms and mores of guys like my dad. They now stand for death on demand.

In commemoration of this horrid event, I ask members of Congress to join me in the only form protest that seems to work: prayer.

In 1992, all seemed lost on the abortion front. Bill Clinton promised to make abortion the national sacrament of his sexual-materialistic church. Public opinion supporting abortion on demand reached an all-time high, and the number of abortions was at a crescendo—1.6 million in 1990 alone. Those who stood for life seemed to have lost. The January 22 rallies in the early 90s were impotent and empty. The whole pro-life movement had lost its steam.

The last thing to try before despair is prayer. I think a lot of us turned to prayer between 1992 and 1995. We knew that the screaming and marching and shooting was costing us ground. The pro-lifers (or anti-abortionists, as I call myself) had become as shrill and lunatical as the pro-abortionists always had been. We were becoming, according to the media, what we despised.

Since 1995, the numbers of people, according to polls, supporting abortion on demand have dropped significantly, now representing a minority of 32% to 41%, depending on the poll. Overwhelming majorities of Americans oppose partial-birth abortions for any reason. Opinion is changing toward life, away from those dark forces that want to kill babies for the convenience of their mothers and fathers. And this sea change came about during a period in which abortion was not hotly debated anywhere. The 2003 rallies for life are being treated more respectfully by the media, and not just Fox News. I feel the worm turning.

We are a long way from restoration of balance on abortion, but we are winning where it counts—the hearts and minds of the people. Please continue to pray for America’s reaffirmation of life. Please attend a pro-life rally or worship (or is it mourning?) service. And, please, vote to ban partial-birth abortions as a first step toward reclaiming our dignity.