The Jan. 14 cover of Time Magazine states, “40 Years Ago, Abortion-rights Activists won an Epic Victory With Roe v. Wade. They’ve Been Losing Ever Since. “
Of course Time magazine is right. It is axiomatic, it is the story of our times, it is the thing every pro-lifer knows: We’re winning this battle.
I can’t understand why colleagues of mine are doubting this.
True, the Time article’s tone is absurdly out of touch, pretending that “the bad guys are taking our rights away. “ But it does point to some of the salient evidence. And yes, the article is playing a game, as Carol Tobias of the National Right to Life points out.
But abortion is a huge winning issue for us, and we should never forget that.
In 2008, Gallup recorded the first majority of Americans — 51% —willing to call themselves “pro-life. “ In 2012, Gallup recorded the lowest mark ever of people willing to call themselves pro-choice — 41%.
Drill down in the May 2012 Gallup abortion poll and you find about 3 in 5 respondents want abortion to be illiegal in “all “ or most circumstances.
Polls show what the March for Life dynamics suggests: After 40 years, the pro-abortion activist energy is depleted and scarce and pro-life energy is young and robust. In Gallup, by more than 3 to 1 margin, those dissatisfied with the abortion laws want them stricter, not more lax.
Seven in 10 support 24-hour waiting periods. More than 7 in 10 want parental consent. Three in 5 support partial-birth aboriton bans. Nearly 9 out of 10 want patients told the risks of abortion — and nearly 9 out of 10 want patients informed about abortion alternatives.
These aren’t just theoretical polling positions, either. State Houses are taking people at their word and getting results.
Why are we winning? Because pro-lifers are tirelessly doing the right thing. They are serving the needs of women, they are publicly protesting this horror, and they are spreading the facts of abortion.
Pro-lifers need to see the consequences of our actions: We are changing hearts and minds.
Now is not the time to celebrate the end of the race, but it certainly isn’t time to deny that we are winning it.
Not only is abortion a winning issue for us, it is a huge opportunity for us. As I wrote elsewhere, by stressing abortion, and pushing forwarded on our winning strategy there, we can change hearts and minds in ways we don’t dare dream of.
Pro-lifers, don’t believe the dark tone of the Time magazine article, but take heart in that cover: Yes, we are winning. Of course we are. In the age of ultrasounds, abortion’s days are numbered.
Let’s finish the job.
Tom Hoopes is writer in residence at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., where he teaches in the Journalism and Mass Communications department and edits the college’s Catholic identity speech digest, The Gregorian.