This month marks forty years since the infamous Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade legalized abortion-on-demand in the United States. The status of the pro-life movement is something of a mixed bag, with large demonstrations and political victories amid ever-increasing government support for abortion providers.
The scourge of abortion is an American institution, with over three thousand children slaughtered each and every day. In the forty years since the Supreme Court handed down Roe vs. Wade, politicians and pro-life groups have accomplished little to stop the bloodshed. And with the rising popularity of abortion-causing contraceptive methods like the Morning After Pill, it’s clear that any estimates of the abortion toll since 1973 are greatly understated.
The years of bloodshed cannot be ignored by those who grieve its impact. Many events are taking place across the nation to remember the ruling that has resulted in the deaths of countless millions of unborn children. Record-breaking crowds are expected to take part in the annual “March for Life” in Washington, DC, perhaps outnumbering attendees for President Obama’s second inauguration.
Additionally, a coalition of pro-life groups have launched the “Remembering Roe” campaign, which inspired pro-life citizens to join together in a special day of prayer and reflection about abortion. The campaign website features historical information about Roe v. Wade and a forum for prayers for an end to abortion.
These pro-life demonstrations follow one of the most productive years of state-based pro-life legislation. 2012 saw state legislatures across the United States pass the second-highest number of pro-life laws since the Roe v. Wade decision was handed down in 1973.
A new report from Planned Parenthood’s research arm, the Guttmacher Institute, shows that 43 laws protecting unborn children and their mothers were passed in 19 states in 2012. That number is only surpassed by the efforts of pro-lifers in 2011, when a record-setting 92 pro-life provisions were enacted. The report did not find a single instance of a state provision passed in 2012 that liberalized abortion laws.
New pro-life laws are related to matters like informed consent, regulation of abortion clinics, late-term abortions, insurance coverage, requiring abortionists to comply with hospital-level standards, etc. These kinds of restrictions have had an effect, even prior to 2012. The Wall Street Journal cites a report by Operation Rescue claiming the number of abortion clinics nationwide fell from 2,200 in 1991 to 678 in 2011.
The news is not all good, however, since taxpayers are being fleeced to reward abortion providers with millions of dollars. Last year, Planned Parenthood reported receiving a record $542 million in taxpayer money, marking a steady increase in government funding despite pro-life efforts at the state and federal levels to cut off that stream. The funding figures showed roughly 45% of Planned Parenthood’s budget now comes from taxpayers.
Pro-life groups have seized on that report to renew their calls for Congress to defund Planned Parenthood. Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List said, “Americans are sick and tired of underwriting the nation’s largest abortion business.” Tennessee Representative Diane Black said the report “underscores the pressing need to cut off all federal funding for Planned Parenthood.”
Taxpayer funding was recently extended to members of the armed forces in December, when Congress passed a Democrat-sponsored provision to allow women in the military to use their health insurance to pay for abortion in cases of rape or incest. Previously, the Department of Defense would pay only for abortion only when the mother’s life was at stake. The expanded abortion coverage was included as part of an overall defense budget bill and was supported by pro-abortion politicians.
But make no mistake: Those politicians who spend their careers fighting to ensure that women have the ability to murder their unborn children are just as responsible for the bloodguilt of America’s abortion holocaust as those evil men and women who actually perform abortions.
The Bible makes clear in Romans 13 that governments are charged with the purposes of promoting good and restricting evil. Evil is hardly personified more clearly than in the malevolent practice of abortion. A government that continues to fund and support this barbaric act will surely incur the righteous wrath of a holy God. The US government must fulfill its God-given duty to restrict murder, an evil that grieves and angers God. Pray for the United States and those in leadership. Beg God to begin a work of repentance in their hearts and minds and cause them to turn away from enabling this great evil.
As Americans, we have the unique ability to act on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves. As Christians, this opportunity is an obligation. In 2013, let’s renew our commitment to tirelessly work to protect the unborn. May God guide our steps as we do.