As hundreds of thousands are making the trek to Washington D.C., San Francisco, or other communities for marches for life, is it really worth it? Does this really translate to hundreds of thousands of lives being saved?
My answer to those two questions is no with a caveat. For first-timers these marches can be energizing, enlightening, and plus it's great to hang out with like-minded people. I'm sure there are some examples of people that were on the fence about activism, but after the march they went home and actually got very involved with the pro-life movement.
But for nearly all, if they are making the commitment of time and money to travel to be part of the masses, they are already involved in the movement in some way, shape, or form. So the main takeaway from the whole event seems to be that it was fun going on a bus or carpooling and to march with people that think alike. One gets to walk for awhile, hear a few speeches, and possibly do a little networking with others in the movement. That is pretty much it after it's all said and done. How much money was spent to do this that could have been better utilized at local pregnancy centers or to give assistance to those entering abortion facilities?
How much does it cost to go to the March for Life in Washington D.C., 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.
I have never heard of one story of a pro-abortion person having their mind changed because of millions of pro-lifers were marching nationwide. I suppose indirectly that has occurred as some who march may be more inspired to discuss the issue with pro-choicers when they get back home. Every year the pro-lifers scream in outrage that the media ignored the biggest march in the country for any event. The media controls so much of popular opinion so obviously they are doing their best not to give the appropriate exposure for the marches. They may have their obligatory short segment or article, but they often want to balance it with views from the other side. Consequently, if the desire is to have the mainstream media cover it to get people to change their view or even to get a more positive perception of pro-lifers, then that desire fails miserably.
The bottom line is hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers display fortitude, enthusiasm, and commitment just to get an opportunity to walk with people that think like they do. If those same qualities, plus the money spent, were used in real activism locally, abortions would significantly decrease or many more pro-choicers or those on the fence would come to the pro-life side. One can easily be deceived when attending any of these marches that abortion is ending in our county. "Well, just look at all of these people who are against abortion. Look at all the young enthusiastic people involved." For many this is the main event in their year that has anything to do with stopping abortion, but in reality it does virtually nothing to save baby's lives. The only way that thousands of unborn lives will be saved is if all of this energy and money is translated to effective ways to stop abortion once the masses get back home.