The “red wave,” amplified in some quarters into a “red tsunami,” never materialized. The day after the November midterms, pundits on television shows across the political spectrum fidgeted in their chairs—wrong yet again. For prolifers, the political turmoil of the past few months has been particularly grim. I remember—I shall never forget—reading Justice Alito’s leaked Dobbs opinion last May. It was like a dream. Roe was really going to be overturned. And, when the decision was released on June 24, it was.
But the euphoria was quickly wet-blanketed. Voters in Kansas rejected a pro-life referendum in August. California and Vermont wrote abortion into their state constitutions in November. Montana, most horrifically of all, rejected a measure that would have protected infants who had survived an abortion. We won the decisive battle. But then we started to lose the war.
American Life League’s Judie Brown, I think, best summed up the midterm election results and the overall array of pro-life ballot defeats.
An honest appraisal of election results leads one to the conclusion that the babies lost ground. To be honest, not enough of us prioritized the babies, and thus the nation failed to make a dramatic change. Some point fingers at certain politicians, but there is a much deeper causal connection before us. And that, my friends, is that amorality is seeping deeper into the social fabric.
For nearly fifty years, Americans lived in the shadow of legalized abortion. Everyone born after Roe made it through to the light of day with a target on his or her back. Any one of us could have been dismembered in the womb. The “amorality” that Brown speaks of tinges everyone; the evil unleashed by Roe disfigures us all.
Many recognized the horror of abortion and went out among other Roe-haunted Americans seeking to clear the killing fields. But many others acquiesced, even applauded. Abortion as a woman’s right to choose. Abortion as female—and male—liberation. Abortion as a rite of passage. Abortion as healthcare. Abortion as a sign of belonging among the progressive elite. Abortion as settled American law—which it was, and in many places, remains. Abortion as, I am sad to admit it, part of the American way of life.
Yes, many said “No” to abortion. But many more, in one way or another, silently or out loud, said “Yes.” The devil needs only a nod, and then the entire house is his own.
A red wave, a red tsunami, hit our country on January 22, 1973. The blood of innocents has been streaming ever since. In fact, innocent blood flowed before Roe, in the hollows of a national moral façade that was much more accommodating of evil than most had realized. But once the red wave hit, it was unmistakable.
Who has not seen that red tide running? Republican or Democrat—in November of 2022, what real difference would a few changed seats in the Senate or House of Representatives have made when measured against nearly five decades of wanton bloodletting?
I know, I know. Politics is important. Politics got us the Supreme Court justices who finally kicked Roe to the curb. Politics might have favored babies and mothers more this past Election Day. Politics is not nothing, and I don’t mean to suggest that a pro-life win in November would not have made a difference. It would have.
But then in my mind’s eye I see the still-swelling surge of the red wave, infant body parts bobbing along like garbage. It will take more than an election, or even a dozen of them, to stem the amoral tide that swamps our republic, that makes a mockery of our laws. And even then, some things can never be undone. Sixty-three million of our brothers and sisters are never coming back.
It may even be that this red wave will continue to swamp any political red waves on the horizon. And then what? Of course, we will never give up; we are pro-life no matter how bad things get. The more the world slips into darkness, the more we will love. But we must be prepared to watch the red wave continue to undermine whatever other institutions and political processes we thought could be used against it. Because this one is a tsunami.