21 May 2019 March for Life 2019: Pro-life action that lasts all year
The following is an adaptation of the speech given at the March for Life in Victoria, BC and Toronto, ON on May 9, 2019. The message of the speech was to maintain pro-life action throughout the year, caring both deeply and loudly.
It’s so special to spend a day surrounded by pro-life Canadians, all taking the time to say that pre-born children matter and need legal protection. Thank you to every one of you who came out today!
While I’m so thankful that every one of you is here, I especially want to encourage you as you GO from here shortly, back to your homes, your jobs, your everyday life. Friends, 300 babies are dying today. The same number will also die tomorrow.
Abortion has been legal in Canada for 50 years, at the cost of literally millions of babies.
Marching today is not enough. Caring deeply is not enough. There is so much more to be done.
We have a country where most politicians view pre-born children as a political liability. Most politicians think talking about abortion will make them lose their job, or at least lose opportunities they might have had for promotion. Why do they think that?
Because even though you and I care deeply, we sometimes also care quietly.
They don’t hear us! They don’t hear us crying out for pre-born children, they don’t see us voting for life above and beyond any other issue.
Maybe they see us marching and think yes, those people care about something! But then we go home and, if they don’t hear from us again, they forget about us. Worse, they forget about the lives of those we want to speak for. They forget about those who cannot speak for themselves.
Being here today is not enough if we want our leaders to believe we stand behind them when they speak out against abortion. We need to stand behind them when the media, and their own colleagues, try to destroy them for speaking out against abortion. This means sending a message or calling them up to say thank you for speaking up, and calling them out when they DON’T speak up. Our leaders represent us – but how can they do that well if they don’t know us, and know what matters to us?
Progress for pre-born children is not made at a march like this. This is a beautiful opportunity to come together and make a stand, but even more importantly, let it be an opportunity to be encouraged and inspired by all the people around us to act more. Look around you. All of these people care about pre-born children. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. When you call your MP or MLA, or write to your local paper, or support your local pregnancy care center, you should be able to count on these people around you to have your back. Look at your neighbour. Smile at them, shake hands with them, tell them – I’ve got your back. You are not alone!
Then do the same for others who aren’t here. If you see a young pregnant woman at the grocery store, tell her you’re cheering for her, that you believe in her. If you have a local pregnancy care center near you, make sure they have enough formula and diapers when struggling moms, or women struggling with whether they can be moms, come to them for help.
If you have children, talk to them about abortion. Tell them to come to you first when they face a crisis, and tell them they will be met with love, grace and support. Talk to your sons about respect, and responsibility, and doing hard things. Talk to your daughters about respect, responsibility, and doing hard things. Young people here today, respect each other, take responsibility for your actions, and don’t be afraid to do hard things. Hold each other accountable in love, build each other up, and choose the right things over the easy things.
And then we need to go beyond the personal to the political. We need to get political if we want to see change that impacts all of Canada, change that reaches into the life of every pre-born child, and every mother who is unsure about her ability or willingness to parent. We’re here outside the beautiful provincial legislature – but this can’t be the closest we get to political engagement.
Political change requires a long view. It’s not immediate change. Step by step, slow and steady, persistent action. Too many politicians view pre-born children as a political liability. We want them to know that the opposite is going to be true: continuing to ignore the human rights of the vulnerable will be a political liability. We, the voters, are the ones who can make that happen. Being here today shows we are working to make that happen!
Personal, local action is necessary to love women and their children, both during pregnancy and into parenting. And political action is also necessary, to drive change and enact laws that will have far-reaching consequences for all women seeking an abortion.
Approximately 100,000 babies are aborted every year in Canada. This is a brutal reality that will not change without both personal and political action. Not just today, but every day, be part of the growth and energy of the pro-life movement, both personally and politically.
Together, we are stronger. That’s why we’re all here today. We can see around us a crowd of people who believe in human rights for ALL human beings, from conception to natural death. Like you, like me, they are willing to be here, because they believe in it that much. There is much being done, and still much to do. Thank you for being here today. Please show up with the same passion wherever you find yourself tomorrow, and every other day this year. Let’s all stand together and encourage each other to care both deeply and loudly, personally and politically, all year long.