When I was in middle school, I had the opportunity to go to Washington D.C. in the spring. From the break of dawn until well past midnight, for 5 days we toured the capital. In April it is gorgeous with tulips and cherry blossoms and pink sunsets.
In preparation for the trip, I asked my cousin Larry, a Vietnam veteran, about any names to find on The Wall. That monument of polished granite loomed in my mind. It was the monument of our generation in that we saw it on the news, read books about it, learned about it in school. I was nervous, shaky and sweaty the morning we visited the Wall. The slip of paper with Larry’s friend’s name became damp and curled in my hand as we searched through the directory. With purpose I rubbed until the name showed through. I traced the groves with my fingers and saw my reflection. We paced down the length of the monument and I found someone with my own last name, unknown to me but loved by someone, engraved high above my head.
The experience was lasting.
Last week, I heard that there have been over 55 MILLION abortions performed in this country since the Roe v. Wade decision. The speaker admitted that he could not picture such a number.
“What I can wrap my head around is an image. ” he said. “If there was a memorial for all of those unborn, if it was just like the Vietnam War Memorial on the National Mall, if it began there, it would stretch to Baltimore and back, 10 miles away.”
I stopped folding the laundry and let it soak in.
Today marks the 40th anniversary of the legalization of abortion.
I have been chasing the number 55 million around in my mind and I waiver. It is overwhelming. It is painful. It is enraging. If it weren’t so dang ridiculous it would be unbelievable.
55 million children, people, killed while we have stood by.
Politics and religion aside, here’s the thing: PEOPLE have a right to LIVE. Life begins at conception when the father ceases to be the father and the mother ceases to be the mother as separates and something, SOMEONE, comes into being. That life has a RIGHT to survive. You know what is NOT a right? SEX. Yes, abortion is an abomination and should be stopped but the cause ? That’s as easy as keeping a belt buckled. Are there tragic circumstances, horrific even, that lead to a new life? Yes. Yes there are but there is no need to make a mother a victim twice.
My life, my crazy, wild life with all the laundry and dishes and ceaseless noise, well, it says where I stand. It is a call, most certainly, this life that I live, and that means it’s not for everyone. But everyone, from the moment they begin, have a call and I think they should get the chance to live it.