By Jessica Resuta, guest blogger
For years through conversations with friends, social media posts and public statements, I have heard many pro-life people dismiss the importance of the March for Life in Washington D.C. with reasons such as that it’s only one day, or it’s all talk and no action.
As a young college undergraduate who has attended the March annually since 2008, I can state with confidence that an event like the March for Life is actually crucial to creating a culture that values life.
But why march? If one already speaks to peers about the value of life, assists young mothers, the elderly and the sick, why is this event necessary?
In response, the March goes hand in hand with the day to day actions we perform to protect the sanctity of life in our homes, communities and beyond. If it was truly what is often portrayed by the media as merely a loud protest or pep rally or a political statement, I would agree that it doesn’t exactly make a difference or serve a purpose. But the reality is that it is an event unlike any other and for a noble purpose.
The March is a unique cause and experience as hundreds of thousands of people from all ages, races, backgrounds, and religions join as one people united in an acknowledgement of the value and vulnerability of human life in all its stages. Furthermore, it is not only the opportunity to gather together to make a public witness, but it is a chance to be reassured that we are not alone in this mission and to show the world that they are not alone, that there really are people who care and love and act. In that crowd of hundreds of thousands are people who have lovingly and courageously been dedicated to respecting life. There are parents, teachers, religious and political leaders, children and college students, people who truly work and act to create an impact.
No, for me the March has never been just a good hurrah or a mere political statement, not that I don’t have a strong interest in politics, but it is that chance after another year of actively supporting the culture of life daily to unite with others and proclaim to the world that all human life is sacred and precious and that we are not afraid to declare so publicly. It is a day of life, peace, joy and prayer.
We need to take a public stand because the protection of life is such a fundamental issue, if not the fundamental issue in society. To put it simply, if there is no life there are no people, and with no people there is no society.
From abortion to euthanasia, these threats to human life in its most crucial stages are so urgent and have been going on for so long that it calls for a public proclamation from those who say they are pro-life; a proclamation that there are indeed hundreds of thousands who will love and protect life at all stages and work to see the end of any injustices.
The March for Life, this public proclamation, is a sign of hope that we have not given up on defending the innocent and defenseless, but also a sign that we will not weaken our stance. Even while facing opposition or unfavorable laws or leaders, we will not desert those who depend on us whether it be the unborn, the elderly, or even our own children whose future social climate depends partly on us. This is what the March for Life truly demonstrates: the witness of those who love and I repeat it is necessary for building a culture that respects life.
In the words of the great musical Les Miserables “The time is now. The day is here!” If we don’t take a stand for life now, who will?
Jessica Resuta is an undergraduate journalism major at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio