Students for Life Hold DC Rally to Mark Dobbs Anniversary
Former Vice President Mike Pence was among the prominent speakers to address the event.
Students for Life of America saluted the first anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision as “National Celebrate Life Day” with a rally at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington June 24. The Dobbs decision, which overturned Roe v. Wade, allows states to regulate abortion.
Former Vice President Mike Pence was among the prominent speakers to address the predominantly youthful rally. Indicating he would make protection of the unborn central to his declared presidential campaign, Pence stressed that pro-life work had not ended with the Dobbs ruling. Instead, quoting Lincoln’s second inaugural address chiseled into the Memorial’s north wall, Pence urged the young people to “strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds,” making clear that the legal status of abortion and the trauma wrought by abortion in concrete Americans’ lives both required ongoing action.
Lynn Fitch, the Mississippi Attorney General who brought the Dobbs case to the Supreme Court, also reminded the crowd that pro-life work must go on. The Magnolia State’s first female Attorney General stressed it was imperative to create social protections to promote life alongside legal protections for the unborn.
Dr. Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr., represented Alveda King Ministries. Numerous speakers invoked parallels between the rally and King’s 1963 civil rights rally at the Memorial, including the need to make abortion an unthinkable ‘solution” so that America can be truly “free at last.”
Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America urged listeners to press for federal passage of the “Standing with Moms Act,” bills (HR 517, S 76) introduced by Florida Senator Marco Rubio and South Carolina Representative Nancy Mace. The bills would create a federal clearinghouse of one-stop information about pro-life resources available to women seeking not to abort their child. Even “pro-choice” legislators should support legislation making mothers aware of their pro-life choices.
Ryan Bomberger of the Radiance Foundation made the abortion debate personal: he is a child conceived by rape, whose mother bore and surrendered him for adoption. He, in turn, is a father of four, two of whom he adopted, and bears witness to the purposefulness of every life. He asks: should I be dead?
The roster of speakers also included Kristan Hawkins, President of Students for Life of America and Students for Life Action; Lila Rose of Live Action; Shawn Carney, President of 40 Days for Life; Marjorie B. Dannenfelser of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America; Michael Kenney of the Pro-Life Partners Association; Michael Acquilano of Sidewalk Advocates for Life; and Dr. Chad Pecknold of The Catholic University of America.
Apostle Arnold Culbreath, a black pastor and Director of Ministry Engagement at the Frederick Douglass Leadership Institute in Maryland, delivered the benediction.