Reasons why the pro-life movement is winning

Judie Brown
January 30, 2012
Reproduced with Permission

The decades of legal abortion may appear to be a stalemate; however, the pro-life movement is encouraged. Just look at the Waco area. Our abortion provider, Planned Parenthood in Waco, was part of a four clinic alliance just a year ago. Today, clinics in Marlin, Groesbeck, and on Columbus Avenue are closed.

Here are my reasons for optimism for Waco and nationwide:

Science and technology have benefited the pro-life movement. Ultrasound improvements show the beauty and humanity of preborn life. The reality of viability outside the womb has moved to earlier weeks of pregnancy. At the time of Roe, viability of preborn life was 30 weeks or later, or roughly the third trimester of pregnancy. Today, babies are living after just 20 to 22 weeks of pregnancy.

Popular culture has become more respectful of preborn life. A handful of movies with choices for preborn life were released in 2007. My favorite is Bella.

Many people from the other side have converted to the pro-life cause. These have included post-abortive moms, abortion workers, and actual abortionists. The late Bernard Nathanson was a leader for abortion legalization and performed over 60,000 abortions before the day he watched an abortion via ultrasound. Norma McCorvey, the Roe of Roe v. Wade, is now 100 percent pro-life. In 2009, Abby Johnson, an abortion clinic director in Bryan, Texas, became pro-life after viewing an ultrasound-guided abortion. Her astonishing story is told in the book unPLANNED: The Dramatic True Story of a Former Planned Parenthood Leader's Journey across the Life Line.

American youth are increasingly pro-life. In 2010, Gallup released a retrospective report on its abortion polling since 1975. One of the major headings was "Americans Aged 18 to 29 Trending More Anti-Abortion." The core polling question asked if abortion should be "legal under any circumstances," "legal under certain circumstances," or "illegal in all circumstances." At 23 percent, the 18 to 29 age group was the highest advocating that abortion be illegal in all circumstances. This 23 percent response was up from 14 percent in the early 1990s.

The promises and expectations of abortion advocates of the 60s and 70s have not materialized. One of the predictions was that if moms were allowed have their preborn babies terminated, this would lead to a significant decline in child abuse. To the contrary, after decades of abortion on demand under Roe v. Wade, cases of child abuse have skyrocketed from 2.16 to 10.6 cases per 1,000 children in the population.

The Christian imperative of opposing the unjust killing of the innocent preborn has brought Catholic and Evangelical Christians together. While theological differences are real, nothing should hinder our working shoulder to shoulder to come to the defense of those totally incapable of defending themselves. One of the most gratifying experiences of working within the Waco pro-life movement has been solidarity with brothers and sisters from different Christian traditions.

The abortion industry has been plagued by bad publicity resulting from the activities of some practitioners. In January of 2011, Kermit Gosnell was arrested and charged with the murder of seven newborn babies at his abortion facility in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In December, Steven Brigham and Nicola Riley were charged with five counts of murder resulting from activities at a Maryland abortion facility. Available space and decorum prevent me from going into details.

The last reason for optimism is the flood of testimonies of post-abortive women. These personal testimonies tell of regret and turmoil following abortions. The harm is psychological, spiritual, and physical. For research studies on the impact of abortion on women, see Organizations of post-abortive women include Operation Outcry and Silent No More Awareness, headed by actress Jennifer O'Neill. Many organizations assist women in post-abortion recovery. These include CareNet Pregnancy Center of Central Texas and the Catholic Diocese of Austin.

These are just some of the reasons those in the pro-life movement should remain optimistic. Our movement is growing daily and welcoming to new laborers in the vineyard.