March For Life 2012

Hello everyone! I made this video on the March For Life. The whole event was filled with love, joy, and hope, and I have no doubt it will change a number of hearts, despite the inability of the mainstream media to give it proper coverage.

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Let us cherish life and protect it, all the days of our lives. Please share with friends and family, especially those who have a distorted view of the pro-life movement.

  • http://biltrix.com/ Chip

    Awesome work, Mark, as always. Sure to make an impact. Keep up the fabulous work!

    • http://biltrix.com/ Chip

      Sorry, I meant to say, Marc. My bad.

  • http://tonyescobar.org/ Tony Escobar

    Excellent video! The rebellion continues, all year round!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1640074522 Joseph Jablonski

    Wonderful that you were there! I have followed your request on facebook and have reblogged your video. Keep the great posts coming! Love, the folks at Catholic U http://gaudiumdei.blogspot.com/#!/2012/01/love-them-both-pro-life-march.html

  • BorisG

    Excellent!…please pray that we can do as well here Down Under.

  • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

    What makes you think that we have a distorted view of the pro-life movement?

    I think we on the side of life, choice, and respect for the individual human conscience, have a horrifyingly clear view of what the pro-life movement is about – much clearer than those of you trapped in the middle of the mess that lets you think it appropriate to compare women to farm animals, to declare a pregnancy by a rape a “gift” to the rapist’s victim, and still believe this is a movement about “love, joy, and hope”.

    • Faith

      Oh come on, when you have to twist things so stupidly, it just makes your position look very weak (which it is! No wonder.) You’re arguing like my 10 year old, pulling things out of context and then putting a ludicrously slanted take on it that anybody with an ounce of intellectual honesty would recognize in a second. Silly game.

      • Alexandra

        Perhaps you do not recognize the fact that people looking at this blog from the outside, ie non Catholics, do see Marc as equating human life with the life of farm animals. And a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions with those of a cow’s.

        It’s not a twisting of facts, it’s a simple statement of what it looks like.

        • http://www.facebook.com/kickintheface Jacob Timothy Michael Hughes

          The farthest the comparison to cows goes is just that they both bear children. He/she either did not read the post in question, just saw the words “cow” and “woman” and ran with it, or he/she deliberately took it out of context.

          • Alexandra

            Believe what you want to, but it is not silly to think that someone could read that post and think, wow, did Marc just compare human life to cows?

            If you want to be taken seriously, it’s important to not throw around things that can be that easily misinterpreted.

          • Faith

            If you truly thought that he was comparing women to cows in that funny exchange then you have no ability for reading comprehension nor do you have a sense humor. He was drawing out the fact that the young lady he was talking to was more upset over killing a calf in utero than a baby of her own species. She noticed this too and had to disavow her loyalty to her own species in order to cover herself for being so stupid.

            Really, when you start whining and exaggerating things to defend yourself, you weaken your own arguments. Better to say nothing at all then to try to argue with such self-righteous imbecility. Makes me think of that old line from Lincoln: Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought stupid, then to open it and prove it.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            Thank you! Anyone who though Marc was comparing women to cows was either willfully misinterpreting his argument, or needs to seriously re-evaluate their education. Someone who makes a perfectly clear analogy and points out another person’s flawed argument is not responsible for other people frankly bizarre interpretations of his point.

          • Alexandra

            That whole post was distasteful anyway. Marc was setting himself up to be unlikeable in that he posted about a conversation he had on a date. Classy.

          • Marc Barnes

            haha, distasteful I can deal with. I certainly do say stupid things and make bad comparisons ALL THE TIME. I’m not sure this was one of them, but I’ll certainly think twice before posting anything similar. Thanks for reading/watching, and don’t feel offended that I disagree with your beliefs wholeheartedly — c’est a vie and all that. ( :

          • Penny Farthing1893

            Thank you! Anyone who though Marc was comparing women to cows was either willfully misinterpreting his argument, or needs to seriously re-evaluate their education. Someone who makes a perfectly clear analogy and points out another person’s flawed argument is not responsible for other people frankly bizarre interpretations of his point.

        • Penny Farthing1893

          Then perhaps those readers should settle down, stop assuming Marc is a hysterical zealot, and actually read his argument all the way through. Perhaps a course on basic logic would be in order too, since his analogy with the cow was very clear. It had nothing to do with the moral agency or lack thereof of a cow or a woman. It was about the hypocrisy of someone who was upset over the killing of baby cows but not baby humans.

          • Alexandra

            Well, he kind of is a zealot.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            Well, maybe, but he’s a zealot who’s very good at explaining what he means :)

          • Alexandra

            Yeah, but mostly I think you’re dismissing the fact that a lot of people may pass through here and just read the posts cursorily. That post was set up to make Marc look pretty judgmental and less than gentlemanly. Why would you bring up abortion on a first date in the same conversation as veal? And then post about it on your blog?

            It seemed callous and a bit like he was making light of the issue of abortion, if you didn’t actually bother to read it thoroughly. That kind of thing does make the pro-life movement look bad.

          • Tally Marx

            Mark said somewhere in the comments that it wasn’t exactly a date. Just sayin’.

          • Fisherman

            We’re called to be zealots.

        • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

          Well, yes.

          Also, I thought Marc was being kind of a dick to/about the girl.

          I was working on a blog about abortion / prolifers for National Holocaust Memorial Day, so I was taking a quick check of prolife blogs for anything to link to.

    • Hannah Ohmes

      Mr EdinburghEye:

      I don’t know what is in your heart on this issue, so I’m just going to respond to your arguments.

      First of all, I respect your respect for the individual human conscience. But sadly, at least in the west, the individual human conscience is greatly under-developed. The presence of gun and metal detectors in schools, to keep children from killing other children; the plethora of hate crimes; and the presence of road rage are all examples that the current individual human conscience is lacking.

      Secondly, Marc was not comparing women to farm animals. He was showing the hypocrisy of a person who thought killing baby cows was horrible, but killing baby humans was not.

      Thirdly, rape is a detestable, violent crime against women. Therefore it is believed that to have a child from rape is also a terrible thing. But in interviews made with rape victims, both those who had abortions and those who decided to keep their child, the women who kept the babies said the trauma and pain from the rape faded and receded in their memories, while the women who chose abortion said the rape remained horrible and traumatizing and some compared the abortion to a second rape. (http://www.feministsforlife.org/FFL_topics/victory/2ndrape.htm)
      I myself personally know two children of rape, and they both are beautiful, strong women, who are a blessing to those around them.

      So yes, I believe that to be for life is to be for love, joy and hope.

      • http://twitter.com/EyeEdinburgh EdinburghEye

        “I don’t know what is in your heart on this issue, so I’m just going to respond to your arguments.”

        I don’t think my comment is really an argument, it’s more of a statement. I see some really horrible disrespect and cruelty towards women among prolifers – Marc’s sadly not even the first pro-lifer I’ve seen arguing as if women are cows to be bred, and a doctor who performs an abortion at a woman’s urgent request acting like a farmer.

        My heart is solidly with each and every pregnant woman who has to make the decision to terminate. I respect her right of reason and conscience.

        “the women who kept the babies said the trauma and pain from the rape faded and receded in their memories”

        I can imagine this could be so for some women. Every woman who is the victim of a violent assault has the right to decide for herself how best to deal with it, and I will always respect and support a rape vic’s choice.

        Unlike prolifers, who apparently regard a raped woman as animal that’s now been bred, who will just naturally “forget” the rapist in the comfort of having her calf.

        • Tally Marx

          “I stand by her right of reason an conscience.”

          Perhaps pro-lifers aren’t the only ones with clouded vision. You apparently cannot see irony and contradiction in your own views. There are two human beings involved in every abortion: a woman and her offspring. Funny how you can acklowedge killing a two month old born human as a violent, indecent act, but killing an eight month old unborn human is just an act of conscience.

          • Alexandra

            I’m sorry but how often do you think people get abortions at 8 months?

            Late term abortions are only legal in extreme cases. The overwhelming majority of abortions are done while still in the embryonic stage.

            Pro-choicers are not rooting for killing viable fetuses, nor to all of them find late term abortions ethical. No one is arguing that it is a good idea to have an abortion past the point of viability.

          • Tally Marx

            I used eight months, but it could be however old. Two weeks, two moths, two days. It is a human individual from the moment of conception, and that is a biological fact. Killing a human individual is killing a human individual, period, and it makes no sense to focus solely on one human involved to the exclusion of the other (and that goes both ways). I can’t read skinny comments, so if you wish to reply please do so under my original comment.

          • Mari

            It’s a woman’s decision. Her body her choice. Simple as that. You shouldn’t be able to tell me I can’t have an abortion no more then I should be able to stop you from cutting your hair. It’s a callous metaphor but your body belongs to you. No one should force me to carry a child if I don’t want to. And even if the law changes women are still going to seek abortions. They will just be forced to see unfit doctors in unhealthy environments.

          • Tally Marx

            Mari, let’s say there is a set of conjoined twins, A and B.  A is very tired of being stuck to B and opts for a surgery to have them separated.  The docs say that B is too weak to survive the surgery, but in nine months will be strong enough to undergo the separation.  Would it be right for A to insist on the operation now knowing that it will kill her twin?  No.  So, while I agree that a woman can do whatever she wants with her body, we can’t ignore the fact that it is not her body that is being ripped to pieces in an abortion.  You can do whatever you want with your body *except* hurt other people’s bodies: that’s how it should go, and that standard applies to everything *except* abortion.  It makes no sense. (If you wish to reply, please do so under my first comment, as I can’t read skinny comments)

          • Lily

            I love you for this analogy! I’m totally using it in the future, since any analogy concerning non-humans is (sadly) misunderstood (though jut wait, someone will find a way to be offended by comparing a woman and her baby to conjoined twins. And I will weep for that person).

          • Jake

            You are only forced to carry a child in the extremely rare case of rape. Any other time you were part of the action that placed the child in your womb therefore incurring a moral responsibility to at least give said human a chance at life.

          • char

            And that is the real reason you are pro life. To punish women for leading a sexually active life in accordance with their desires. That is why the pro life scene is dominated by men. Pathetic.

          • Alexandra

            The skinny columns are horrible!

            I don’t actually have anything to add beyond that.

    • HappyDad

      Glad you continue to read Marc’s blog

    • Alessij66

      Mr. EdinburghEye:

      I am praying for you in hopes that you may be enlightened to the fact that a fetus is human. You contradict yourself when you say that you are on the side of choice and respect for the human conscience. You deny the person inside the womb the right to use their conscience and make their own decision. You deny that person to tell us what he wants, what his conscience- untainted by the devils of society- would choose. I do not know who was comparing women to farm animals but when you say that it is okay to kill a person you compare that baby to a pig in a slaughterhouse. Also of a baby of rape is a gift. Isn’t every baby a gift? If you do not believe that than i sincerely hope that you never have children. I know i wouldn’t want my parents to think of me as anything other than a gift. My sister’s rape experience taught me that the cure to the traumatic effects of a rape is love. Love is shared constantly and in amazing quantities by babies and their mothers. Having that child could only help a victim of rape.

      The american Holocaust will end and it will end by the end of my generation’s reign. I promise you that.

      “I notice that everyone who is pro-choice has already been born.” Reagan

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=565773754 Erica Alessi

      Mr. EdinburghEye:

      I am praying for you in hopes that you may be enlightened to the fact that a fetus is human. You contradict yourself when you say that you are on the side of choice and respect for the human conscience. You deny the person inside the womb the right to use their conscience and make their own decision. You deny that person to tell us what he wants, what his conscience- untainted by the devils of society- would choose. I do not know who was comparing women to farm animals but when you say that it is okay to kill a person you compare that baby to a pig in a slaughterhouse. Also of a baby of rape is a gift. Isn’t every baby a gift? If you do not believe that than i sincerely hope that you never have children. I know i wouldn’t want my parents to think of me as anything other than a gift. My sister’s rape experience taught me that the cure to the traumatic effects of a rape is love. Love is shared constantly and in amazing quantities by babies and their mothers. Having that child could only help a victim of rape.

      The american Holocaust will end and it will end by the end of my generation’s reign. I promise you that.

      “I notice that everyone who is pro-choice has already been born.” Reagan

  • http://twitter.com/nugzthepirate Kendra Schroeder

    fantastic video, Marc!

  • Dolce

    This was amazing!! So inspiring! I can’t wait to finally take part in March for Life Canada! :D

    To the guy below me – yes you do have a distorted view. And considering you are the ones who treat every single human being (EVERY one of them) in the earliest and most vulnerable times in their lives as disposable, I don’t think you can say that your side is about LIFE (you kill indiscriminately any human who doesn’t fit your idea of an ideal baby), CHOICE (those small unborn humans never have any choice to live or die, everything is taken away from them), or RESPECT for the individual human conscience (respect for conscience involves recognizing a crime when you see one and correcting it, imo).

    • Alexandra

      I’m always so saddened by how much hate there is between people on this issue. As a woman, I can never agree with a law that would take away my right to make my own medical decisions, and as a scientist I do not believe that independent human life begins are conception.

      I heard a very interesting thought experiment recently that I wanted to share.

      You believer abortion should be illegal, correct?
      At the moment, the only abortion freely available without restrictions is during the first 20ish weeks.
      If it was illegal to have an early term abortion, then what should the punishment be for women who have one?
      If it abortion is murder, shouldn’t it be life in prison?
      If a woman murders her children does go to prison for the rest of her life.
      On some level, you probably don’t really think a woman who has an abortion deserves to go to prison for the rest of her life. Perhaps do you not really believe that abortion is murder? Perhaps it is a different moral issue to terminate the development of an embryo that is dependent on her body for survival than it is to murder an independent life.

      The idea that life begins at conception is a purely religious idea. It does not make any scientific sense. As long as the separation of church and state remains in this country, we will not take away a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions. Abortion will never be a legal crime in a developed nation that values a woman’s right to control her own body.

      I can see where you morally think it is a sin, but calling it murder is so hurtful and judgmental of woman and does nothing but spread hate.

      Just a thought.

      • Fisherman

        As a women, I find it hateful and judgmental that you disregard human life under the guise of an already corrupt judicial system. Of course a women does not deserve a life sentence for murder. No one does. What they need is love, forgiveness, and counseling. God bless you and keep you.

      • Cindy Morales

        Dear Alexandra:

        Are you freaking kidding me? What kind of “scientist” are you? It is, beyond any discussion, and a scientific fact that a new life begins at conception. Complete with its own DNA. A fact found in any 9th grade biology textbook. True, the new life is dependent on its mother for nurturing, but that doesn’t mean it is not a separate and new life. Newborns are also totally dependent, are they not? And that new little life didn’t just magically appear there….the woman did something very specific to get it there. Which brings me to my second point:
        If women REALLY controlled their own bodies, they would have any “unintended” pregnancy in the first place. Babies are what happens when sex goes right, not when it goes wrong. The idea that you can have baby free sex is the unscientific (and stupid) idea that needs to be thrown in the trash (not babies). Third, abortion is murder. period. But women who have had them, even in the bad ole pre Roe v. Wade days, were never prosecuted (the doctors were). This is because everyone recognizes that women do not get abortions because it is their “choice” but because they feel they HAVE no choice. So many women are coerced into abortion by their parents, their boyfriends or husbands, it’s ridiculous.

        Finally pregnancy is not a disease. Abortion is not health care. It is not medicine. It is destruction of a human life and antithetical to true medicine, which is all ABOUT healing.

        • Alexandra

          Rage all you want, but it’s important to challenge yourself and your convictions. I’m not asking for an argument as to why you think I’m wrong, I’m just pointing out that it’s important to re-frame things sometimes.

          If you can’t fully understand my arguments you should take the time to explore them, instead of calling them stupid.

      • Semcsem

        Yes, a woman who chooses to kill her own children should (and does) go to prison–for life if nexessary. Perhaps if we were to treat the crime as it should be treated, the seriousness of the “choice” being made would finally hit home.

        However, the reality is that in all of the discussion about “rights” there is no discussion about how we do NOT have the right to do something that can harm another–period. That’s basic law.

        Also, you say that life from conception onward makes no scientific sense, yet the current idea that an embryo (will use your terminology here) suddenly becomes a real person at 20 weeeks, does? Where’s the logic and scientific method in that? Either life is created from the very beginning, or not, and genetically, SCIENTIFICALLY, that reality is upheld by all studies and tests that have been done in this area.

        Finally, there is no hate here. Rather, sadness that you presume that how you wish to live “your” life should supercede anyone else’s regardless of what you “choose” to do. There is no “right” to kill someone else written in any of our nation’s founding documents, rather, it is a right to “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.” May you find peace.

        • Alexandra

          I’m at peace actually, so there’s that.

      • Dolce

        First off – in today’s climate, where abortion is accepted and lauded by a large amount of our media and is currently legal and praised by your president, sending women to life in prison is simply not feasible. Once abortion is seen for the horror that it is, this becomes more realistic.

        Once abortion is no longer seen as a reasonable option, once it is no longer seen as necessary by anyone with half a brain, and once the humanity of the unborn is broadly acknowledged, then we can properly prosecute those who commit it unnecessarily and with full knowledge of what they do.

        In the meantime, the focus is on changing hearts and minds, advocating for the beauty of pregnancy and the availability of other options besides abortion, reaching out to women who have committed abortion in forgiveness and understanding, and changing the law so that abortionists are put out of business.

      • Anonymous

        So, as a scientist you have a definition for life? As someone who studied as a scientist myself, I remember this definition was often under flux (so as to not include too much or too little). In general “Living organisms undergo metabolism, maintain homeostasis, possess a capacity to grow, respond to stimuli, reproduce and, through natural selection, adapt to their environment in successive generations.” (wiki – life).

        Then it becomes a clear question.
        Does a human embryo undergo metabolism? Yes.
        Does it maintain homeostasis? Yes.
        Does it possess a capacity to grow? Yes.
        Does it respond to stimuli? Yes.

        The last two are for quantifying a species of life – of which embryos are a part of by their DNA. However, the embryo is NOT the mother’s body, which has different DNA. It is independent of the mother in the sense that it is NOT the mother’s life that dies (usually) in an abortion.

        So scientifically the embryo is a living organism.

        • Alexandra

          I said independent human life.

          An embryo is completely dependent on the mother’s body for life.

          • http://biltrix.com/ Chip

            It’s not dependent per se on the mother’s body. That’s why it can survive in an incubator after five or six months of gestation. Before that p0int, it’s life is not the life of the mother. It has it’s own heartbeat. Yes it does depend on the mother’s body for nutrients and protection, but a new born baby does not get far on its own support from a nurturing mother.

          • http://biltrix.com/ Chip

            misfire…. does not get far without support from a nurturing mother.

          • Paula

            Dear Alexandra,

            In your early stages of existence, you, too, were dependent on your mother’s body for life. Why, if I may so bold as to ask, is it okay that you got a shot a life outside of the womb but you don’t want others to get that same opportunity? Who are we (you or I or the government or anyone) to make that choice for someone else?

            I think Gandalf sums things up rather nicely:

            “It was pity that stayed Bilbo’s hand. Many that live deserve death. Some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them, Frodo? Do not be too eager to deal out death in judgment. Even the very wise cannot see all ends.”

          • Alexandra

            You know it is estimated that 60% of fertilized eggs don’t implant or are spontaneously aborted before the woman even realizes she’s pregnant?

            Embryos really aren’t that special. Before it enters the fetal stage it’s just a sperm and egg that combined. Sure it could become a human if biology is in it’s favor and the mother decides she wants to grow a baby, but an embryo is not a human life.

            For someone that doesn’t believe in a deity, there just isn’t an argument that it should be illegal to remove the growing embryo from her body.

            I get your moral convictions, and understand why you stick to them, but it is a religious view and it will never become law.

          • Paula

            Dear Alexandra,

            May I borrow a term of yours and ask if we could “re-frame” the way we look at an embryo?

            We often look at the embryo in a start-to-finish fashion, but what if looked at it from the end-point and worked backwards in time instead?

            Consider that a baby after 9 months of pregnancy is born into a child whom we would never consider killing outside of the womb. Well, hours before, while the mother was in labor, was that baby any different inside the womb than outside? No, he/she wasn’t. Keep going back in time and the logic follows that what pro-choicers term an “embryo/unfeeling blob of cells” is actually nothing other than the primary stage of a mature human being. It is a person from start to finish. There is never a point in the developmental process where the embryo morphs from a different species into a human being. If it is human at the end-point, it must be human at the starting-point, too. Therefore, the fetus’ *substance* as a human being remains the same from beginning (conception) to end (death).

          • Alexandra

            That’s not really what re-framing is, but nice try.

          • Paula

            reframe: 3. to look at, present, or think of (beliefs, ideas, relationships, etc.) in a new or different way
            [from http://www.thefreedictionary.com

          • Alexandra

            I guess we disagree on that point of whether or not that was new or different.

          • Paula

            Dear Alexandra,

            Is not my perspective
            that an embryo is a living human being who is simply in the early stage of development *different* from your view that
            “[e]mbryos really aren’t that special. Before it enters the fetal stage it’s just a sperm and egg that combined. Sure it could become a human if biology is in it’s favor and the mother decides she wants to grow a baby, but an embryo is not a human life.”

            p.s. I appreciate the civility with which you have been replying — I do not often encounter this. Thank you!

          • Paula

            reframe: 3. to look at, present, or think of (beliefs, ideas, relationships, etc.) in a new or different way
            [from http://www.thefreedictionary.com

          • Alexandra

            It’s not really re-framing to me because I do acknowledge that it is the early stages of a human being. I just don’t assign the same worth to it that pro-lifers do.

            I value a woman’s right to not be forced to carry an embryo to term.

            Whether or not you agree with the morality of abortion, I think you can probably recognize that societies that value women as equal humans instead of baby making incubators does better overall. Pregnancy has been used to control women. If a woman is pregnant she’s no longer just one person and having to grow a person she doesn’t want and then raise it is incredibly confining.

            A society that gives women the right to decide whether or not they will have children is one that values her as an independent person. Not getting pregnant is not so simple as abstinence and NFP. We’re not perfect, and sometimes we have mistakes. Requiring a woman to pay for that mistake that two people made places an unequal burden on women. The pro-choicer’s point of view is that it is more important to support women’s right to not have a pregnancy they don’t want than it is to mandate that they cannot terminate an embryo.

          • Paula

            I’m curious, then. If you agree that the embryo is a human life (albeit from your point of view, if I understand correctly, a life worth less than that of the mother), how do you interpret: “[w]e hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed…with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are *Life*, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”?
            [the emphasis on "Life" in the quotation from the Declaration is mine.]

          • Alexandra

            I’m sorry, I hate these skinny columns, so I’m replying up here.

            I interpret in light of the context. First off it says all men are created equal, which certainly doesn’t imply that we shouldn’t give women or children those rights. I interpret it knowing that the founding fathers were deists with a strong sense of that importance of a secular nation.

            The Supreme Court has interpreted the Constitution to give lots of rights that aren’t explicitly spelled out in there. The Justices being people who have studied the context of the writing of the Constitution and about justice in general extensively.

            Societies that don’t condemn women for having abortions and provide them with the tools that they need to not have unwanted pregnancies in the first place do not suffer for having given women the right to chose whether or not they will have an abortion. It isn’t an issue that causes moral depravity, indeed it makes crime rates drop.

            I’m glad you are taking the time to have this conversation with me! In learning more about atheism and speaking to theists I’ve realized how much we’ve got each other all wrong. We both do what we do and believe what we do out passion for the better good. We might come to entirely opposite conclusions as to what is good, but I think it’s so important to understand why people come to the conclusions that they do so that you can see them for the good people that they are instead of random raging opposition.

          • Paula

            I agree about the skinny columns! I’ll post my next reply under the one you wrote earlier beginning with “I said independent human life.”

          • Anonymous

            Now here you need to define “independent”. Do you mean it is dependent as my finger is dependent? Or dependent as a bacteria is dependent? In one case the life of the cells are part of the life of the larger organism. They do not maintain independent metabolism, independent homeostasis, independent capacity for growth or an independent response to stimuli.

            Yet an embryo does. It’s environment is the woman’s body, and it is dependent upon that environment, yet it’s biological processes are independent from her body. It can thrive while her body starves, it can grow, even after she is dead, and it can respond to the state of her body (there are some fascinating studies on how famine when someone was an embryo has changed the way they prepare to encounter the world).

            As far as organisms go, it is an independent organism dependent upon it’s environment. Yet all of us are dependent upon our environment.

          • Paula

            I’m full of questions! I hope you’ll forgive my curiosity. I’ve heard some pro-choicers express the position that abortion is never the *desired* choice, only one that *has* to be made in dire circumstances. How do you feel about abortion on demand? That is, is abortion really an okay choice when the only reason it is sought is because the mother (and/or father) doesn’t feel like having a kid at that point in their life? If so, can this be called justice?

            Also, I think we can both agree that poverty plays a key role in why many women seek abortions. I know the Catholic Church (and other Christian churches) run crisis pregnancy centers where they take care of a woman’s material needs (e.g. free ultrasounds and pre-natal care, daycare once the baby is born, etc.) in order to lessen/eliminate the financial difficulties which may come with carrying her pregnancy to term. How would you feel about the government backing such organizations (without requiring them to change their no-abortion/no-contraception policies)? Because, ideally, neither one of us (I’m assuming you’ll agree, but feel free to express otherwise!) *wants* women to get abortions. If the main cause which drives a woman to get an abortion is poverty and this can be solved by a crisis pregnancy center, shouldn’t everyone be gung-ho about supporting these institutions?

            p.s. I am grateful to be having this conversation with you, too!

            p.p.s. Full disclosure: I’m a practicing Catholic. Also, I appear in the video Marc posted above (2:25-2:30).

          • Alexandra

            First I have a question for you!

            Most contraception does not actually prevent implantation, just ovulation. I understand why the Catholic Church teaches that contraception is not a good choice, but I don’t understand why Catholics would see it as important that non Catholics did not use contraception. Do you have any insight for me as to why Catholics don’t encourage the sexually active to use contraception?

            Access to reliable contraception is the best way to prevent unwanted pregnancies, and keep women from needing to have abortions. It seems like encouraging women to prevent unwanted pregnancy but giving them the knowledge that we do it differently and the way we do it is correct is a better approach.

            I think that getting an abortion when you are pregnant do not want to have a child is the responsible thing to do. It’s not just the pregnancy that you’re deciding not to go through with, it is also parenthood. Parenthood is a huge deal, and no child deserves to have parents that didn’t fully want to become parents. To me, having an abortion is an unselfish act. It is recognizing that you are not capable of being the parent you should be, and won’t do that to a child.

            I very firmly believe that the state should not fund anything faith based. I’m really proud of Obama for stepping up and not allowing religious objections to contraceptive use influence public policy that requires businesses to provide adequate health insurance. Fundamentally I’m an atheist, and I think that all religions are wrong and lead good people to support the wrong things because of their good intentions. The government should not support religions in anyway because I believe that for as much good as religion can and does do, it often leads to really bad things.

          • Tally Marx

            Contraceptives would be a concern for society at large because they dump estrogen into our water, funky-fy fish, cause cancer, destroy the lining of the uterus and cause infertility, mess with the hormones that make relationships stable, and were created for the purpose of eugenics.

            Getting an abortion is not responsible. Responsible is facing the repercussions of your actions; yes, even if that means carrying a baby to term. Bringing a baby to term does not necessarily imply parenthood. Please don’t paint out abortion to be merciful to the child, either. While I can understand the logic, it is very flawed and I think you can see that as clearly as I. “I’m not a good parent, so I will kill my offspring,” is hardly acceptable when the offspring are three years or three weeks old. You say the embryo is a human individual, but you think it is worth less, I know. But that makes no sense, either. *Why* are they worth less? Because the mother doesn’t want them? -Since when is the value of an individual based on the price tag someone else sticks on them? Because they can’t protest? -Since when does might really make right?
            Because they are made and die naturally at a higher rate than others? -So do people with DS and spinabifeda and cancer. Are these human individuals worth less than the rest of us? Since when does “they have a high chance of dying anyway” make “let’s kill them” okay? Any differentiating between the value of an embryo, a fetus, a born child, and an adult is purely arbitrary. Therefore, if killing your kid is not a responsible or merciful or acceptable option if that kid is 2 weeks out of the womb, it shouldn’t be considered one when it is 2 weeks in the womb. Religion has got nothing to do with it. Human reason, logic, consistency, and human good dictates this. And there are pro-life atheists.

          • Alexandra

            You can disagree, but that doesn’t make my view point wrong.

          • Tally Marx

            That comment wasn’t about me disagreeing. It was about the faulty logic which led you, Alex, to your conclusion. Agree or disagree, your reasoning remains inconsistent. And the value of human life and our obligation to respect it is not a view point or a matter of opinion…unless you’re Hitler, of course.

          • Alexandra

            After watching your bit in the video, I wanted to say yeah you’re right it is a baby and you shouldn’t kill it 48 hrs before birth. Abortion is only legal until viability, ~20th week. It’s legal afterwards in special cases, but of course it’s always sad and no one wants to be in those places.

            Ideally I think no one should have an abortion after 12 weeks, but I don’t think it should be illegal after that. I just wish we were a society that made it easier for a woman to not have unwanted pregnancies in the first place and that abortion was more accessible so that it could always be done before the end of the first trimester.

          • Paula

            Dear Alexandra,

            I’m sorry it’s taken me a while to get back to you — I’m a teacher (Latin and French) so my schedule is centered around the school day. Anyhow, good question! Although we (Catholics) are well aware that we cannot force others to adhere to our moral code (and appreciate it in return when the government doesn’t force us to compromise our beliefs!), that doesn’t mean the teachings which the Church upholds don’t *apply* to everyone (whether Catholic or not). Here’s our take: there is objective (and knowable) Truth. It is not subject to the individual’s opinion, it stands separate from those who accept it (and those who don’t). The Truth applies to everyone, to those who acknowledge it as such *and* to those who don’t, precisely because it *is* objective and *not* subjective. Therefore, when the Church says that no one (even non-Catholics) should use contraception, it’s not so much that she is over-stepping her boundaries as it is that she is really following through on her understanding that our moral code (which is derived from the Truth) really does pertain to everyone.

            I don’t know if my explanation is clear — I’m not very philosophically-/theologically-inclined so I’m certain others could do a better job at elucidating the nature of objective Truth.

            But, back to the matter at hand, as I mentioned, we understand religious liberty (and are grateful for it!) so it’s not like there are Catholics (at least not normal ones) going into pharmacies and stores and tearing apart the aisle with contraceptives.

            As for government funding for faith-based programs, believe it or not, I sort of agree with you that the government should not provide money to faith-based programs — but I agree for a different reason than you: I’d rather not have a cent from the government if it means we have to compromise our faith in order to receive funding.

            I know that it’s big news (at least in Catholic circles) this week about our President’s unwillingness to respect the conscience clause with the latest bout of health care reform. I can’t help but wonder… if Catholic organizations (e.g. soup kitchens, immigration centers, hospitals, pregnancy and adoption centers, relief services etc.) actually stick to their guns and don’t comply with the reforms (despite the penalties they’ll incur), how many citizens of our nation will feel the negative repercussions? I read somewhere that 1 in 6 people is served by a Catholic hospital… if the hospital is forced to shut down because of a lack of funding (brought about by the hospital’s attempt to maintain its Catholic identity) or it can now only accept Catholic patients, there will be a lot of people who won’t have a place to turn for help. What I mean to say is this: Catholic (and other religious) institutions serve this country in countless, far-reaching ways — is it really in anyone’s interest to stop them from operating on their own terms when, if they are forced to stop operating at all, so many citizens will be adversely affected?

      • Ladeancrms

        it would make more sense to punish the abortionist

      • Penny Farthing1893

        Wow. Life beginning at conception is unscientific? Then what would you call an organism with its own unique DNA, of the species homo sapiens, that takes in nutrients, reproduces its cells, grows, responds to stimuli, etc. If nothing intervenes it will be born as a human. Now, from a scientific perspective, surely you aren’t saying that some spiritual thing happens later that “makes” an organism a human being, are you? Surely human nature, scientifically speaking, consists of human DNA, which gives us our behavior and physical characteristics, and which we have as soon as the sperm fertilizes the egg. So human life beginning at conception is the only way a scientist can explain it. Various religions have at various times believed that the soul enters the body at a later time, but pure science must define the human animal’s existence as beginning at conception. If you have another definition for human, or can tell me when the switch gets flipped turns it into one, let’s hear it. From there it’s just a matter of determining which types of humans have rights and which don’t. Science has does a fine job of figuring this one out, I must say, especially in the 20th century, and usually uses abortion and sterilization as its tools for sorting the types of humans out…

        Or perhaps we could be very liberal (classical liberal, that is) and say that the circumstances of ones life, age, or ability should not detract from ones rights, or give anyone special rights. If you want to argue that having someone’s life depend on you gives you the right to kill that person, be my guest – there have been societies throughout history with that concept of a life debt. But at least admit that that is the “right” you are demanding women be given.

        Which brings me to your question about what should happen to women who have abortions. I say it’s at least manslaughter, and should be treated as such, but I do think murder is more accurate. One could argue emotional distress in hopes of lightening the sentence, but killing a human is killing a human. Even if that human is young. Or black, or gay, or old, or handicapped (all of which science has advocated within the last 70 years) or a girl, or poor. Your “thought experiment” is nothing but an appeal to emotion, so that’s all the response I’m going to give it.

        And your last paragraph was nothing but an ad hominem attack. This discussion will never get anywhere until logical fallacies and invalid arguments are removed from the debate.

        • Alexandra

          It’s not an emotional appeal, it’s a way to reveal what it is you actually value.

          And this isn’t a discussion that needs to go anywhere. It’s not going to. You’re never going to be convinced that it’s not killing of a human being, and I’m never going to be convinced that there isn’t a huge moral difference between an early term abortion and homicide.

          You can choose to not respond to whatever you want to, but don’t pretend that this is some kind of a debate.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            But you didn’t explain how a scientist specifically wouldn’t think life begins at conception. If it’s not then, you must be able to explain how and/or when it does occur. Any time you set is arbitrary, but at least defend it. Or else don’t go calling us un-scientific and dismissing the belief that life begins at conception as just a religious one, unless you can offer a scientific alternative. That was my main point. Saying an argument can’t get anywhere is the same as conceding, especially when the other party is offering you an opportunity to clarify your position.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            But you didn’t explain how a scientist specifically wouldn’t think life begins at conception. If it’s not then, you must be able to explain how and/or when it does occur. Any time you set is arbitrary, but at least defend it. Or else don’t go calling us un-scientific and dismissing the belief that life begins at conception as just a religious one, unless you can offer a scientific alternative. That was my main point. You still haven’t addressed it, so maybe you haven’t though about it.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            But you didn’t explain how a scientist specifically wouldn’t think life begins at conception. If it’s not then, you must be able to explain how and/or when it does occur. Any time you set is arbitrary, but at least defend it. Or else don’t go calling us un-scientific and dismissing the belief that life begins at conception as just a religious one, unless you can offer a scientific alternative. That was my main point. You still haven’t addressed it, so maybe you haven’t though about it.

          • Penny Farthing1893

            But you didn’t explain how a scientist specifically wouldn’t think life begins at conception. If it’s not then, you must be able to explain how and/or when it does occur. Any time you set is arbitrary, but at least defend it. Or else don’t go calling us un-scientific and dismissing the belief that life begins at conception as just a religious one, unless you can offer a scientific alternative. That was my main point. You still haven’t addressed it, so maybe you haven’t though about it.

      • Bobby Fresh

        The only flaw in this is that the mother doesn’t kill the child, it is the one who performs the abortion. I would assume the person who performs the abortion would have the charge of murder and maybe the mother would be charged as accomplice?

        You are attempting to devalue the life of another. We used to do that in this country with slavery. We denied them liberty and the pursuit of happiness. They weren’t seen as fully human. They were only 3/5 human.

        Now, the argument has changed that a baby/fetus/embryo, which are all alive, isn’t fully human until such and such a point. Perhaps 3/5 through the pregnancy they become “human”? We are now denying these unborn children life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

      • Bobby Fresh

        The only flaw in this is that the mother doesn’t kill the child, it is the one who performs the abortion. I would assume the person who performs the abortion would have the charge of murder and maybe the mother would be charged as accomplice?

        You are attempting to devalue the life of another. We used to do that in this country with slavery. We denied them liberty and the pursuit of happiness. They weren’t seen as fully human. They were only 3/5 human.

        Now, the argument has changed that a baby/fetus/embryo, which are all alive, isn’t fully human until such and such a point. Perhaps 3/5 through the pregnancy they become “human”? We are now denying these unborn children life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

  • Antônio

    I was there in the March for Life, and this video shows very well the wonderful experience I had there! Thank you! God bless you!

  • Jay E.

    Hurray for massive awesomeness!!! That is, half a million people massive awesomeness!! WOOT! Yes, thanks for putting out this video, especially given the almost complete lack of coverage from the media. :D Keep on being awesome and Pro-life Marc!

  • Fisherman

    Great video Marc! I especially liked all the memes.

  • JDog

    Dear EdinburghEye, One of the stories that changed my heart was my friend Phyllis who I was in a women’s group with. I knew her when she was in her late 50′s & had just gotten married for the first time. She shared with me that she was raped & had gotten pregnant as a result of that rape. She chose to keep the baby, she raised her daughter alone as a single mom, later she married a wonderful man. When I knew her her daughter was having her own babies so she became a grandmother. She was so filled with love for her daughter, her grandchildren and for life itself. God can create good from bad situations. This is one of the stories that changed my heart. I am blessed that my parents chose to get married when my mom found out she was pregnant. I am thrilled that I am alive. God Bless!
    P.S. Truely listen to peoples stories…everyone I know my age who chose abortion has been negatively effected by the consequences.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jacqueline-Harvey/23932888 Jacqueline Harvey

    The last guy to speak is just devastatingly handsome. I will fan myself now. Carry on with your substantive talk.

  • Adriel

    I have a question I wonder if someone can help me out with.

    While I’ve never actually been, It appears, from the coverage I’ve seen, that the March for Life is overwhelmingly Catholic.

    Is this true? If so, why? At the very least it doesn’t seem to get much attention from the celebrity megachurch pastors and music artists and their media offerings.

    So does the mainstream Christian/evangelical/non-denom crowd show up to these things? If not, I have a hard time understanding why not.

    I don’t know, at the very least I don’t sense the full weight of the mainstream American Christian media empire behind this movement, and that sits strangely with me.

    • Elaine

      It might be because Catholicism in general takes a strong pro-life stance, whereas other Christian groups have a range of beliefs and are not as well-organized.

      • Adriel

        Really? I feel like I’m more likely to meet a pro-choice or wishy-washy “Catholic” than an evangelical who’s anything less than black and white on abortion. I mean, Republican politicians sure as hell aren’t pandering to Catholics when they flaunt their pro-life-yness!

        And given the sizes or their churches and Acquire The Fire-type events, organization doesn’t seem to be an issue at all.

        I feel like the answer lies somewhere else…

        • MC

          Actually, Elaine is right. The Catholic Church (as an organization) is one of a few organized religions which openly and firmly teaches respect for life. Catholics who are pro-abortion or -contraception are exactly what you said: wishy-washy. They shouldn’t be calling themselves Catholic and openly proclaiming their disagreement with a central tenet of Church teaching.

          God bless all the evangelicals, etc. who openly proclaim their respect for life (they are more Catholic than many so-called “Catholics” in this respect!) Their churches may not recognize them because it would be politically incorrect to do so (or if they do recognize it, they may simply not get as much airtime as the Catholic Church because they are smaller/less organized).

        • MC

          Actually, Elaine is right. The Catholic Church (as an organization) is one of a few organized religions which openly and firmly teaches respect for life. Catholics who are pro-abortion or -contraception are exactly what you said: wishy-washy. They shouldn’t be calling themselves Catholic and openly proclaiming their disagreement with a central tenet of Church teaching.

          God bless all the evangelicals, etc. who openly proclaim their respect for life (they are more Catholic than many so-called “Catholics” in this respect!) Their churches may not recognize them because it would be politically incorrect to do so (or if they do recognize it, they may simply not get as much airtime as the Catholic Church because they are smaller/less organized).

        • MC

          Actually, Elaine is right. The Catholic Church (as an organization) is one of a few organized religions which openly and firmly teaches respect for life. Catholics who are pro-abortion or -contraception are exactly what you said: wishy-washy. They shouldn’t be calling themselves Catholic and openly proclaiming their disagreement with a central tenet of Church teaching.

          God bless all the evangelicals, etc. who openly proclaim their respect for life (they are more Catholic than many so-called “Catholics” in this respect!) Their churches may not recognize them because it would be politically incorrect to do so (or if they do recognize it, they may simply not get as much airtime as the Catholic Church because they are smaller/less organized).

        • MC

          Sorry, I do NOT know why it posted that three times! Yikes!

    • Laura

      Yes, there’s a catholic majority but there are evangelicals, som orthodox, jews and even atheists. I would say it is because, while there’s a clear teaching on abortion from the Catholic Church, other christians are allowed to make their own interpretations of the Bible, sola-scriptura and all that (which makes them easy prey to the death culture I guess).

      “So does the mainstream Christian/evangelical/non-denom crowd show up to these things? If not, I have a hard time understanding why not.”

      Yes, if they are truly christian they should be there.

    • Claire

      I passed a group that had a huge banner “Lutherans for Life” and saw a few other groups that were obviously not Catholic.

      As a librarian in a public middle school I noticed when the students researched for debates on the topic of abortion almost all of them wanted to be on the pro life side. So at what age does this idealism and clear sense of values become distorted?

    • Claire

      I passed a group that had a huge banner “Lutherans for Life” and saw a few other groups that were obviously not Catholic.

      As a librarian in a public middle school I noticed when the students researched for debates on the topic of abortion almost all of them wanted to be on the pro life side. So at what age does this idealism and clear sense of values become distorted?

  • James Wallbillich

    Yo Marc! Were you with the particular group of FUS-ers that were being followed by a sea of white beanies (from the great state of Louisiana)? The group directly ahead of us was y’all. And while I wasn’t either praying the rosary, divine mercy, or going insane with everyone I was thinking, “Sweet Jesus Mary and Joseph Marc Barnes could be 25 yards away from me!

    To everyone else: don’t be down that the March is over! Keep spreading the love and joy in your hearts to all in your community. AMEN!?!?!?!?!

  • Paul H

    Thanks so much for creating this video. If anyone here is interested, I have posted your video on my blog, and will be posting more March for Life videos over the next several days: http://catholic-video.blogspot.com/

  • Addie

    I was stuck in DC during the rally, and I noticed a few things. The people involved were rallying for life, yet they left their trash all over the trees and the grass. How is that promoting life, if they deny their natural surroundings of the right to thrive? You can rally all you want, but please be respectful of the area. Your noise is polluting the atmosphere of the city, we don’t need your trash polluting it too.

  • Devin Jones

    Addie, that’s a lie, I was at the rally and the only trash that was left was that in and around garbage cans, in fact the March for Life is consistently the cleanest rally in DC. Now I am sure there was an occasional sign left in an odd place but overall the streets were clean during and after the rally!

  • Pete

    I am seeing an argument below. Instead of entering into the argument, I just want to make one observation about the developments I have seen since 1973. The original Supreme court decision said that it was the woman’s choice (seemed to imply individual conscience here like Edinburgh Eye is mentioning). Well, it is no longer just an individuals choice…there are huge pro abortion programs that have come in to the picture. Instead of the government allowing abortion, they are actually promoting it in this country and in other countries. My tax dollars are going to Planned Parenthood and also leaving the country to promote abortion abroad. Also as a biologist, I understand that while the baby is dependent on the mother during gestation, it is a separate organism, and the basic argument is what groups of people can we put into the category of ok to kill?…right now it is unborn babies, capital offense murderers, and foreign enemies at war. In 1973 when Roe vs Wade was decided, the picture of the woman needing an abortion was a desparate woman…scared, frightened, no where else to turn, but now the picture is getting a procedure as routine as a root canal at the dentist…(50% of minority babies are aborted, and 25% of babies in general….and Planned Parenthood and NARAL are in the business to increase those numbers)

    • Alexandra

      What do you mean by pro-abortion programs? And I’m not sure I understand your argument about that difference between the need for safe and legal abortion in 1973 vs today. Can you explain?

  • Pete

    The march was awesome….I meant to mention that. The encouragement I received from the event far out weighed the cold and the rain..

    One more comment on some of the things I read below….I realize that the argument of Roe V. Wade statement about womans’s own body, however abortion does something to the baby’s body and implies that the unborn baby is the property of the mother. Seems old school thinking in that one human can own another. Slaves used to be owned by their masters, wives used to be owned by their husbands, and children used to be owned by their parents..might have made arguments simpler if we still had it that way, but we decided those things were wrong. We as the human community have gotten beyond that thinking and many people realize we are all in this together, and that none of us own any other person. Right now it is said that it is the woman’s right. It is the legal right because the Supeme Court declared laws against abortion unconstitutional.

  • Mike

    Marc,

    I have no idea what people are talking about? Cow? Veal? Did you delete a post or something?

  • greywind

    Does anyone know who the group dressed all in yellow, singing and dancing was? They were totally and utterly amazing!

    Also, it was so wonderful to see so many of you there standing up for life. Thank you so much for the wonderful witness that each and every one of you were!


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