I’m unapologetically pro-life, and I’m ashamed that Trump spoke at the March for Life

President Donald Trump speaks to participants of the annual March for Life event, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Today thousands upon thousands of people attended the March for Life rally in Washington, D.C., to be a voice for the unborn. I was not at the march, but I was cheering on my friends in attendance. I am passionately and unapologetically pro-life, which is why I am devastated by the decision of the March for Life organizers to allow the movement to be diminished by featuring President Donald J. Trump. My sorrow has nothing to do with a dislike for the man and everything to do with my belief that his involvement will damage a deeply important movement.

In response to criticism regarding the inclusion of President Trump, some have argued, “Don’t let Trump’s involvement dominate this event.” In other words, “Let’s just not talk about it.” Unfortunately, the scandal of Mr. Trump’s involvement was unavoidable the minute organizers invited him to give an address. Ignoring how problematic this invitation was will not make its unfortunate consequences disappear.

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Why is it unacceptable for this sitting U.S. president to speak at the march? It is not that Mr. Trump has character flaws and should therefore be excluded from supporting a good cause. Regardless of his alleged extramarital relationships with porn stars, his mocking of people with disabilities, his historically pro-choice stance, his defense of Planned Parenthood during the presidential debates (surely, I do not need to go on), as Catholics we believe no one is undeserving of redemption. We can and should laud good legislation that protects the vulnerable without having to give a stamp of approval to the character of the politicians supporting it. And if we required perfection from everyone who marched today, we would have an empty event.

The primary problem is not with Mr. Trump’s past sins, it is that the policies he currently supports are inconsistent with his claim in his address today that “every life is sacred.” And where do we begin? His inhumane deportation policies? His seeming belief that the value of lives from prosperous countries are worth more than those from poor—or as he allegedly put it, “shithole”—countries? His threats to end thousands of lives with nuclear war? Legislation that benefits the wealthy while treating the poor with disdain? I’ll let you choose; the list is a mile long. By making Donald Trump a figurehead for this movement, organizers of the March for Life offer not a consistent and beautiful ethic of life, but a farce, a brazen hypocrisy.

By making Donald Trump a figurehead for this movement, organizers of the March for Life offer not a consistent and beautiful ethic of life, but a farce, a brazen hypocrisy.

After all, why do we march? Is it because babies are cute? No. (Although, in my opinion, babies are indeed very cute.) A truly pro-life ethic is founded on the truth that the life of every human being is worthy of dignity and protection. The pro-life movement is full of many different kinds of people with diverse ideologies, all joined together to protect the dignity of human life. The March for Life is intended to galvanize and unify supporters of the pro-life movement, and to change hearts and minds by communicating the truth and beauty of honoring all life, no matter how vulnerable. The choice of speakers this year failed this mission. Featuring politicians like Mr. Trump engenders division. It confirms the misconception that the pro-life movement is indeed an ideology that only cares about an unborn child until he or she exits the womb. It proves to everyone who has been watching this movement to see if we truly desire good for vulnerable women and children that the movement is inconsistent and their skepticism and dismissal were warranted.

While we cannot expect everyone to like us, pro-lifers should care about the scandal this creates for those watching from the outside. What will a woman facing a crisis pregnancy remember from following this event? Will she be bolstered by the knowledge that there are thousands of people on her side, desiring to support her in carrying this vulnerable life and raising it if she so desires? Or will she remember that it was headlined by a man who treats women as sex objects, who has said women who get abortions should be jailed, whose policies hurt the vulnerable and could lead more women to desperate decisions?

Allowing Mr. Trump to speak for the movement is a slap in the face to those who have been fighting tirelessly for the good of vulnerable children and women. Pro-lifers, we have been warned that we are nothing but pawns to these politicians—by allowing them to be the face of our movement, we are playing into their manipulation. I speak out about this because I want more babies to be protected in the womb and more mothers in crisis to be inspired to choose life for their children. I want those on the outskirts to join in this fight with us when they see the truth that the life of every human being is deserving of dignity.

Heartbreakingly, these poor decisions by the March for Life organizers will not further these goals, but hinder them. A hypocritical and inconsistent life ethic will diminish the strength of this movement and discredit it. We must do better because there is so much at stake—it is truly a matter of life and death.

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Cynthia Coleman
1 month ago

Yes and Yes and Yes and Yes! Trump's involvement today is a "scandal" and discredits the pro-life movement overall. You so eloquently brought together thoughts I have been fighting against all day. "The primary problem is not with Mr. Trump’s past sins, it is that the policies he currently supports are inconsistent with his claim in his address today that “every life is sacred." I did not go to the march today, though I have other years. When I heard about Trump's involvement I was glad I would not be there. Much as the name "Christian" has been sullied by the slavish way Evangelicals have tied their wagon to his star, the pro-life movement will be similarly hurt.

Gabriel Marcella
1 month ago

Sadly the pro-life movement associates with a person who will do great damage over time to the cause of life. From his perspective it's a tactical ploy designed to obtain votes. Moreover, there is little indication that he understands and believes in the sanctity of life. A seamless garment to him would be a fancy suit.

Catherine K
1 month ago

On which facts are you basing this argument? All I got from the article was emotionally charged rhetoric and very little fact.

Lisa Weber
1 month ago

Thank you for a wonderful article, Haley Stewart! Having Trump speak is scandalous because of his current policies and actions, but his past is still relevant because he show no signs of repenting of any of it.

Juana Lluch
1 month ago

Did the author publicly voice her "shame" when pro-abortion, pro-forced abortion, pro-population control, pro-mass sterilization zealot Paul Ehrlich spoke at a Vatican conference last year? If not, her comments can't be taken seriously. Several pro-abortion leaders have been given public platforms by Pope Francis' Vatican and/or given honors and awards by the Pope himself. Did the author publicly wring her hands over the "hypocritical and inconsistent life ethic" of the Vatican and worry that it "will diminish the strength of this movement and discredit it"? If not, the author's own "consistency" is called into question.

S Jacob
1 month ago

The premise of this article is so ridiculous. You don’t turn down the President of the United States when he or she offers to speak in support of your event or cause, EVER.

Had Obama decided he wanted to throw his support behind a previous March For Life, or at least show up and offer an olive branch to pro-lifers for how we can work together to further pro-life goals, he would have absolutely been accepted and we would have praised him for this, regardless of his terrible past like his support for partial birth abortion and the countless of funds he raised for the coffers of pro-death forces.

This opinion and those of other liberal (read: not well read) Catholics is born from nothing but pure spite and hatred of Donald Trump. It is lacking any intellectual honesty and is a cheap attempt at clicks from other Trump haters. I know this author personally, and I honestly thought she was better than this. I am extremely disappointed in her.

The facts are the facts. Donald Trump is governing as the most pro-life president since Reagan. Like him or hate him personally, his pro-life bona fides AS A POLITICIAN in the last year is clear and decisive. It is untenable to claim anything but Trump is a solid, pro-life politician. Yes, he can do more, and I hope he does. All signs are pointing to him continuing to be a pro-life leader - not because it’s a popular position, but because he truly respects life and is using his power for good.

How about celebrate the good in people instead of insult their past? Shame on you Haley.

Genevieve Burns
1 month ago

Good post!

M. C. Thompson
1 month ago

Thank you for this post! I could not have said it better myself. We had a president in Obama that supported partial birth abortion right up until birth. Trump can say all sorts of crazy things that I wish he didn't but is actions, including addressing the march, were very pro-life and will serve to advance the cause.

N GR
1 month ago

With respect sir, I think you missed the primary point of the article: "The primary problem is not with Mr. Trump’s past sins, it is that the policies he currently supports are inconsistent with his claim in his address today that “every life is sacred.” And where do we begin? His inhumane deportation policies? His seeming belief that the value of lives from prosperous countries are worth more than those from poor—or as he allegedly put it, “shithole”—countries? His threats to end thousands of lives with nuclear war? Legislation that benefits the wealthy while treating the poor with disdain? I’ll let you choose; the list is a mile long. By making Donald Trump a figurehead for this movement, organizers of the March for Life offer not a consistent and beautiful ethic of life, but a farce, a brazen hypocrisy."

What Donald Trump's presence at the March for Life does is to make the pro-life movement completely inaccessible to anyone who does not already support it. Why? Because his consistent disregard for the value of human life outside the womb -- apparent not just in his words, but also in his policies -- undermines his credibility to speak about the "sanctity of human life." President Trump is not a "pro-life leader;" he is a Republican president who has crafted a few anti-abortion policies. But his views on immigration, the environment, the refugee crisis, his willingness to threaten military conflict that fails to fall within the parameters of just war theory, and many other public statements and policies are thoroughly incompatible with the doctrine of human dignity held by the Catholic Church. Also, that is not simply my opinion...the Catholic bishops in this country have repeatedly and explicitly condemned Mr. Trump's positions and actions on these non-abortion life issues.

Finally, I must urge you to reconsider your equating of 'liberal' with 'not well read' as it relates to Catholics. When I think of 'liberal' Catholics, I generally think of the following positions: 1) right of workers to unionize (Leo XIII, Rerum Novarum); 2) obligation of the state to ensure a just wage (John Paul II, Centesimus Annus); 3) the fundamental right of people to migrate to sustain their lives (Pius XII, Exsul Familia); 3) obligation to care for the environment (Francis, Laudato Si); 4) absolute obligation of the state to avoid military conflict unless extremely strict measures of just war are met (CCC, and St. Thomas Aquinas); 5) absolute obligation of the society to seek justice for all people, especially migrants, orphans, and widows (the prophet Amos, among others). As I have shown, these positions are thoroughly engrained in the Catholic tradition and magisterial teaching. I would suggest that anyone who does not accept any of those principles might be in need of some reading. Whatever Mr. Trump's positive actions regarding abortion may be, the totality of his presidential policies and public statements cannot be seen as being 'pro-life.'

Heidi Bizon
1 month ago

Actually, when the President of the United States offers to speak you should critically evaluate if he's using the opportunity to appeal to his base, or sincerely supportive of your cause. This is easily discernible in this event as our current President has made it abundantly clear he does not advocate for the life, whether that life is still in the womb, desperately escaping war and famine, or afflicted by a physical handicap. His status as President is not nearly as important as his character as evidenced by his own words, tweets, and behaviours. These elements, which comprise and reflect his character, can either lend credibility to, or stale the progress of, any cause or movement.
Your assertion that any person who objects to President Trump's presence must be born of spite and hatred reveals your own heart by refusing to acknowledge that another can possibly hold an opinion based upon critical thinking if that opinion is in opposition to your own. This attitude is a covert attempt to marginalize the author's opinion. Attempting to discredit another this way is actually the easiest method as it doesn't require you to support your claims; which you didn't.
I'm Christian, Pro Life, Republican and Conservative, and I'm also "well read". I agree with this author's premise, which is based upon truth.
No person, president or otherwise, who openly mocks handicapped people (and don't even try because yes, he did), turns his heart from the "least of these" in his immigration policies, defunds birth control programs that minimize the occurrence of unwanted pregnancies thereby resulting, exponentially, in higher rates of abortion, and encourages acts of physical violence, can ever be called Pro Life.
As to insulting one's past? Pointing out well-known, documented fact isn't insulting his past. It's just that; pointing out well-known, documented fact to support her beautifully written, truthful, piece. Writing such a piece takes courage, critical thinking, eloquent writing skills, and a tremendous faith in God to answer His call to speak truthfully in accordance with His Word.
Haley nailed it.
Since you consider yourself well read...
www.fox4now.com/newsy/over-200-million-cut-from-teen-pregnancy-preventi…
www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/trump-administration-abruptly-cuts-funding…
www.usnews.com/opinion/civil-wars/articles/2017-10-18/trumps-contracept…

Heidi Bizon
1 month ago

Actually, when the President of the United States offers to speak you should critically evaluate if he's using the opportunity to appeal to his base, or sincerely supportive of your cause. This is easily discernible in this event as our current President has made it abundantly clear he does not advocate for the life, whether that life is still in the womb, desperately escaping war and famine, or afflicted by a physical handicap. His status as President is not nearly as important as his character as evidenced by his own words, tweets, and behaviours. These elements, which comprise and reflect his character, can either lend credibility to, or stale the progress of, any cause or movement.
Your assertion that any person who objects to President Trump's presence must be born of spite and hatred reveals your own heart by refusing to acknowledge that another can possibly hold an opinion based upon critical thinking if that opinion is in opposition to your own. This attitude is a covert attempt to marginalize the author's opinion. Attempting to discredit another this way is actually the easiest method as it doesn't require you to support your claims; which you didn't.
I'm Christian, Pro Life, Republican and Conservative, and I'm also "well read". I agree with this author's premise, which is based upon truth.
No person, president or otherwise, who openly mocks handicapped people (and don't even try because yes, he did), turns his heart from the "least of these" in his immigration policies, defunds birth control programs that minimize the occurrence of unwanted pregnancies thereby resulting, exponentially, in higher rates of abortion, and encourages acts of physical violence, can ever be called Pro Life.
As to insulting one's past? Pointing out well-known, documented fact isn't insulting his past. It's just that; pointing out well-known, documented fact to support her beautifully written, truthful, piece. Writing such a piece takes courage, critical thinking, eloquent writing skills, and a tremendous faith in God to answer His call to speak truthfully in accordance with His Word.
Haley nailed it.
Since you consider yourself well read...
www.fox4now.com/newsy/over-200-million-cut-from-teen-pregnancy-preventi…
www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/trump-administration-abruptly-cuts-funding…
www.usnews.com/opinion/civil-wars/articles/2017-10-18/trumps-contracept…

Kathy Shelton
3 weeks 3 days ago

Accurately criticize facts from non facts. Most of what the harlot said was her opinion. I thought this was an article on abortion. No, it was slander against how POTUS ruined this poor whiny mommy’s chance to go to the March. She has a pathetic psyche if she lets a person keep her from something she so much wanted to attend! Honestly, it’s drama for the little article to make it sound like this poor woman’s rights were hindered by Trump being there. I actually think this Haley should thank Trump. It’s apparent she needs mental help! Take responsibility for why you do or don’t do things. Don’t blame anyone else because you missed the march! Pity Poor Me!

Stuart Meisenzahl
3 weeks 1 day ago

Kathy
I suggest you check your "auto speller" which has transmogrified your post to read "Harlot" instead of Haley
If you weren't tricked by that program , then I suggest you delete your entire tendentious comment

Ayante Polvo
1 month ago

What? Trump addressed the March for Life? Where was that in the news? The President of the United States spoke for the FIRST TIME to the biggest annual event in Washington (ignored year after year by the discredited mainstream media --thanks WikiLeaks) and the Fake News press still gets away with its complicit silence?

But these same cretins will talk and write without end of the "milestones" of the pornographic Women's March, not saying a word on the crude display of female genitalia and talk of bombing the White House. Grotesque.

Clare Baxter
1 month ago

It is unbelievable how evil our media is now, very complicit with the killing of innocent unborn children. I am not sure if Fox had it on their station, haven't watched the news all weekend, but I read about it online. It is shameful; I am so proud of President Trump for standing up for the unborn, he is amazing!

Jim Lein
4 weeks 1 day ago

Republicans including President Trump are for cutting programs that help the unborn develop and become born. They see cutting programs that help the needy as a way of teaching persons to become more responsible. What does this "teach" the unborn who do not develop automatically but need a relatively calm nurturing environment and sufficient intrauterine nourishment and medical checkups and supervision? CHIP has apparently survived for now but WIC and SNAP and TANF and Medicaid could be cut if the GOP and Trump have their way.
And when it comes to unwanted or crisis or problem pregnancies, who is responsible for all of them? Us guys. In many cases it is the man responsible for the pregnancy who pressures the woman to have an abortion. Studies have shown that from 1/3 to 2/3 of women who have an abortion are pressured to have it. And our capitalistic society is not hospitable to the unborn, to babies, especially nursing babies, and to young children. Our society, especially the GOP, is too focused on money. The GOP tends to see Jesus' way of people pooling their resources, even selling their homes to do so, to help the needy as socialistic. And that label apparently frees them from following Jesus' way.
Pardon my geezer graybeard ramble, but one last comment. I can't help but recall the Cheers episode where the guys were passing around the latest Playboy, then when Carla started to nurse her baby, they were shocked and disgusted. That seems like our society today.

Stuart Meisenzahl
3 weeks ago

Jim
House Bill #4712 requires physicians and assistants performing abortions to provide care and hospitalization to any infant born alive in the course of the attempted abortion. 183 Democrats voted against this bill...I believe 6 voted for it.
I emphasize that the Bill is talking about an incontrovertibly human being who is totally helpless and dependent on the actions of those doctors and assistants.
While it seems inexplicable as to why such a bill would be needed, The Democratic NO vote on the Bill demonstrates the very reason such a Bill is required.

Marie S
1 month ago

I am trying not to loose respect for American magazine and the author, who like others I expected a lot more from. Some of this is taken so out of context, and how have so many Catholics still not researched that there is a video rebuttal on how Trump did not make fun of someone with disabilities!? Let's get our facts straight, instead of lining up with every liberal news station! Trump may not be the perfect human, just as none of us are, but I can not believe the judgement, scewing of facts, and negativity at it's worst. . . coming from the *almost pharisee like* anti-trumpers. (I'm going to choose to believe the Best about this magazine and author and that they aren't all in this pharisee like group.) Pink the plank out of one's own eye. . .before condemning anthers motives or worth in your movement. Let's look at the absolute sinner's God has used to accomplish His purposes. From Moses, David. . . we could list dozens. I hope the author and this magazine never will have the same spirit putting them down through the same kind of twisted hyper scrutiny, fault finding, and opinions- judging them. "Satan is the accuser of the brethern" as the bible says, and he just loves to stir up division this way. Trump has room to grow in his Faith for sure. . .but Let's speak Life and Hope and Faith over people!!! Let's pray. . . more than we condemn!
I also love the point about Obama, from another poster!
Come Holy Spirit! Make Trump humble, but most of all make US HUMBLE! <3

Mary FioRito
1 month ago

Ms. Stewart begins with the assumption that the March organizers explicitly invited the President. I don't believe that is the case (and America might call Jeannie Mancini to verify). My understanding is that they asked the Vice-President to attend, as he did last year, but were told that the President also wanted to offer some remarks. At that point, they were stuck -- how do you say, "Thanks, but no thanks" without causing problems? (Not to mention appearing incredibly rude.) And President Trump is hardly "a figurehead for this movement." He's new to the cause, as Ms. Stewart rightly points out. Whenever you get in the business of inviting politicians to your events, you run the risk of something like the occurring. That being said, his highlighting the story of Marianne Dinadio and her ministry to homeless pregnant women, "Room at the Inn" was beautiful, and captured the heart of pro-life community. (Could America do a feature on her, please?)

Kathleen Brown
1 month ago

In short, "judge not or ye shall be judged!!!" Let us be deeply grateful to God
that we have a President who is Pro-Life and let us love ALL the courageous voices who speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves.

Douglas Fang
1 month ago

I don’t believe that POTUS Trump is pro-life as well as a majority of people who claim to be pro-life. They are just pro-birth. If they are pro-life, they should support policies that really support life before and after birth. America has one of the highest infant mortality of advanced countries (OECD). Why bothering giving births and let these babies die prematurely?! Similarly, maternal care and support are very low compared to other advanced countries. Now, with the reduced tax collected by the government, low income and poor women will face even tougher time for carrying and taking care of newborn babies. I’m not defending abortion as I believe that abortion is evil and a crime. I just believe that to reduce abortion, we need to do a whole lot more than just paying lip service to condemn abortion.

PS – Abortion rate in America is trending lower and lower and is now at the LOWEST recorded rate since the Roe decision in 1973! Should it be the cause for some optimism? Can we identify the forces that are at work here and continue to pursue them rather than just mindlessly condemning abortion?

Chris Hohowski
1 month ago

Trump bragged about his past abortions on Howard Stern for any one who wants to look up that smut. How can anyone be more pro-abortion than that? No repentance of course from him.

Jen N
1 month ago

There are former abortionists, who have killed thousands of children, who have experienced conversions and the attend the March for Life. The March is often led my hundreds of women and men who have lost children to abortion, and are now pro-life. There are also former abortion clinic owners and staff, those who used to advocate for abortion... even the "Roe" in Roe v. Wade and the "Doe" in Doe v Bolton, the subequent case that made abortion legal in all 9 months of pregnancy, have marched in the March for Life. They are all against abortion now and have tried relentlessly to overturn legal abortion. Maybe Trump is responsible for abortions - many powerful, rich men are. Maybe he once bragged about his past abortions, some men and women do. But there comes a time, when truth is unavoidable, and it hits you straight in the face and you can no longer avoid it. Like former abortionists, who once used to brag about killing babies and now greatly regret what they have done, I believe President Trump, now knows the truth and he won't shut up about it.

Tim Donovan
1 month ago

You make an excellent point about how there are abortionists who fortunately have changed their minds. Most likely the late Bernard Nathanson, M. D. Is the most prominent former abortionist. He wrote a compelling and unbiased book about abortion, "Aborting America," which I read years ago. Although in the book he still supported legal abortion, it was interesting and I think significant that biology, not theology has convinced him that abortion killed a human being. This was when he was an atheist. He did, however, favor some legal restrictions on abortion. But in his being unbiased , he both criticized the "specious arguments for abortion" as well as the " specious arguments against abortion. " But he had been the medical director of the largest legal abortion clinic in the United States, and had personally performed over 5,000 violent abortions. Over time, religion began to make more sense to him, and he went to being an atheist to an agnostic to a Catholic.
You're also on target about the plaintiff in Roe v. Wade, Norma McCorvey. She never did have an abortion. though she supported legal abortion, and both wrote a book detailing her views condoning legal abortion, and for a time worked at an abortion clinic. In time she became a Christian who opposed abortion, and then converted to the Catholic faith and became outspoken in her pro-life convictions, speaking (along with Dr. Nathanson, I believe) at the March for Life.

Clare Baxter
1 month ago

You know his heart and his repentance to God? God is a God of mercy and 2nd chances, he forgives and changes peoples hearts, humans, like you, are incapable of forgiveness and true love. You call yourself a Catholic, is that the same as Christian, and condemn Trump for something that happened years ago? I have never had an abortion but in my younger years in college, I thought that it was just fine. That was before I learned the truth about the cruelty and moral evilness of the practice. You, as a lot of "elitist", hate Trump, period, and will condemn him on anything that he does. You make me sick!

Jen N
1 month ago

Abortion often causes problems in subsequent "wanted" pregnancies. Many women who have experienced abortion often experience premature labor, as a result of damage done to their cervix during their abortions. Sometimes the baby is born before she can live on her own. This is a common occurrence in pregnancy after abortion - not all women who experience preterm labor have had abortions, but the majority have. Ireland had the lowest rate of infant and maternal mortality in the world. (Women still die from legal abortion - it is considered a "maternal" death in the US) Ireland is one of the few countries where abortion is illegal. They have been rated with the healthiest women worldwide. Even with abortion rates decreasing, we still kill over 1 million children in the US every year, and there is no one counting the contraception related abortions that happen. In DC, more children are aborted than born. In NY and CA, the number of abortions are not even kept record of. Women are not even informed that their hormonal contraception can cause abortions to their children at implantation. I am a single mom of two children. I raise both on my own. I nearly lost my first to abortion. I would rather live in a card board box than support any politician who thought it was ok for me to barbarically destroy the love of my life and would not have attempted to protect her.. I do not care about hand outs, God will provide what we need, and has. Her life is more important than us having a big beautiful house or driving in a brand new car. We have a warm home, we have food on the table; most importantly, we have each other. Family is what is most important. :)

Clare Baxter
1 month ago

Jen N, that was beautiful! You are so correct, family is most important, also God will provide because he loves children. He wants you to be dependant on him for provisions, life can be hard but killing your baby is not the answer. I am sure that a lot of women who have had abortions have terrible regrets, so sad. I am sure that it is scary if you are not married, if you are really young, broke, etc. but killing your baby is not the answer. Thank God that we now have support groups and homes to help these women during their pregnancy rather than brutally killing the baby.

Abortion is barbaric, how anyone, for any reason, can condone the killing of a small, helpless, life growing in you. It is a blessing to give life. I can understand how a lot of women were uninformed back in the day before internet, and had their babies aborted, but not anymore. There is a lot of support now for women and the children and probably should be more but we are improving as to how to help these women in a crisis.

Tim Donovan
1 month ago

With respect, sir, as I noted in my post I do support many positions on legislation that benefits human beings after birth. Is President Trump sincerely pro-life? It's very likely that, given his past statements in support of legal abortion that he simply adopted a pro-life position to win the Republican presidential nomination. However, please let me make three points. First, people can and do change their minds about abortion, and those in politics often do for political reasons. The most notable example in my opinion (though he's not quite as prominent in the news as he once was) is Rev. Jesse Jackson. In 1977, Jackson wrote an open letter to Congress in which he opposes federal funding of abortion, calling on lawmakers not to support a law that meant "killing infants." One wouldn't expect that someone who used so strong, even dramatic, language would change his mind. However , by the time he ran for president in 1984, he was entirely in favor of the violence of legal abortion for any reason. I might add that in the 1970's, Rev. Jackson was scheduled to speak at the March for Life, but had to cancel because of illness in his family. Also, in 1977, Jackson wrote a compelling article not only against legal abortion but against other threats to human life in the National Right to Life News, the newspaper of the largest pro-life group in our nation. Second, countless pro-life people support prolife alternative-to - abortion groups which provide pregnant women with compassionate, practical assistance, either by volunteer work or financial support. Without being immodest, I financially support two pro-life crisis pregnancy centers. Third, I agree that providing women with good prenatal care is crucial to saving the lives and good health of pregnant women and their unborn babies. I do believe that your average pro-life person supports such programs. However, I do believe that the news media often unfairly stereotypes pro-life people as all being politically conservative. I certainly agree that many are, but I believe there are more than a few pro-life people like me who are politically "liberal". We simply don't get the attention that conservative pro-life people get. Finally, I agree that it's good news that our nation's abortion rate is trending downward. There are in my view three reasons (possibly more-I'm certainly no expert) why the number of abortions is declining. One is that there are numerous alternative -to-abortion agencies that save many lives. A second reason is laws that restrict abortion, especially U believe laws that prohibit tax-funded abortions, and require parental consent of notification before a minor girl can have an abortion, and informed consent laws (which give women the option of learning what abortion is, the possible side effects of both abortion and childbirth, and the existence of crisis pregnancy centers, as well as the responsibility of men to pay child support . My state, Pennsylvania, has such a law, which was upheld by the Supreme Court in Casey v. Planned Parenthood in 1992. Finally, it may be that there are more people using contraception or choosing sterilization. I do support (as undoubtedly do most pro-life people) legal contraception and sterilization for adults. (I do believe that a minor should have parental consent in order to receive contraceptives). Having said that, I do believe that natural family planning (NFP) is the only moral way to plan one's family. When used properly and consistently, NFP is highly effective. In addition, it doesn't have any adverse side effects as do many contraceptives . Finally, the unfortunate fact is that some methods of birth control such as IUD's are actually early abortions, not contraceptives.

Larry Cirignano
1 month ago

163 Democrat members of congress voted against stopping infants who are born alive from being killed. That is abortion extremist. Abortion is not a political question it is a civil rights question and the President can use his bully pulpit to make a difference. His leadership can encourage state legislatures and Governors to join in the fight, to take courageous stands against this most basic violation of a promise of America to the right to life. 30 years ago President Reagan said life begins at conception. We need our government leaders to reinforce that message. www.personhoodproclamation.com

Jen N
1 month ago

I was ecstatic that Trump spoke at the March for Life. He is the only president to speak so strongly for life - ever. He is the only president who has ever been so vocal and unapologetic about his goal to end abortion. Other "pro-life" presidents have danced around and softened their support. I have been attending for the past 16 years. I nearly lost a child to abortion when I was 19. She has been the greatest gift I have ever been given and is the most important person in my life. Mr. Trump is not afraid of the back lash speaking out against abortion will cause him. He is not afraid to stand up to the media who often twist the pro-life position and paint us in a negative light. I have a past. I have made poor choices at times. No one who attends the March for Life is without sin. Some are not even Christians. There are atheists and agnostic people who march, there are Jews... all sorts of people - even former abortionists who killed thousands of children, former abortion clinic employees, former abortion clinic owners, women and men who have lost children to abortion, all sorts of people who have been impacted by abortion.

I am grateful the president took the time to address and speak at the March for Life - which is often ignored and downplayed by the secular media. Abortion has wiped out 1/3 of my generation. It has killed more people than all war related deaths; through out American history, added together. It's the leading cause of death in America - more common than all cancer, heart disease, and HIV-related deaths added together. We do not have enough of us young adults to care properly for the elderly (Baby boomers) , or to pay into the social security system now. For our president to ignore the March for Life - as President Obama did for the last 8 years - would only further devastate our Country. Abortion numbers went down, but not all State report their abortion numbers, such as California and New York. Not all abortions are reported when legally required to do so. Under Obama, Planned Parenthood built and opened new mega abortion centers and all of us were forced to pay for abortion and abortion inducing contraceptives.

Regarding deportation. It is sad to see families torn apart, but that is the devastating consequence of breaking the law. (families are broken apart when other laws are broken and the guilty person is put in prison) I could not visit the UK and just decide to stay, nor France, nor the Middle East - each country would hold me accountable. My children would suffer because of my choice not to enter legally.

I have been to rural villages in Mexico where there are no young men. Only elderly men, women, and children. How is a village supposed to flourish with all the young men gone? Who is to protect and provide for the mothers and their children? Who is to help care for the aging population?
Who is to work hard for the future of the village? Who is to build and fix homes and other projects? Then men have left, hoping to cross the US border. Many die/are killed along the way. Many make it only to find out that life in the US can be very difficult and expensive. Some stop sending money back home and find new wives, abandoning their wives and children back, in their village, to absolute poverty. (Houses without windows, with card board/plastic bag walls, leaking roofs, dirt floors, and kitchen tables used as beds. ) I have personally seen this. When the young men in a village are gone, there is no hope for the village.

Social justice issues are important, but abortion trumps them all. The child in the womb has broken no law, has not sinned. He/she is completely innocent. Abortion pits mothers against their own children, as enemies. It literally destroys the family with death. It is barbaric, and it often causes a lifetime of grief, guilt, and heartache for those who experience it.

Catherine K
1 month ago

Should Lincoln not have been the face of the Abolitionist movement because he also authorized the execution of Native Americans?

Trump is the most pro-life president we have had since Roe vs. Wade. I am using pro-life in the terms that the March for Life uses it: abortion, abortion, abortion. How? Trump nominated pro-life VP and judge Neil Gorsuch. He reinstated Mexico City Policy. He defunded United Nations Population Fund. He signed HJ Res 43; and I could go on and on because that's not even close to everything he has done.

Are issues that regard immigrants and minorities important? Yes, but the March for Life is to recognize specifically the murdering of unborn children that was legalized in our country on January 22nd 1973. And we finally have a president who is acting swiftly to undo laws that harm the unborn.

I always thought that as Catholics we recognize that God works through broken people and celebrate the goodness in people. At least, that's how I live out my Faith. And I truly thank God for Donald Trump's work for the pro-life cause.

J Cosgrove
1 month ago

I’m unapologetically pro-life, and I’m ashamed that Trump spoke at the March for Life

You should be ashamed that you wrote this headline.

We all know that Trump is a bore, used to be pro-abortion progressive Democrat, has had three wives and probably a zillion girl friends, probably played fast and loose with the tax laws but he somehow is governing in a responsible way. He also has an incredible "will to succeed."

That will to succeed has led the way to a pro-life agenda, sensible judicial appointments, attitudes and actions that have led to a booming economy, following the law, supporting our military and police forces, and many other positive things. The list is a mile long of good things that have happened since he has been elected. All this in spite of nearly 100% opposition by the press with fake news (the greatest fake news story of our lifetimes is the Russian Collusion story) and the presence of a vocal and well funded "resistance."

I have been completely surprised but definitely willing to accept it because it all seems to be leading to very positive results. Even on immigration, the booming economy will lead to the need for a lot more workers who can be admitted to the country in a legal way as opposed to a back door. Would one like to have Hillary Clinton and open borders, inept economic policies, judicial appointments that will reify abortion, more wars around the world, attacks on our police force countenanced from the Oval Office, an even more broken military, higher energy prices, a Russia that is even more threatening etc.

By the way this positive economy may all change as we can never know the future.

The attacks on Trump are nearly always completely unhinged and so are most of the articles on America criticizing Trump including this one. The typical ploy is to use the word "bishop" in a headline or some other irrelevant or false argument. Where are the Jesuits of old?

Jack Feehily
1 month ago

I’ve been a reader of America since the days many decades ago in which I was a liberal and a card carrying member of the democrat party. The magazine’s unswerving advocacy of nearly all things to the left of center certainly excludes support of abortion but it is clearly anti-Trump. At this point I could insert a long list of reasons that make me no fan of this president but among them would not be his firm stand against robbing unborn persons of the right to life. To put this trash Trump article in perspective, we might keep in mind the very small number of people who will read it. I continue to subscribe to America because it provides me with points of view I would otherwise not be exposed to. And I agree with many of those more “progressive” stances. But not this one.

Cassandra Ho
1 month ago

I disagree. I found his speech inspiring and historic and encouraging. We have been fighting for recognition from our lawmakers, we finally get our own president to embrace us, and I am sad to hear that for some of us that’s not encouraging. God willing, with our prayers and encouragement he will come all the way. We can’t sit around and wait for some imaginary perfect candidate or lawmaker, rejecting every offer of help and support for our cause in the meantime; he is in the position to advance our cause in a very real way and we should be cheering him on when he does the right thing, encouraging him to do more of the right thing where he falls short, and keep praying for him. This is what we have to work with, it will always be imperfect men/women in an imperfect system, but try to see the forest for the trees. I don’t like him, but give praise where it’s due. I feel the same way about much of the current leadership in our church; imperfect and lacking much of the time, but it’s what we have and you have to work with it and pray for them, be critical where necessary, but grateful when they do and say the right thing.

Also, I feel that it is disingenuous to apply the entirety of the pro-life issues to the March for Life. While being pro life touches on many issues, the March for Life is associated with and timed in January specifically because it is mourning the effects of Roe v. Wade, and while all the pro life issues are important the March is specifically aimed at ending abortion. Abortion is the most important issue in the fight for life, and there is a time and a place for addressing all the other related issues, but it is entirely appropriate for POTUS to speak directly about abortion at the March for Life, since that’s basically the point of the March. And I applaud him for doing so and hope he continues to do so, while following through on everything he sets out to accomplish in favor of the pro life cause. God works in wonderful ways through terrible people in history, and only with our support and prayers can we hope He also works through President Trump.

Stuart Meisenzahl
1 month ago

Ms Stewart
You postulate that unless one supports all of the isues you find under the umbrella of "Pro Life " then one is an unacceptable supporter of the ant-abortion movement.
So let's reverse the situation: Would you unapologetically reject President Obama ( or Hillary or Bernie) speaking at a march for open borders/Amnesty/citizenship for all 11 million illegal immigrants because he (they) actively espoused and supported the right to abortion at any time , including partial birth abortion ?
Why do I doubt it.

Tim Donovan
1 month ago

I was a registered Democrat from age 18 until about 5 years ago (I'm now 55). I briefly was a registered Independent, since neither major party represented my consistent ethic of life views. Several years ago I very reluctantly registered as a Republican, for the practical reason so that I could vote in primary elections. However, I still largely agree with policies typically held by Democrats. I favor stringent gun control laws, oppose capital punishment (for years, I 'vs been a pen pal with a man serving a sentence of life imprisonment), support reasonable laws to protect our environment, as well as reasonable government assistance to the millions of Americans need (among others, these include people who are disabled --I 'm a retired Special Education teacher -homeless, senior citizens, veterans, as well as those who are mentally ill, seriously ill, addicted to drugs, or physically or sexually abused). I also favor welcoming immigrants into our nation, and comprehensive immigration reform so that there's a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Also, I. believe that diplomatic efforts should first be pursued to resolve conflicts, with war being resorted to only as a last option. In my opinion, nuclear weapons should never be used, as they would result in unimaginable destruction and loss of life. Our government should also increase humanitarian assistance to foreign nations, both to assist impoverished people and build goodwill. Finally, I disagree with President Trump 's hostile attitude towards Muslims. From my experience knowing some Muslims,, and with reading an excellent book about Islam, I believe that most Muslims are good, peaceful people. The notable exception is ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) who according to many Muslim scholars, have seriously distorted the teachings of the Koran.
Although I am very disappointed that President Trump spoke to the attendees at the March for Life (of which I attended for many years), I just concede that in my opinion he has accomplished some worthwhile pro-life goals. Although I'm often dismissed as being a "single issue voter", so be i t. I do believe that the legal killing by abortion of almost one million innocent unborn human beings for any reason in our nation each year is the paramount human rights cause of our day. In any event, I think that many people are single issue voters. For instance, Emily's List is a powerful political action committee that only supports Democratic women who support legal abortion for any reason. Also, there are other people who are single issue voters regarding gun control (pro or con), environmental legislation (pro or con), immigration reform (people have different perspectives on how to best address this matter), and capital punishment (pro or con).

Kevin Murphy
1 month ago

Simple Trump-hatred, par for the course at America Magazine.

Genevieve Burns
1 month ago

This is a prototypical example of hate and TDS, trump derangement syndrome. America Mag is not a credible or unbiased Catholic periodical these days.

Barb Melland
1 month ago

I am shocked at the incredibly unChristian tone of this article. Mr. Trump has been the most prolife President in history. The only "scandal" here is the judgemental non fact based hate piece allowed to be published and presented as legitimate journalism. Thou shalt not bear false witness. This article would better fit into a gossip column.

Jason Widegren
4 weeks 1 day ago

I have rarely read anything so insightful and cogent! For all the reasons you point out, I think this was a big step backwards for the pro-life movement. Hypocrisy is never a good way to win hearts and minds.

James Haraldson
3 weeks 6 days ago

I won't comment on all your false witnessing, but it is a profound violation of the Eighth Commandment to claim Trump ridiculed people with disabilities. The claim is based on Trump unknowingly mocking a reporter, who happened to have a handicap that did not involve tremors. It was a gesture he performed with many reporters whenever they were trapped in a lie and had to take it back. The gesture was unconnected to the reporter's handicap, but it made propagandistic fodder for the soft-minded. Nonetheless, it is shameful to repeat it.
Incidentally, As a 45 year veteran of pro-life work, I'm ashamed that you're ashamed.

Chris Griffin
3 weeks 4 days ago

All five million unborn babies alive in America today can be killed tomorrow, legally and unstoppably, on the whim of their mothers.
This article has no case, no legitimacy and no moral vision.

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