2/5 UPDATE: The Albuquerque Journal did publish my letter today that is referred to in the article following my letter. Thanks ABQ Journal.
Why Was March for Life Ignored?
The pro-life march in Santa Fe on Jan. 16 wasn’t even considered a newsworthy story by the local media, but on Sunday there was a long article in this paper about the anti-gun march by a only a few thousand in Washington, D.C.
The vast amount of coverage that is given when an infant is killed is entirely appropriate, but where are the stories about more than a dozen unborn humans that die by abortion every day in Albuquerque? There is only silence about this horror. We have one of the very few late-term abortion facilities in the country, and there isn’t any outcry from the media, churches, or the public at large.
Some say abortion is a political or religious issue, so they can give a justification for their apathy. If they were aware that a newborn baby or infant was being beaten to death next door to them, would they respond by saying that it’s a political or religious issue and consequently not do anything? If a young child was about to cross the street into oncoming traffic, would they immediately try to stop them or would they make up an excuse for their inaction?
We have a moral responsibility for the human rights of the unborn. The unborn aren’t given any rights, even though they are just in a different location and are usually not as developed as a newborn. Everyone in this community needs to stand up for the innocent lives that are being destroyed at an alarming rate. The least the Albuquerque Journal could do is expose this tragedy, but it can’t even bring itself to report on others who are shining the light on it.
The March For Life Does Very Little To Stop Abortion
You may have heard of the old statement, "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?"
Likewise, if there's a March for Life in Washington, D.C., attended by approximately 500,000, and no one else hears about it, did it exist? I bring this up because of Jill Stanek's weekend question, "Are pro-life marches a waste of time?"
Of course, I'm being a little facetious since the March received a few snippets of coverage from the mainstream media. Interestingly enough, my local paper, The Albuquerque Journal, decided it had enough space to run an article about Hillary Clinton's glasses instead of anything about the March for Life. They didn't even have any local coverage about our march in Santa Fe. When I wrote them about it they did apologize and said they should have had a story or at least pictures.
Does the March in Washington really accomplish that much? I attended one a few years ago, and two immediate points stuck with me: I am not alone in this fight, and it is awesome that there are so many young people involved. The one aspect that I wondered later about was what the hundreds of thousands do the rest of the year to help save the unborn. If the 500,000 continued their public support of the unborn child throughout the year, it is fathomable that abortion could be dramatically curtailed. Although I believe most that attended were from East or Midwest, the average per state is 10,000. Can you imagine if just 10% of those were very active in their state to stop abortion?
How much does it cost to go to the March for Life, and could that money be better spent fighting abortion at home or sent to national pro-life organizations such as Students For Life, Priests For Life, Survivors, Justice For All, or Live Action, to name a few? Since so many students ride buses to the March and others carpool, I estimate that it cost only $200 per person to attend. This figure is probably way under what is actually spent, but it suffices for the sake of argument. That totals up to 100 million dollars spent to attend an event that virtually has no impact nationwide among "pro-choicers" or those on the fence of the abortion debate. Frankly, that $100,000,000 probably doesn't produce that much momentum during the rest of the year for the pro-life cause or lead to a significant decrease in the number of abortions.
It may be worth all of the effort and money spent for the March for Life if the mainstream media accurately covered the story and gave it the prominence it deserved. I believe at least 90% of Americans didn't even know the March occurred, and those that realized it, probably thought that it's just an annual thing pro-lifers do.
How do we change the situation?
The simple answer is to bring the pro-life issue and the marches to the media. Write or e-mail letters to the newspapers and television stations that ignore the issue, or if a pro-abortion article is written in your local paper, send an e-mail explaining the pro-life view to the reporter. Recently in the Albuquerque Journal a front page opinion story was totally against the woman's right to know legislation introduced in the New Mexico legislature. The reporter and I had an e-mail exchange about the life issue, which didn't change her mind for now. But if enough people respond to the pro-abortion articles then possibly the pro-life view might be given a fair shot in the media. Also, when the occasional fair pro-life story is published it's a good idea to shoot off an e-mail to thank them
In the Albuquerque Journal for Sunday, February 3, four articles dealt with the abortion issue. Three of them were about an investigation into a late-term abortionist here, and the other was a letter written in response to the front page opinion piece I mentioned before. This investigation of the abortionist was mainly done by Tara and Bud Shaver here in Albuquerque after receiving 911 tapes, and consequently the media was informed of the entire incident and proceedings. If the 500,000 that attended the March for Life went home and were involved even to a small degree of what the Shavers have done, we would definitely see a major reduction in abortion.
I have never heard of a march or other vigils in front of media facilities, but it might be an idea worth trying. What if 100 people peacefully assembled in front of a television station or newspaper office? Of course, there is a possibility that it could backfire and the pro-life coverage could never see the light of day. Since it is virtually non-existent nationwide anyway then what do we have to lose?
We need to funnel our energy, time, and resources into fighting for the unborn through the media and other outlets. It is obvious that in the big picture the March for Life serves very little purpose.