From July 16 through August 1, young volunteers with The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) campaigned throughout the states of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama against the sin of abortion. With the reversal of Roe v. Wade by the U.S. Supreme Court, their message was simple: the pro-life movement must not sit on its laurels. It must utilize the momentum gained from the Roe reversal and advance.
A Time to Renew the Fight
“With Roe v Wade behind us, now is the time to charge forward against the culture of death,” said TFP caravanner William Gossett. “The rotten culture that leads to abortion is far from gone. While we thank God Roe was overturned, which fills us with great encouragement, we have a lot of work to do to make abortion unthinkable.”
For this reason, TFP volunteers campaigned in downtowns and busy intersections with big banners that read, “Roe v Wade Overturned. Thank God!” and “Pray and Act to End the Sin of Abortion.” They carried signs encouraging the public to honk and distributed flyers.
A Nation Divided
Lafayette, Louisiana was very symptomatic of the reactions received. The TFP volunteers unfurled their banners and signs at the intersection of Settlers Trace Boulevard and Ambassador Caffery Parkway. “You make me so happy to see you out here that I want to cry!” said one lady who got out of her car to come and thank the young men.
Meanwhile, lots of cars honked and waved. Occasional screams and obscene gestures came from enraged liberals. “I want to come back and run you over!” shouted one woman. Then two women arrived, wearing face masks and carrying hand-made pro-abortion signs. One read, “Catholics for Choice.” They were visibly bothered by the number of cars manifesting their approval for the TFP message. When TFP volunteer Rex Teodosio tried to engage them in discussion, they would remain silent or say, “abortion is women’s health.”
The weather constantly threatened to rain, and strong gusts of wind would occasionally blow. One such gust took the “Catholics for Choice” sign right out of the hands of the woman and blew it in the road. Five cars drove over it. “I don’t think God likes that sign,” said Rex Teodosio. At that moment, the wind picked up the sign and was caught by the grill of a passing car and disappeared from sight.
Everywhere the TFP caravanners went, the majority of the reactions were positive. People opened their doors to the young volunteers and provided lodging and food. “The support we had was truly something memorable,” said Luiz Solorzano. “It was humbling to see how much people were willing to help.”
In Tyler, Texas, a man showed up with two cases of cold Powerade. “This is the least I can do. . . I’ve seen you on YouTube. I am going to pick up my sons and come back. I want them to see your example.” The man did return with his sons, his wife and a cooler full of water bottles and ice!
Satanism and Abortion
The two driving forces that propel the abortion revolution are pride and sensuality. In his celebrated work Revolution and Counter-Revolution, Professor Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira makes this very clear. Abortion results from the desire to throw off restraint and satiate unruly passions. Rather than use the passions in accordance with God’s plan, abortion is a way to satisfy sensuality without the burden of children. “My body, my choice,” is their mantra. It is similar to Lucifer’s cry in heaven, “I will not serve.” The TFP volunteers witnessed this link when abortion advocates shouted: “hail Satan” nearly everywhere they campaigned.
In Alexandria, Louisiana, a car of angry women drove by shouting, “hail Satan!” Later they came back with nearly illegible signs. “In the course of the discussion, they admitted to being witches. In fact, one of them had the Satanic Temple logo on her phone,” said Rex Teodosio. “She compared unborn babies to grass that can be cut without any consequences.”
Assault in Downtown Houston
The last campaign was in Houston, Texas. The bagpipes and drums echoed off the skyscrapers. A clear division of blue sky and impending storm could be seen through the high-rises. “Defend the unborn,” Evan Olwell told a man and a woman walking by. “They then breathed a big sigh of relief because they thought we might be abortion advocates.” The woman shook his hand and those of the volunteers around him.
“Where are all the women?” shouted a businessman that walked by. “Do you really think there are no women who are pro-life?” responded William Gossett as the two crossed the street. The businessman then angrily shoved him. Coincidentally a police officer just showed up. “It was assault, officer! I saw it. He assaulted him!” said a bum who witnessed the whole incident.
The man was flagged down and had to sit like a schoolboy in trouble for a half hour while the officer talked with him and made a police report.
The Battle Continues
The caravan completed its last campaign on August 1. Looking back on all the cities visited and miles driven, the young men had a lot to reflect upon. In two weeks, they campaigned in twenty-two cities and drove 3,300 miles. They prayed public rosaries of thanksgiving at the Earle Cabell Federal Court building where Roe began and another in front of the Jackson Women’s Health Center in Jackson, Mississippi, where Roe began its demise. The caravan reaffirmed the pro-life movement’s resolve to take the fight to the bitter end. Now is not the time to stop, but rather to take heart and fight until abortion is unthinkable!