On the morning of January 24, many pro-life Kansans wondered what would happen at the annual Kansas March for Life at the State Capitol Building in Topeka.
On one hand, the victory of the Dobbs decision overturning the infamous Roe v. Wade was very encouraging. The move returned abortion to the states after the Court found no right to abortion inside the American Constitution.
However, the marchers also felt the shadow of a pro-life defeat, when, on August 2, voters rejected the “Value Them Both” initiative that would have enshrined the right to life in the Kansas Constitution.
The tragic defeat demonstrated how attached a significant and influential minority is to the barbaric and gravely sinful practice of procured abortion. It also reflected the large sums of out-of-state money that were applied to help defeat this amendment.
During the campaign, Kansans witnessed many aggressive, vulgar and negative actions and statements that vilified those who stood for more protections for innocent human life. “Value Them Both” banners were torn and ripped out of people’s yards. At one Catholic Church, a huge 10-foot banner was destroyed and spray painted. Another Catholic Church suffered vandalism in the form of pro-abortion messages spray painted on the walls of the property and a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
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In face of such intimidation and the electoral defeat, many wondered if attendance at the annual march would be affected.
On the contrary! The march and rally were very well attended. Pro-lifers from all over Kansas traveled from near and far to participate. One group traveled from Goodland, which is over 300 miles away from the state capital. Numerous parochial schools arrived in filled buses. Archbishop Joseph F. Naunman of Kansas City, Kansas was there with members of the clergy and religious congregations. Grandparents, parents and many others were there in great numbers. Some parents brought their children to the rally despite the cold temperatures.
In addition, pro-life legislators and other office holders proudly stood on the steps of the Capitol Building, where they were individually recognized for defending life. The tone of the speeches was combative and encouraging. The crowd responded with loud and enthusiastic applause.
Friends and supporters of the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) joined the crowd. They handed out a flyer titled “Moving Forward to the Next Phase in the Pro-Life Crusade” to those arriving. Hardly anyone declined.
The Dobbs decision has only encouraged Kansans to do more to eliminate the scourge of abortion in their state. May all fifty states and U.S. territories do the same.