Why Pro Life?
Back in 2010, I got to know some great men who were beginning to dedicate their lives to defending the unborn. I did a lot of thinking before I joined them, because I wasn’t convinced by most of the Right to Life rhetoric I’d been hearing.
Everyone knows that pro-life supporters and abortion advocates stopped listening to each other decades ago. I felt that it was time to dig in and see if there was any way to move the debate forward. My friends argued that life is God’s gift to the person conceived, a gift no one else has the right to take away. That’s now considered a matter of faith, not certainty. The idea of God-given rights is no longer the “self evident” truth Thomas Jefferson once claimed. I wanted to find an idea of justice all Americans could share.
I dedicated a year to that search. It wasn’t an armchair affair. I hit the streets of D.C., I roamed, I raved — not knowing I was looking for love. I would really like to share the story with you. Please check out A Just Man Is Hard to Find. It’s profound, but readable. It’s just me talking!
WHEN DOES LIFE BEGIN?
In A Just Man Is Hard to Find, I’m quick to admit I’m not a biology major, but I am keen on logic. Whether you consider an embryo “a person” shouldn’t confuse the issue. He tells his roommate:
Focusing the [abortion] debate on when life begins is silly, if you think about it. People can argue that question forever. Or whether an unborn fetus is a person. The obvious thing is that whether or not we choose to think the zygote, embryo, or fetus is a human being, it will become a human being for sure if left unmolested. We all come into the world the same way. Anyone knows without a doubt, that if we destroy a human embryo, we destroy an actual person in-the-making. Is it just to do that?
Is it ever just to abort another person’s life? If that’s the right question, the stakes are high –- for every unborn person and for any woman who doesn’t want to be pregnant. I hope Americans can figure out this matter of justice together.
MY FIRST RIGHT TO LIFE MARCH
January 2013, Washington, D.C. — A lot of young people see the value of the Right to Life movement. That was clear to me as I stood in line to receive Holy Communion at the National Shrine last night. The basilica dedicated to Holy Mary’s Immaculate Conception (her own conception, not her son’s) is right near Catholic University in Northeast D.C. I don’t know how many people attended the Mass for Life on the eve of today’s March for Life, but the huge Crypt Church, upper Church, and all the side chapels and open areas were packed with people. Most of the people were young. Groups of teenagers wearing sweatshirts identifying different schools all over the United States. It was heart-warming to be in the huge church full of conversation, song, and prayerful silence as the Liturgy played out. I felt, this is what living and breathing justice feels like! A huge family reunion.
I’ve asked a lot of people that question. So far, I like my mother’s answer best:
“Life is too good not to share.”
When I asked Father Jim why he worked so hard to defend life, he said, “I’d be crazy not to!” He thinks the abortion right has dealt our country a nearly fatal blow, and he doesn’t see things getting better in America until people start thinking clearly. “Right thinking leads to right living, and right living leads to peace on earth. Why would anyone think it just to end an innocent person’s life?” My mother and Jim are idealists, I suppose. They both remain hopeful that pro-life advocates’ reasoning and compassion will eventually wake people up to the injustice of abortion.
— Will Gray