Vice President Mike and Karen Pence made a surprise visit to the 46th annual March for Life on Friday. President Trump then spoke to the massive crowd gathered on the Washington Mall via video message from the White House.
On Jan. 13, 1984, President Ronald Reagan issued a proclamation designating Jan. 22 as the first National Sanctity of Human Life Day. (He chose that day because Jan. 22, 1973, was the day the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion in all 50 states.)
The annual tradition to commemorate the Sanctity of Human Life was continued by President George H.W. Bush, discontinued under President Bill Clinton, resumed under President George W. Bush, discontinued under President Barack Obama, and resumed again under President Donald Trump. Trump was also the first president to give an address at the March for Life via live video feed
Churches around the United States honor the day by celebrating God’s gift of life in the womb, commemorating the many lives lost to abortion, and committing themselves to protecting human life at every stage. (Churches annually recognize the third Sunday in January as Sanctity of Human Life Sunday. In 2019, the date is Jan. 20.)
Despite how our country has drifted in a secular progressive direction, there has still been much progress to save and preserve human life in the womb under President Trump’s administration. As the vice president tweeted on Friday, “We’ve reinstated the Mexico City Policy, allowed states to defund Planned Parenthood & nominated judges who will uphold our God-given liberties enshrined in our Constitution.”
President Trump added that he is supporting moving the Hyde Amendment through the U.S. Senate to prevent taxpayer funding of abortion in spending bills. (This he did as Senate Democrats on Thursday blocked a bill that would have written into law a permanent ban on taxpayer money being used to fund abortions.) In a letter to Congress issued Friday, the president promised he will veto any legislation that “weakens the protection of human life.”
The Family Policy Alliance summarized some of the U.S. states’ pro-life actions that have occurred or are underway, to which I’ve added a few others:
- In North Dakota, Iowa and Arkansas, state legislatures have passed bills to protect life in the womb once a heartbeat is detected. And now, we expect at least five more states to work on passing these bills this year. While radical courts stop these laws from taking effect, it shows that the people want to protect preborn babies.
- In this past election, Heidi Heitkamp – a pro-abortion U. S. senator from North Dakota who voted to allow abortions after 20 weeks, when babies can feel pain – was soundly defeated by Kevin Cramer, an advocate for life.
- Two bills introduced in the Wyoming House of Representatives seek tighter regulations on abortion.
- A Florida bill would ban abortions if a heartbeat is detected
- A Utah lawmaker wants to ban abortions after 15 weeks.
- Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee) has introduced her first bill to the U.S. Senate that would strip all abortion providers of federal funding.
- A spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood said the organization has suffered from a shortage of abortion providers in some states
- As for the U.S. Supreme Court, Americans confirmed Justice Brett Kavanaugh – another pro-constitution/pro-life justice like Neil Gorsuch.
- The Supreme Court could even soon hear a “eugenics statute” suit challenging Roe v. Wade
Most amazing of all is that LifeNews.com reported this past week that “Forty Abortion Clinics Closed in 2018, 79 percent of All Abortion Clinics Open in 1991 Have Shut Down.”
Operation Rescue conducted a survey of all abortion facilities in the U.S. from Nov. 26 through Dec. 14, 2018, and concluded: In the U.S., there are “467 facilities that conduct surgical abortions – down dramatically from the high-water mark of 2,176 surgical facilities documented in 1991. This represents a massive 79 percent decrease in the number of surgical abortion facilities over the past 27 years.” (Unfortunately, medical abortion clinics, those that terminate babies in the womb through drugs and chemicals, are slowly increasing. However, in 2018, eight medical abortion facilities closed permanently.)
Through the past four decades, a Gallup poll asked Americans: “Do you think abortions should be legal under any circumstances, legal only under certain circumstances or illegal in all circumstances?” Only one in five people replied “legal in all circumstances.” Only one in four said “legal in any circumstance.” Roughly 50 percent from 1976 through 2018 answered: “Legal only under certain circumstances.”
That is why Vice President Pence said at the 46th annual March for Life: “We gather here today because we know we still have much work to do. We urge you to stand strong. Stand with that love and compassion as you stand for life, and know that we will stand with you until that great day comes where we restore the sanctity of life to the center of American law.”
Then the president explained the sanctity of life in his taped address, “When we look into the eyes of a newborn child, we see the beauty of the human soul and the majesty of God’s creation. We know that every life has meaning, and that every life is worth protecting. … Every child is a sacred gift of God.”
As President Trump has committed, so I do: “I will always defend the first right in our Declaration of Independence: the right to life.”
Unborn babies are also protected by the opening words in the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. – That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
No surprise that Thomas Jefferson explained preserving human value and life was government’s primary role: “The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government.”
We didn’t start the movement of valuing and protecting life in the womb; it was handed down to us by America’s founders.
When I was growing up, the following question would have been regarded as odd: “When does human life begin?” But today it has become a debate from our homes to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Let me finish by sharing with you a very personal and amazing true story that happened to my wife, Gena, and me, as I described in my New York Times bestseller “Black Belt Patriotism.”
Twelve days into Gena’s pregnancy with our twins, she developed a severe case of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome, a complication from fertility medications. Her abdomen swelled up with fluid called Ascites, making her look like she was already nine months’ pregnant. Her ovaries were the size of footballs. The fluid caused so much pressure on her internal organs that she needed oxygen to breathe.
Gena’s condition was critical, and the doctor stated she had just two options. Because there is no immediate remedy, she could choose to try and ride out the long, painful and unpredictable road to recovery, realizing that she and the twins’ lives were hanging in the balance. Or she could abort the pregnancy. Gena and I felt truly vulnerable and helpless.
Many of our well-meaning friends and family advised us to abort the pregnancy. Gena and I talked together and prayed to God about what we should do.
Then Gena related to me the story of what happened to her during the embryo transfer. Our babies were just two days old. Gena was lying on the hospital bed in the small procedure room, nervously waiting for the embryos to be transferred into her womb.
The nurse asked the doctor to show my wife how her little baby embryos were being taken care of while waiting for the transfer to her womb. Agreeably the doctor shook her head yes and the nurse elevated the head of Gena’s bed. She saw something that had the appearance of a window, but was encased in solid steel. Fascinated and curious, Gena thought whatever is behind that secured window must be of great value.
As the doctor opened the steel plated door exposing the window, a bright light illuminated out. What followed the light is what affirmed our view of conception forever. Gena heard music, the most beautiful classical music she had ever heard, being quietly played to our two-day old unborn children. At that very moment she realized these doctors knew that embryos responded well and had a better chance at survival when provided with a life-enriching environment such as this.
Gena was forever changed at that moment, and so was I. We realized in a big personal way that human life truly begins at conception.
After Gena conveyed her experience, she asked me, “Why would God be so gracious to bless us with these two miracles of life, if He were not going to see us through this pregnancy? We need to trust Him!” I agreed with her, and we did. We followed our hearts and faiths, and never turned back.
For the past 18 years, Gena has been a strong supporter and advisory board member of Council for Life in Dallas, which empowers people of all ages to make life-affirming choices.
This was just the beginning of a long journey and lots of God’s lessons along the way to the birth and raising of our twins, Danilee and Dakota (pictured below), who are now 17 years old and graduating this year from high school! Congrats, kids! And congrats most of all to us and our family that God blessed our lives with your precious souls! We are so proud of you!
(For more on how America’s founders regarded human life, I recommend reading chapter six, “Reclaim the Value of Human Life,” in “Black Belt Patriotism,” which is now more than half off at “ WND’s SuperStore .” Also, check out all the pro-life resources at EPM.org and WallBuilders.)