I didn’t know what to expect at the historic 50th annual March for Life. As someone who has regularly joined the throngs of people who have marched each year in Washington since the Supreme Court invented a constitutional right to abortion in 1973, I feared the crowds and enthusiasm might fizzle in a post-Roe world. But my fears were entirely unfounded.
The usual young and joyful crowds were there in force, blanketing the Mall, streaming toward the Capitol like a human river. One recurrent theme in the speeches and banners that animated the occasion was highlighting the vital work of pro-life pregnancy care centers — the compassionate outreach arm of the pro-life movement.
Shortly after the May 2022 Supreme Court leak in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, an angry pro-abortion fringe group turned its sights on these centers. These charitable organizations, which provide support and tangible assistance to pregnant women who want to give birth, have been firebombed and vandalized after publication of a pro-abortion manifesto declaring “open season” on them.
I am a radiologist and medical director of facilities for the Archdiocese of Miami, where we do this charitable work. As a volunteer, I also read our facilities’ fetal ultrasounds. Last May, one of our pregnancy care centers was vandalized with spray-painted threats of violence. We were all scared, and even more so when we found out that ours was just one of more than 79 documented recent threats and attacks targeting centers like ours.
House Democrats recently had a chance to condemn this political violence but, almost to a person, they refused. Nor did we hear a peep from President Biden. Volunteers like me and the good-hearted employees who work at the nation’s pregnancy resource centers today labor with the added burden of a target on our backs. We are (mostly) women and men who know that it is hard to bring a baby into this world when the economic and social chips are stacked against you. Our work is to provide material and emotional assistance for women and couples who choose to welcome their babies into the world.
Even worse than the failure to condemn violence against these pregnancy resource centers or to recognize the humanity of those working selflessly within their walls, though, is the ugly rhetoric of some Democrats who have accused our clinics of “torturing” women. Such irresponsible rhetoric only adds to the problem we face.
Customer satisfaction rates at our facilities are consistently above 95%, and it’s easy to understand why.
Our clients receive unqualified emotional support, material assistance, help with accessing obstetric care, job training, fetal ultrasounds and more. All free. If women decide to have an abortion, they can walk across the street to Planned Parenthood, where they will pay for a painful and dangerous surgical or chemical abortion instead.
A recent Marist poll asked Americans of all stripes how they felt about pregnancy resource centers. Ninety-one percent support them. This makes sense, given that Americans are generous, compassionate and sensible. They know babies require significant resources and that too often fathers are missing. They also know that lots of expectant mothers — even if they are single, uninsured and poor, dream of giving birth and seeing their children’s faces. Americans want to see all people, including these marginalized mothers, follow their dreams.
Millions of women in our country right now long to have a child, or long to give birth to the one they carry. No woman, it’s safe to say, ever dreamed of having an abortion. The nation’s pregnancy care centers are where we help mothers and couples realize their dreams.
The uplifting spirit of these centers and the pro-life movement animated the 50th annual March for Life, and it will animate similar marches in state capitals going forward. Their work has never been so important. In spite of violence and threats, in spite of Democrats’ consenting silence, pregnancy resource centers across the nation will keep opening their doors and welcoming women and couples who come to us for help in making their dreams come true.
• Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie is a senior fellow with The Catholic Association.
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