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The March for Life vs. the Women’s March: Which will stand the test of time?

Written By | Jan 26, 2018
March for Life

A young girl holds up a pro-life sign at the March for Life in Washinton, D.C.| Author Miss Monica Elizabeth –,_Washington,_D.C._(2013).JPG

LOS ANGELES, January 26, 2018: On January 19, the annual March for Life took place on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.  This event has taken place for 45 years following the Supreme Court’s January 22, 1973, Roe v. Wade decision making abortion on demand legal in all 50 United States. This demonstration is the longest-running civil rights event in the nation.

It continues to serve not only as a visible, peaceful protest, but stirs activism and education, while involving ways to defeat abortion in America and protect the lives of the pre-born.

2018 March for Life was historic.

The 2018 event marked the first time a sitting President has chosen to address the marchers live. President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence spoke via a White House satellite relay in the Rose Garden. Previous pro-life presidents who supported this movement (Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush) customarily sent a prerecorded message that was projected at the event.

The March for Life website boasted of a massive crowd: 100,000 strong in Washington, D.C., augmented with satellite and additional March for Life events held in cities across the country, from Los Angeles to Port St. Lucie, Florida. The Chicago March for Life had over 6,000 in attendance.

Media coverage of March for Life vs. the Women’s March

Aside from some conservative sites and publications dedicated to the pro-life cause, plus a handful of major news outlets (U.S. News and World Report, ABC World News), the 2018 Pro-Life event received typically minimal press coverage.

The majority of media outlets appeared singularly focused on the January 20 Women’s March held on the Washington Mall, in cities across the United States, and in international cities like Toronto and London.

The law of abortion: Another law school for you

The first Women’s March was held in 2017

The first Women’s March was primarily in protest of the January 20 Inauguration of President Donald Trump. It reflected the power of social media activism, fueled by hatred and disdain for an election result with which certain factions did not agree and wanted to change.

But one year later, despite the hue, cry, and complaints issued by porn stars, Hollywood has-beens, and the increasingly questionable Russia investigation, Donald J. Trump is still our President. Trump doesn’t appear to be going anywhere until and unless he is voted out in three years.

If he is voted out in three years.

While the Trump administration has suffered major stumbles and self-inflicted wounds,  most notably the failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and the revolving door of staff appointments and firings, the president has accomplished some major wins as well.

These include the sweeping GOP tax reform legislation, and his recent surprising victory over the Democrats, which he won by staring down Senator Chuck Schumer. The Democrats’ maneuver to shut down the Federal government over former President Obama’s unconstitutional DACA dictate failed.

Two wins may seem like small potatoes. But the scope of these wins has been substantial and far-reaching.

The President is President to all

Exhibiting further proof that he is indeed the President of the United States and that he possesses a wicked sense of humor as well, President Trump offered this tweet on the day of the Women’s March:

Love him or hate him, Trump understands how to use social media to score points. He garnered 54,000 retweets and over 200,000 likes for his clever Women’s March tweet.

The March for Life and other pro-life organizations to continue to rally and fight.

Roe v. Wade and abortion on demand are still the law of the land. Tragically, abortion has claimed the lives of over 60 million Americans over the past 45 years.

In his article, “7 Lies Of The ‘Women’s March’, And 1 Thing They Got Right – The most frivolous protest in the history of the world“, Michael J. Knowles of the Daily Wire put it into this perspective: 60 million lives roughly equals the combined populations of 28 states.

That’s a mind-boggling statistic.

Among those 60 million Americans, how many of them were women? The same country that decries China and its restrictive one-child policy, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of females aborted or born and abandoned, somehow justifies 60 million American abortions as a win for women’s rights. It makes no sense.

Blacks protest police brutality while supporting abortions that kill black babies

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), African-Americans account for 35 percent of that number. The Congressional Black Caucus and activists like Black Lives Matter fulminate about alleged genocide caused by “police brutality.”

Yet they continue to support organizations like Planned Parenthood that allow the minority-focused genocide of abortion to continue.

Fortunately, many Black pastors and community leaders are finally raising their voice to stem the tide. Their number notably includes Rev. Clenard Childress, founder of Black; and Rev. Alveda King, pastoral associate and director of African-American outreach for Priests for Life and Gospel of Life Ministries, and the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Does #BlackLivesMatter believe ALL black lives matter?

Marching for pre-born life has become identified as anti-woman.

The first Women’s March removed a secular group called New Wave Feminists from its list of sponsors and tacitly ignored other pro-life organizations who felt just as aggrieved by the 2016 election results and wanted to show solidarity. Perusing their website, that has not changed. However, Planned Parenthood and NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League), are prominent.

Big pockets buy big media, and they did.

For what, then, are the organizers of The Women’s March fighting, and why does it continue to gain such major press attention, free and paid? A cursory internet search renders glowing articles from Business Insider, People Magazine, The Washington Post, Time, CNN Politics, Mother Jones, and Bustle. Elle Magazine featured, “The Most Adorably Woke Kids at the Women’s March: THE FUTURE, everyone.”

Why no similar feature on adorably pro-life children at the March for Life?

The Women’s March is about politics, not women

The stated mission of The Women’s March preaches equality, diversity, harnessing the political power and creating “transformative social change.”

But the majority of the marchers’ signs, speeches, and discussion were centered around President Donald Trump.

A-List celebrities like Olivia Wilde, Scarlett Johansen, and Viola Davis gave speeches, along with activists and politicians, all glancingly or directly mentioned Donald Trump and their hatred of him and his policies.

Where I live in Los Angeles, Mayor Eric Garcetti postured and preened at The Women’s March. The majority of his speech was how Los Angeles has done a fine job of resisting President Donald Trump and his administration’s push to rid the nation of sanctuary cities and criminal illegals.

Garcetti cautioned, “We will be judged not by what we say today, but what we do tomorrow.” and referred to President Trump as a “so-called leader.”  While Garcetti sells out the hard-working people of Los Angeles for overpriced condominium buildings and social justice warrior optics he promises fixes to roads and help for homeless, while failing to deliver either.

Yet, Mayor Garcetti received cheers and applause from thousands of women, when his policies, which make housing astronomical and the streets of Los Angeles a danger, are decidedly anti-woman.

Despite the supposed diversity of the causes of The Women’s March, very few (if any) signs reflected any need to talk about the issues of poverty and homelessness, and how they affect women.

The majority of ink and paper was spent on slanderous or pejorative statements against the President.

March for Life

Photo credit: Joyce A. Britton. Used with permission.

People march because of a promise of social change.

L.A. Women’s March participant Joyce Britton believes,

“every voice and life represented out there on the streets of downtown L.A. matters. But the best way for us to truly inspire change is at the polls. If we don’t get out and represent at the polls, then none of this was worth it. It’s one thing to shout and carry signs, but we need to go vote and not get complacent like I had become before I decided to go and march.”

Waking people from their political complacency may be one of the tangible results of organizing these marches. The Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University calculates that 602,480 women are running in 2018 state and local elections. The #MeToo movement, while primarily focused on the Entertainment industry, has reached its arms into the political world too.  Congress is holding unprecedented sexual harassment hearings, and everyone from state officials and 9th Circuit judges, to Senator Al Franken, and Congressman John Conyers have become part of the fallout.

Women have been empowered to speak up about their harassment experiences to attentive and listening ears.

So, if more “woke” people are a result of these marches, then some good has been accomplished.

What if?

The majority of the activism and women running for office is Democrat and progressive. What happens if Democrats do not gain control of the House? What happens if Donald J. Trump is, clutch the pearls, re-elected for a second term?

What will happen to their activism and fire if those things occur? Will they continue to cry for change, or simply throw a temper tantrum?

The March for Life is only stronger after 45 years, and its impact socially and politically has been tangible.

In 2013, the number of abortions annually fell below 1 million for the first time in 40 years, and by all accounts continues to slowly drop. More states are limiting access to abortion on demand while putting laws into place to protect the rights of the pre-born.

Calling out the Women’s March hypocrisy

Like the fast-moving activism of Occupy Wall Street and Black Lives Matter, after two years The Women’s March is showing signs of fracture. Only women’s agendas that fit the paradigm are welcome.  At The Women’s March, pro-life feminists were shown the door, as were transgender women.

Toronto, Canada had a huge Women’s March, but Tarek Fatah outlined the hypocrisy of the selective feminism shown by the organizers. He wrote in the Toronto Sun:

“Long before the march in DC, Toronto, Los Angeles and other cities, women in Iran had revolted in a courageous manner to stand up to the ayatollahs and many ripped off their oppressive hijabs to challenge the dictatorship of the Islamic Regime.

“Further west, the amazing female soldiers of the Kurdish YPG were involved in resisting the invasion of Syria by the Islamofascist Turkish Armed Forces.

“One would have hoped that the Women’s March would utter some words of solidarity with the brave women of Iran and the Kurds, but that was not to happen. Not one word was said. Had the organizers claimed that the march was about women in the West, they would have had an argument that could be debated.

“This was not the case. At many rallies, international issues that matter to Islamists did come up in the speeches.”

With all this call for equality, diversity, and transformative social change, there is a strange selectivity to what The Women’s March considers equal and diverse.

The March for Life is a March for Women

A hallmark of any organization is how is it replicating its message to the next generation. The sheer numbers in all of the marches are impressive, and while both marches had a huge showing of Millennials and Generation Z, the March for Life distinguishes itself in the diverse array of youth.

The standard leftist thought is to peg any pro-lifer as religious, conservative, and Republican. The movement still has plenty of those, but a growing number of the younger converts are secular atheists, lesbian, gay, and even transgender. And guess what?

They are welcome to join the Pro-Life movement, along with the religious, the conservative, and the right-of-center.

Organizations like Secular Pro-Life, New Wave Feminist, Students for Life, and Rehumanize International are re-framing the abortion debate from a human rights standpoint, rather than a theological one, and making inroads into places where the typical pro-life activists would not.

In a Marie Claire article on this new wave of pro-life activism, Destiny Herndon-de la Rosa, the 34-year-old founder of New Wave Feminists was “disappointed” that the [Women’s] march didn’t stand behind their initial outreach, or stand behind what she feels is a truer sense of inclusion.

“Feminism should be about exchanging ideas,” she says, “not shutting down dialogue and excluding those you disagree with.”

The coming years will define which March has lasting effectiveness or becomes a standard bearer for women’s liberation. If Roe v. Wade is never overturned, hearts and minds are still being changed about the pre-born and their right to life. With all its lofty intentions about equality, diversity, and fairness, if The Women’s March continues to focus on a single person or political agenda, it may well crash and burn like Occupy Wall Street.

Time will tell.

Jennifer Oliver OConnell

Jennifer Oliver OConnell offers witty, insightful, and direct opinion, analysis and musings on local and national politics and popular culture, with occasional detours into reinvention, food, and Yoga. Jennifer also teaches Yoga, and coaches clients on careers and reinvention. You can keep up with what's in Jennifer's orbit through her As the Girl Turns website.