On January 27, hundreds of thousands of people converged on the nation’s capital to stand for the most valuable human right — the right to life. I was lucky enough to be one of those people.
The group I was travelling with arrived on Tuesday, and we did some sightseeing throughout the week. Washington Monument. Check. Lincoln Memorial. Check. Arlington National Cemetery, Vietnam War Memorial, World War II Memorial. Check, check, check.
It didn’t take me long to realize that this was much more than a trip to knock a few items off my very short bucket-list. The following day, at noon, our group went to a Planned Parenthood facility to pray. The gravity of the week hit me as I stepped off the bus and saw the “clinic.” The building was grey with modern architecture, located in the middle of a neighborhood, quite unironically, right next to a preschool being dismissed for the day. With the knowledge of what goes on behind those dark grey walls right next to the vibrant life of young children, I could not help but avert my eyes and stare into the rich, clear blue sky and feel the crisp, January air. I finally scrounged up enough courage to look at the intimidating building.
The glass was tinted just enough so I couldn’t see inside, not that I wanted to. It was as though I was looking at the face of Satan himself. We began our prayer. A short time later, a young woman, no more than 14, and her mother walked out of the clinic, escorted by a nurse who would have fit in better at a morgue. The girl carried a vomit bag, and while the mother seemed fine, this poor girl’s face told a much more sinister story. You could see the fear, humiliation, despair, and depression eating away at her heart. The tears immediately started to fall at the spectacle, mostly because I knew that there was nothing I could do. I knew, at that moment, that she had a hard road ahead, a road of regret, judgement, and depression. There was nothing I could do to change her future. There was nothing I could have done to save her from the procedure itself. This poor soul had lost her innocence at such a young age, and in such a gruesome, brutal, dehumanizing way. That experience ate away at my thoughts for next 48 hours.
I was blown away by the cogent case the Vice President made on Friday. After what we had experienced that week, it was the perfect tone setter for the march.
We began our two-mile walk at 1:00, and, as a group, we were not only marching for babies exterminated by abortion, but also for families, mothers, daughters, even fathers that have been hurt by this grave crime against humanity. My mind flashed back to the girl walking out of the Planned Parenthood two days before.
Not only do we march to save the babies, but also to alleviate the pain endured by so many every single day. The solution cannot be a court decision or an executive order. It must be a change of heart. And that only comes through prayer and sacrifice. With those two things, every American can stand in solidarity for the right to life.