WASHINGTON –Despite temperatures in the 20s and forecasts predicting a potentially historic blizzard, crowds gathered to hear speeches from politicians and religious leaders from a stage near the Washington Monument.
They started down Constitution Avenue just as snow began falling at 1 p.m. to head to the Supreme Court, where theMarch for Life has ended each of the last 43 years to mark the court’s Roe v. Wade decision recognizing a woman’s right to an abortion.
This year’s rally comes as Congress is trying to strip funding for Planned Parenthood and legislators in many states continue to try to chip away at abortion rights. The event also featured a decidedly younger face, with the march at times looking like a high school pep rally as much as it did a Washington protest on one of the most heated issues in politics.
“If we can’t stand up for life, how can we take care of anything else?” asked Kellie Taylor, director of student activities at St. Mary’s High School in Phoenix, which had 23 students at Friday’s march.
Taylor said the school has sent students to D.C. for more than a decade, and canceled classes Friday so students could also march in Phoenix and San Francisco. For senior Amanda Marvel, it was her second trip to the March for Life.
“It’s really important for youth to stand up,” Marvel said, adding that it is all too easy for young people to promise to do so “one day.”
While she was overwhelmed by the crowds last year, she said she was encouraged by the number of young faces, which she said helped make her more confident in her pro-life beliefs.