By NANCY CZABALA
COLUMBIA — Thousands marched in Columbia this past Saturday to peacefully protest abortion and to remember the 25th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade and Doe vs. Bolton, the Supreme Court decisions that legalized abortion. Protesters, after marching from the capitol, gathered in Finlay Park for a rally that brought to light the unattained efforts of the abortion industry.
Deborah Bian-Lingle, president of South Carolina Citizens for Life, which co-sponsored the march and rally with the University of South Carolina Students for Life, kicked off the rally. She proposed to the crowd that the social ills which abortion were intended to alleviate have in actuality not seen the light of their promises. Illegitimacy, child abuse and poverty, which abortion activists thought would diminish, are still large parts of the culture.
Lingle cited examples, proving abortion has not achieved what it was intended to. The unmarried teen pregnancy rate has risen from 49.4 thousand in 1972 to 99.2 thousand in 1990. Child abuse rates have risen steadily since 1973, doubling between 1986 and 1993. In 1973 the abortion lobby said legalizing abortion would enhance the social and economic status of women, but there has been a steady increase of women and children in poverty. Partial-birth abortions were developed following Roe vs. Wade and at least 3,000-5,000 babies are killed in this savage manner every year.
Bishop David B. Thompson offered the opening prayer asking the Lord to help in the fight against abortion. Governor David Beasley thanked South Carolinians for backing him in his efforts in the House and Senate in fighting abortion, saying South Carolina has passed the toughest partial-birth abortion ban.
In South Carolina, the pro-life movement is responsible for passing the Parental Consent Act, the Woman’s Right to Know Act, the Abortion Clinic Regulation Act and the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act.
Lingle thanked the crowd for their efforts, telling them, “You’ve saved thousands!”
“As a result of the work that South Carolina Citizens for Life does in the State and General Assembly, in concert with the efforts of other pro-life organizations, such as the crisis pregnancy ministries, the number of abortions in South Carolina has declined dramatically,” said Lingle. In 1988, the number of abortions peaked at more than 14,000. By 1996 the number of abortions has dropped to 9,326. “That’s more than 4,000 babies lives saved in an eight-year period,” said Lingle.
Christian musician and well-known pro-life activist Kathy Troccoli took the stage, proclaiming her disgust for abortion and talked of her nationwide efforts to put an end to the practice. Her song “A Baby’s Prayer,” touched every heart present. The song tells the story of an unborn baby’s wish: that if he should die before he wakes he asks the Lord to keep his mother’s soul. Troccoli made a video of this song and raised money to distribute the video nationwide in hopes that it would reach women contemplating abortion.
The featured speaker at the rally was Steve Mosher, director of the Population Research Institute in Virginia and an international expert on the brutal one-child, forced abortion policies of China. Mosher, who is also vice president for International Affairs at Human Life International, began his research and writing on family demographic issues in 1977, with an investigation of rural Taiwanese communities that later became the basis for the doctoral dissertation he submitted for Stanford University. Becoming the first American social scientist to conduct extensive research in China, he observed first-hand the brutal way in which China was enforcing its newly announced one-child policy. His observations later lead to the publishing of his best-selling book A Mother’s Ordeal: One Woman’s Fight Against China’s One-Child Policy. Mosher completed all his requirements for his doctorate in Cultural Anthropology from Stanford University, but was denied his degree because the Chinese government complained about his research and publications.
As Mosher took the stage in Finlay Park he said, “My most important qualification for being here is that I’m the proud father of eight children.” He compared the harsh reality of abortion in the United States to Chinese policies. He said the Chinese goal of creating a better man would be applauded by men such as Adolf Hitler and is comparatively similar to “our reckless efforts of genetic engineering and recently cloning.”
He told the crowd, “We have much to suffer before the next quarter century has passed.”