Is there hope for the pro-life movement?
Editor’s Note: Isaac Longworth is the first-place winner of the 2011/12 Fr. Ted Essay Contest, co-sponsored by Niagara Right to Life and The Interim-. He attends St. Mary’s High School in Woodstock, Ont. The Interim will publish the second and third place winners in the April edition of the paper.
Abortion-on-demand has been permitted in this country of ours for twenty four years, after the infamous R. v. Morgentaler case. Since then, Right to Life groups have been championing the rights of the unborn. However, despite their valiant efforts, the abortion laws (or lack thereof) still stand. Even after years of trying, it seems as if nothing has been accomplished. Every day, more than 300 abortions are committed in Canada alone. These heart-rending numbers can give us cause to despair, and may make us give up hope that there will ever be an end to abortion. However, I will show you four reasons why we should not despair in this fight. It is possible, yes even probable, that we will see the horrific scourge of abortion finally leave our great country because there is an increased awareness of the issue, more support from the public, advances in science, and the fact that God is on our side. Because of these four reasons, I am hopeful that I will see an end to abortion within my lifetime.
First of all, the abortion issue is becoming more and more heard about. Because of the promulgation of the subject of abortion by Right to Life groups, abortion has become a hot topic that is talked about in schools, workplaces, churches, and homes all over the country. Pro-abortion groups try to keep discussion to a bare minimum, because they know that if the truth about abortion is revealed, they will lose many of their supporters. This is why dialogue about the issue is crucial to the undoing of abortion, because the more people learn about abortion, the more they learn to hate it. Thus, I believe, if the wave of discussion about abortion continues, we will see a turning of the tide.
The second reason why there is still hope is that there is more support from the public. The fact that there is growing support for the pro-life movement is closely tied to my last point. Gradually, I believe that more and more people are aligning themselves with the pro-life side, and this is evident from the National March for Life in Ottawa. I have attended the March for the past four years, and every year, rain or shine, a massive crowd shows up to defend life. Every year the March increases by several thousand new people. Even at my own high school, where I help lead a Pro-Life Club, I can see the growing support. Last year, the group numbered at only six people. This year, 40 people signed up to come to the meetings. It is the biggest turnout we have ever had. The problem in Canada is not that there are not enough people that are pro-life, but rather, that those who profess to be pro-life don’t do anything to help. They believe abortion is wrong, but are unsure, too afraid, or too lazy to help. If enough of these nominal “pro-lifers” get involved in the issue, abortion will come to a swift end. I hope that this will soon come to pass. Even though the pro-abortion side still remains strong, the pro-life forces grows more and more each year, and this should make us optimistic.
Thirdly, science itself is on our side. We have endless materials on hand like ultrasounds, models of unborn children, and genetic proof that a new human life is present at conception. Using ultrasounds, pro-life advocates can show the public how human the unborn baby appears. People can hear with their own ears the tiny baby’s heartbeat. This type of concrete evidence can greatly impact a pregnant woman’s decision on abortion, especially if she can see for herself the tiny life growing inside of her womb. This is the reason why almost every abortion chamber refuses to show ultrasounds to the women they counsel, because almost all of them change their mind when they realize that it’s a baby, not a bunch of cells.
Also, science has shown that conception is the start of human life. How do they know this? Every human cell has 46 chromosomes, except the sperm and egg cells which each have 23. When the sperm and egg meet at conception, they create a new cell with 46 chromosomes. This new cell requires nothing but nutrients to grow into a fully formed human person. It has its own genetic code, blood type, and gender, and thus is considered a new human being. Science itself proves the pro-life stand. When more people are educated about this, they will see the validity of the pro-life opinion, and work together against abortion.
Finally, there is hope for the Canadian pro-life movement because we have God on our side. While our world may not view this as significant, we know that God is the foundation of our movement. Every person who stands for a good cause has reason to hope. As humans, it is part of our nature to hold on to hope, even when it seems like the only option is to despair. Sometimes, when I see the pro-abortion forces and all of the power they wield through the media, popular culture, money, and fear, I feel discouraged. Then, I remind myself what I am fighting for. I remind myself of the thousands of children’s lives that are at stake when they are in their most vulnerable position. I remember that every child’s life we save is a huge victory in and of itself, and this gives me hope.
If you believe in God, as I do, you can be sure that He is watching over this movement, and that He mourns over every one of his children that dies at the knives of the abortionist. I believe that He will give us a victory over the evil of abortion, but we must meet Him half way. We must continue to fight, both abortion and the despair in our own hearts. I will never give up until abortion is banished from the world, and every child can grow in peace without fear of losing his or her life. And when we die, we will go to God who will tell us “You fought the good fight. Welcome home, good and faithful servant.”