A millennial woman's dissenting view on the 'Women's' March

A millennial woman's dissenting view on the 'Women's' March
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You probably won’t hear much about the National March for Life in the nation’s capital today. Despite the fact that over half a million people are projected to gather on the National Mall and march their way to the Supreme Court, you may not even see footage.

On the other hand, the chances that you will see wall-to-wall coverage of another march taking place the following day is extremely high. If last year is any indicator, Saturday’s march will get expansive coverage, countless hashtags, and more celebrity opinions than an episode of TMZ. I am referring, of course, to the Women’s March.

If the March for Life isn’t outright overlooked, it will be painted as a gathering of extremists who, as Justin Trudeau put it this week, aren’t “in line with” society. Whatever the case might be, one narrative will emerge loud and clear this weekend: there is only one march that empowers women — and it’s not the March for Life.

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The Women’s March sells itself as a movement to empower women by “dismantling systems of oppression.” It’s a movement, the website says, “guided by self-determination, dignity and respect.”

 

The irony of these claims goes beyond the litany of inclusive language the Women’s March uses and the issues it advocates. Atop that list stands abortion.

Yet abortion’s impact on women is the exact opposite of what the Women’s March claims to want for us.

Dismantling systems of oppression

The Women’s March confidently tells us that if we do make the decision to get rid of our child, we will become more empowered, more independent, and will “dismantle the system of oppression.” That could not be further from the truth.

Estimates from over 80 studies and peer-reviewed articles by researchers across the globe in just the past decade alone show that 30 percent of women who have an abortion will experience “serious and/or prolonged negative consequences” mentally and emotionally. The “freedom” to “choose” an abortion doesn’t, in fact, empower women nor set them free — it often racks them with fear, guilt, and depression.

Self-determination

Abortion advocates, of whom the entire board of the Women’s March considers themselves, tout abortion as a “choice” that women can and should make for their own bodies. It’s about their right to do what they must for their health — no one should intervene, not even the father.

However, a recent study shows the falsehood behind that claim: 75 percent of women who had an abortion said they were pressured to do so. More than half said they had an abortion to make others happy. And 1 in 3 women had an abortion because they were worried their partner would leave them if they didn’t. That doesn’t sound like empowerment or self-determination. It sounds like coercion, a lie sold to women, many whom are seeking love, acceptance, and worth — only to find loneliness, emptiness, and broken pieces.

While the “Women’s March” and Planned Parenthood tell us that our embrace of abortion will “unite” and “enable” us and help us “rise,” we’ve been sold a bill of goods that just isn’t so.

We’ve been told that it is “statistically safer to have an abortion than ... give birth.”

We’ve been told that it’s “our body, our choice.”

We’ve been told that abortion is healthcare.

Where is the dignity in that?

The March for Life will include many women who once believed that abortion means empowerment, but now know that isn’t true. They will be marching, not only for themselves, but to keep other women from believing that same lie. They will be marching to share their own stories and show other women they have a “choice” of another kind, one that brings dignity and respect — choosing life.

Don’t misunderstand me — the March for Life is not one of condemnation or judgment. It is not one of guilt, shame, or despair. It is a march that shines the light on hope — hope for every woman now and every woman yet to be born. A hope that each and every one of us has inherent and unmistakable worth from the minute we're conceived.

Rachel Semmel is director of media relations at District Media Group in Washington, D.C.