On the March For Life

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fellows_2010small.jpgThe Primacy of Culture and The March for Life

This time every year, and in a special way today, the true and ever strengthened fabric of America  covers again the grounds of our Nation’s capital and presents itself before the rule of law.  Media and other facets of this great Country may call this an event.  Others may refer to it as a mere protest or passing demonstration.  But with eyes of admiration I watch the growing number of young and vibrant pro-life marchers and the vision before me is so very much more than an organized appeal for truth and justice for the unborn.   It is the vision of our Culture: an ever alive, ever renewing reality of the people of America.  It is America.  What a great vision!

Despite many fears and mistaken beliefs in society, our policies, economies, wars and commodities are not the driving force of our great Nation, nor do they define it.  What drives our Nation and what defines our history and our future is our Culture: our values, beliefs, consciences and heritage.  To quote again Jefferson in the words of Reagan, “We are a people with a government, not a government with a people.”  Policies and economies are mere products of the body of people they exist to serve, they are not, per se, America.

The March for Life today, and every year past, is more than an event, it is a great breath into the fabric of America; a breath that renews and creates a magnificent wave in our canvas; a wave that blows an ever stronger and ever-billowing fabric of Culture over all life, born and unborn.  Today we have witnessed the defining force of America. We have witnessed a Culture of Life, and indeed, the Gospel of Life.  What great hope we must have!

Jennifer Kimball, Be.L., Director

 

Roe v. Wade and the Culture of Life

What did opponents of slavery over the course of two hundred years tell their children?  Abolitionism began in America in the late 17th century among unsophisticated German and Dutch Quakers and Mennonites.  It took a hundred years before societies for abolition would be launched, and another hundred before emancipation. 

The federally guaranteed right to kill the unborn is 38 years old; at the State level it’s only a few years older.  To those who’ve been fighting since the early 70s, it seems like the abortion controversy has been going on forever.  It hasn’t.  Historically speaking, it began yesterday.  Societies for abolition of abortion are still young, even though the founding generation is growing old.

So what do I tell my five children (Rose 15, Christian 14, Mary 10, Edmund 4, and Thomas 15 months)?  Can I promise them they’ll see emancipation of the unborn in their lifetime?  Certainly not.  God alone knows if they’ll see it in their lifetime.

I tell them that the fight for the unborn is still underway; that lots of babies are being killed; that the babies need them; but that destitute and forgotten pregnant women also need them; and that there is NO conflict between justice for the one and charity for the other.  I tell them that sex is for marriage; that marriage is for self-giving; that self-giving welcomes new life; that new life is vulnerable and needs protection; and that “if not you, then who?”  I tell them that defending the unborn will not make them popular; but that the thirst for popularity is poison.  I tell them that very few things are worth dying for, but that among those things are Jesus, his Church, the moral law, and the babies.

Dearest pro-life friends and allies: no matter your age, you are still youthful and strong.  Keep fighting the good fight!  You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Christian Brugger, D.Phil., Senior Fellow

 

Personal Reflections on the March for Life

The March for Life has been one of the single most influential and inspirational events of my life.  Growing up in the Washington, D.C. area, I have participated in the March for Life every year for the past 17 years.  The effect of my participation in the March has been profound; it educated me from a young age of the grave importance of the abortion issue, and instilled in me a deep desire to fight for a culture of life.  It impressed upon me the horrific nature of the Roe v. Wade decision, and the need to overturn it.  The March for Life is one of the reasons why I am writing to you today, and why I continue to actively strive to promote a culture of life through my legal writing and work.

During my high school years at Oakcrest School, I was honored to be a Master of Ceremonies at the Youth Mass and Rally in Constitution Hall held annually prior to the March for Life.  I remember the throngs of youths who filled the Hall; their chanting voices and hopeful faces are still vivid and full of life in my mind. 

Even today, after attending the March for Life year after year, the powerful sight of the masses of pro-life marchers on Constitution Avenue still brings tears to my eyes.  Year after year we return, in defiance and in unity.  And I will be among the Marchers again this year, to renew the pro-life passion enkindled in me so long ago, and to remind the world that yes, with every step and every prayer, we are building a culture of life.

Maggie Datiles, J.D., Associate Fellow

 

Reflections of the Culture of Life and Roe v. Wade

At the root of Roe v Wade and the entire “Culture of Death” is the pernicious distinction between a “human being” or a “living member of the human species” and a “person.” Although Roe v Wade’s majority declared it unnecessary to “resolve the difficult question of when life begins,” it in effect decreed that human life, as personal and valuable, begins after birth.

This distinction is at the heart of the Culture of Death. Those who want to kill human embryos  for their stem cells live by it; they want these embryos’ stem cells precisely because they are human beings, indefensibly, it may seem to some,  of no value in themselves,  and their cells can be used to help “persons.”

This fallacious distinction in turn is a manifestation of a false dualism that separates the “person” from his own body. All human persons are bodily beings; they are their bodies; they are more than their bodies because their life-giving principle, their soul, is not material and their mind is not a bodily organ like the brain but an immaterial power. But they are bodies. With others I have defended this truth for almost 40 years, a few years before Roe v Wade. And I think ordinary people know this. If your stomach aches you ache, not simply your stomach.
 

How can a living human individual not be a human person? I am confident that most of our fellow citizens know this and that as a result the drive to restore legal protection to unborn human persons will lead to the overthrow of Roe v Wade. Its days are numbered.

William E. May, Ph.D., Senior Fellow

(c) 2011 Culture of Life Foundation. Reproduction granted with attribution required.

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