Still on the fence about whether or not you’ll be going to the March for Life in the nation’s capitol this coming Friday? Well, here are 10 quick reasons to hop off that fence and start planning your trip.
1. Everybody’s doing it.
I know. Your mother explicitly told you that is not a reason for doing something. But she was talking about imitating the bad kids, not the good kids. And this week, all the good kids are heading to DC for the March for Life. Or, many of the good kids are. Organizers of the March say they’re expecting a record turnout this year, and given the current political climate (i.e. the re-election of the most pro-abortion president in our history, the ongoing threat to religious liberty from the HHS Mandate, the mounting attacks on marriage, etc.), those expectations seem reasonable. You don’t want to miss out on all the fun, do you?
2. The young ones.
Not the unborn young ones. The other young ones. The thousands upon thousands of children, tweens, and teens that throng Constitution Avenue every year bedecked in pro-life sweatshirts, brightly colored scarves, and matching hats. Those kids are the future of the pro-life movement, and their numbers and energy strike mortal fear into the hearts of the abortion supporters who catch a glimpse of them. On us though, they have just the opposite effect. They help us to hope.
3. The pro-abortion counter-protestors.
Sure, there are only about 12 of them. But trying to spot one in the midst of a pro-life sea is a great way to keep the kids (or yourself) occupied as you hoof it to the Supreme Court. Think of it as a real life version of “Where’s Waldo.”
4. The Awesome Speeches by long-winded politicians on the Mall before the March.
Just kidding. Some portions of the day’s events you can skip
5. The hordes of men.
And women too. It’s true that the sheer number of people choking the city’s streets during the March for Life can be a bit overwhelming. Especially if you suffer from a twinge of claustrophobia. Nevertheless, it’s still heartening. At home, in our schools and offices, it’s easy to feel alone, like we’re the only ones who see how mad the world has grown. But we’re not. Far from it. There are millions upon millions of men and women who still see life as precious and sacred, and the March helps us remember that. It reminds us that we’re not alone. Not historically, and not culturally.
Never forget: Isolation feeds despair. Fellowship inspires courage.
6. The weather.
It’s going to be awesome…if you’re in to doing penance that is. As of today, the forecast is 37 and raining. Really, it doesn’t get any more miserable than that. And several hundred thousand people offering up their misery to God is bound to unleash tidal waves of grace for the unborn, their mothers, and all those pesky politicians. At least, that’s what I’m telling myself.
7. The after-party.
Once we’ve paid our respects to the Supreme Court, a good lot of us will drag our half-frozen, completely soaked bodies into some cozy pub or other to swap war stories and throw back a pint or two with old friends and like-minded pro-lifers from all around the country. Me and mine will be at The Dubliner, but wherever you go, there’s guaranteed conversation, laughter, and beer. Who can ask for more?
8. 40 years.
Remember, this is no ordinary March for Life. It’s the March that will mark 40 years of legalized abortion in the U.S. That’s a biblical generation of bloodshed and broken hearts. If this were a wedding anniversary, it would be the ruby anniversary. Ruby red. Blood red. Tragically fitting. And reason enough to take a personal day on Friday.
9. The women.
More than 30 million women in America have had abortions since 1972. More than a million will have an abortion this year. In a way, those women are the abortion industry’s greatest victims. They were sold a lie that they have to live with forever. They lost something that can never be replaced. And for that, they hurt—some more acutely than others, some more knowingly than others, but they hurt nonetheless. Those women need our love. They need our prayers. They need our support. And the more of us that gather in DC on Friday, the louder and clearer our message of hope and healing, of love and life, will be.
10. The babies.
Ultimately, they’re why we do it. They’re the only reason we need. We march for them—all 55 million of the little ones we never had the chance to know, all 55 million of the men and women we never had the chance to love. When we march—in the cold, in the rain, in the crowds, laughing and praying and offering it all up as we go—we remember them. We honor them. We love them. And we hope against hope, that this March will be the last.
See you there?
Emily Stimpson is a Contributing Editor to “Our Sunday Visitor” and the author of “The Catholic Girl’s Survival Guide for the Single Years.” Her next book, “Everyday Theology of the Body: Musings on the Mysteries and Manners of the Sacramental Worldview,” is due out later in 2013 from Emmaus Road Press,