Scott Tibbs

Reflecting on fifty years since Roe v. Wade

By Scott Tibbs, February 1, 2023

When I walked onto the courthouse lawn for the Rally for Life, I was encouraged like I had never been encouraged before. Dobbs v. Jackson had been released seven months earlier, finally overturning Roe v. Wade. The crowd was more hopeful than they had been since I started attending these things over two decades ago.

But there is more work to be done. Yes, states can finally protect unborn babies without interference from the federal judiciary, which had fabricated a "right" to abortion that never existed prior to January 1973. But even states with a "pro-life" legislature have passed laws with holes that allow surgical abortions in the early weeks of pregnancy. There is nothing to stop women from crossing into another state to have an abortion, and chemical abortion will continue as baby-killing drugs can be transported across state lines.

So will the March for Life in Washington D.C. continue? There is no reason why it should not. Will the Rally for Life in downtown Bloomington continue? As long as I have anything to say about it, that will continue every January. As long as babies are dying from chemical and surgical abortions, the anti-abortion movement will continue trying to protect them. The focus will shift to the state level, and there is hope for a federal ban - not right now, but at some point in the future. We have to continue to protect the Supreme Court so that Dobbs does not get overturned.

Many pro-life people have spent decades seeing the demise of Roe as the end goal, but in reality is is only the beginning. Abortion has become embedded in our culture. Even the abortion ban that past the Indiana state legislature last summer has not yet been implemented. Chemical abortions, which were growing and are largely not tracked, will continue. Local governments will work to preserve "reproductive health care," as Bloomington did last fall by appropriating over one hundred thousand dollars to help women travel to other states to get abortions.

This will not be without opposition. Even Donald Trump, who appointed three of the five justices that overturned Roe, blamed his own pro-life supporters for Republicans' weak performance in the 2022 midterm elections. Without the slightest hint of self-awareness, Trump then whined that Evangelical Christians were "disloyal." Loyalty works both ways. While the pro-life movement will always be grateful for what Trump did, he cannot expect to take the Establishment Republican narrative and then not face push back from the voters he is criticizing.

In the quarter century that I have been active in the anti-abortion movement, I have never been more encouraged than I am right now. But now is not the time to let up. Now is the time to keep pushing, at all levels of government, to protect innocent lives from the abortion industry. We must not squander this gift given to us by God, and we must keep fighting for the unborn.

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