Marching for life, our future
I wonder why when hundreds of thousands of women show up in Washington to demonstrate for what one Wall Street Journal columnist called "everything under the progressive sun," the press goes bonkers with coverage.
Yet, when similar numbers of pro-lifers reportedly show up for the March for Life, as they have been doing every January since the Roe v. Wade decision in January 1973, and as they will do again this week, they barely get a nod from the media.
Of course, anti-abortion activists are far less flamboyant. They don’t bring in rock stars like Madonna to address the crowds in expletives.
They don’t carry signs with graphic pictures of women’s sexual organs. They are not vulgar.
Despite deep differences between the pro-life movement and President Obama, there was no denigration or character assassination of our former president, even though he ignored the March for Life, while becoming the first sitting president to address the annual meeting of Planned Parenthood.
Here’s the difference. Pro-life means respect for the sanctity of life, and respect for life means respect for everyone. Although we use the language of rights, it is really about responsibilities.
In contrast, the droves of marching, screaming women getting so much attention, are defined by one thing: me. So they can be vulgar, disgusting, outrageous and crass, because you and I don’t matter. It’s all about them and getting their hurt feelings out.
When it comes to abortion, there is no good news as long as the life of one child is pointlessly and cruelly extinguished.
But the abortion numbers are down. And this is good.
According to a new report from the Guttmacher Institute, abortions in the U.S. in 2014 totaled 926,200. The lowest since 1974.
The author of the study speculated that the drop might be explained by more sophisticated and widespread use of birth control measures and possibly by tighter abortion laws in many states.
Abortion is down, but births are not up.
So perhaps some of this also can be associated with broader acceptance of sexual practices that in previous times were viewed as deviant.
The screaming ladies on the mall in Washington may be happy about the "me" culture and want more of it, but for anyone looking to a future for America, it does not bode well.
The basis for a society is human beings, and the "me" culture produces fewer new people. Bringing children into the world and raising them takes three things that don’t work well with the "me" culture: work, sacrifice and love.
According to the latest report, which appeared several weeks ago from the Centers for Disease Control, the nation’s Total Fertility Rate, which is the average number of children produced by an adult American woman during her lifetime, is now 1.84. It is estimated that a Total Fertility rate of 2.08 is necessary to maintain a population where it is. So America is shrinking. America’s Total Fertility Rate in 1970, three years before Roe v. Wade legalized abortion, was 2.50.
This means also that America is aging. There will be fewer in the work force to pay taxes and keep our economy growing to support the retirement and health care requirements of an elderly population. There will be more Americans growing old alone, growing old without children and family to care for them, physically and emotionally.
Marching on Washington, screaming profanities to excite reporters looking for a story, may get a rise today.
But our country is slowly disappearing.
The Bible, something the "me" crowd enjoys denigrating, says that a man and woman should get married, that they should procreate and that they should "choose life."
The pro-life crowd is less flamboyant because it is steeped in a culture of respect, reverence for life and the wisdom of the ages.
It may get less press. But without it, we have no future.
Star Parker is an author and president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education.