AMAC Exclusive – By Ben Solis
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, both Republicans and Democrats have attempted to use the ruling to sway voters and win elections. But as previous generations of pro-life activists have taught us, the battle to protect the unborn must also be waged at the cultural level in order to build a society that holds true to the belief that all life is worth living.
The prevailing mainstream media narrative following the Dobbs decision was that the subsequent cascade of pro-life state laws would be an electoral vulnerability for Republicans.
That indeed seemed to be the case in typically conservative states like Kansas, where voters last year rejected a pro-life state constitutional amendment and then re-elected their Democrat governor who made abortion a major issue in the race. Politicians promising liberal abortion laws also won in Kentucky and Michigan.
In other states, however, this narrative did not hold up as well. In Ohio and Georgia, voters overwhelmingly re-elected Republican governors and state legislatures who enacted strong pro-life laws.
In response to these mixed results, some on the right have advocated that Republicans retreat from their pre-Dobbs opposition to abortion out of fear of losing elections.
But this position misunderstands that overturning Roe was not just the end of one fight, but the start of another. If Republicans and the pro-life movement truly want to protect the unborn, they must now work to build a culture of life and reverse the decades of anti-life sentiment the left has worked to instill in every American institution.
Conservatives need only look at the unhinged reaction of the left to the Dobbs decision to see how determined their opponents are. The Supreme Court Justices who signed on to the majority opinion faced very serious assassination threats and protests outside their homes which were encouraged by President Joe Biden himself. Justice Samuel Alito commented that he had to be driven around in “basically a tank” to protect him from pro-abortion activists.
Pro-abortion activists also attacked pro-life pregnancy centers and churches under the cover of darkness. Thousands marched in the streets and demanded the right to unrestricted abortion.
All of this evidence reflects the fact that the abortion issue is a question of spiritual and cultural decay, not just political divisions. While the right affirms the basic humanity and value of the unborn, the left denies their humanity altogether – dehumanization in the purest sense of the word.
This position by the left reflects an erosion of the concept of “inalienable rights” which was pioneered by the American Founding Fathers and was once the standard throughout the West. In the 20th century, the rise of radical social and political movements began to deny these rights under the pretense of enhancing “quality of life” and vague arguments about the “good of society.”
The apogee of this backward and anti-human thinking was the Holocaust, an unspeakable tragedy that was only possible through a society-wide denial of the sanctity and value of human life – the idea that some lives were inherently less valuable than others.
While the world united to extinguish the great evil of the Holocaust, the cultural poison of the denial of the sanctity of life continued to fester throughout the West through the pro-abortion movement, spread by postmodern academics and liberal politicians feigning “compassion” for women.
While most Western countries have now completely succumbed to pro-abortion extremism, America has retained a relatively strong culture of life, with a vibrant pro-life movement. Recent polling data from NPR indicates that more than two-thirds of Americans say they want abortion limited to the first trimester. A Marist poll from April shows that six in ten Americans oppose taxpayer-funded abortion.
On the other hand, liberal voters are increasingly more likely to support late-term abortions, including of babies who are viable outside the womb. In one harrowing example that made the rounds on social media recently, abortionist Hern Bristles admitted he has performed late term abortions involving healthy mothers and infants that could have survived outside the womb, and on one occasion he even aborted a baby because her mother “didn’t want to have a baby girl.”
To begin to understand how they can build on the momentum of Dobbs and build a culture of life, conservatives may find it useful to turn to Whatever Happened to the Human Race?, a 1979 book (that was subsequently turned into an excellent movie) from former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop and Christian writer and thinker Dr. Francis Schaeffer.
The book emphasizes that a fundamental shift in worldview will be necessary to turn public opinion against abortion. The authors name three specific steps to accomplish this: education, culture, and legislation.
“We must say that we are proponents of the sanctity of all human life – born and unborn; old and young; black, white, brown and yellow,” they write. “Without uniqueness and inherent dignity of each human being, no matter how old or young, sick or well, resting on the fact that each person is made in the image of God, there is no sufficient foundation to build on as we resist the loss of humanness in our generation.”
They encouraged the recovery of correctly understanding women’s rights by pointing out that a woman cannot “liberate” herself by killing her infant, and that such thinking often leads to life-long feelings of guilt – as recent studies on severe Post-Abortion Stress Syndrome, and even a testimony on TikTok suggest.
The key, as Koop and Schaeffer identify, is “renewed social atmosphere.”
Americans can look in many places both at home and abroad – although so often not in the mainstream media – for inspiring examples of what this atmosphere of life might look like. It can be found in single-mother households, orphanages, or aged-care facilities. Upon visiting an orphanage in Central Europe funded by American Christians, evangelist Billy Graham once told employees that “they were most compelling apostles of life, making themselves channel of genuine love.” Those who give dignity and care to others in need are a living testament to the inherent value of every person.
In the age of social media, everyone can make these noble efforts more visible, contributing to a culture of life and inspiring others to follow.
Despite the sharp national divide, Americans still can foresee horrendous consequences of rejecting unalienable rights and, as a nation, recognize the urgent moral imperative to protect the unborn.
Therefore, it is time to stand bolder and more courageously opposing the media, political left, and cultural elites, and declare the truth that “all life is worth living.”
Ben Solis is the pen name of an international affairs journalist, historian, and researcher.