Lessons From Kansas
Updated: Aug 3, 2022
The 1973 Roe v Wade decision spawned the "pro-life movement." The momentum of that movement reached a fever pitch in 1991 - the Summer of Mercy - and the epicenter was Wichita, Kansas. People from all over the US bused to Wichita, specifically to draw attention to the grisly practice of George Tiller, an abortionist famous for performing very late term abortions. However, the pilgrims (who were of all ages and from across the political spectrum) were really there to protest abortion in general.
If you were caught up in the momentum of it, you thought (for a bit) that, "Hey, we may actually be able to reverse this second great American sin!" But, for those who were more pragmatic, there was always the gnawing fear the realities were not in your favor ... and that was even before Tiller was murdered in 2009, ironically handing the martyrdom mantle to the guy who had made a great living tearing developed children apart and throwing them in the trash.
First and foremost, there was no vested interest on the side of the unborn. No one with power really benefits from their protection - only the hidden, voiceless, vote-less children. On the other hand, anyone who might accidentally reproduce had a vested interest in keeping abortion legal. That interest became even more ubiquitous as the sexual revolution made casual sex the new national pastime.
And the more time passed, the more people had abortions - well over 60 million to date. Once you were a party to an abortion, it would be very rare (and uniquely courageous) to become anti-abortion, especially if you were the woman actually having the life inside you - your daughter or son - terminated. So, every year, somewhere around a million more women, and their sex partners and other confidantes, were destined to become adamantly pro-abortion.
And then there was the extremely profitable industry that grew up to provide the abortions. They developed powerful lobbying groups and used them.
So, it was always a pipedream - or an act of faith - to believe abortion would ever be really limited.
As one could have predicted, the pro-life movement waned, even though brave people continued to fight the good fight, and even though evolving science continued to support their cause - understanding of DNA confirmed the child was an individual human being; ultrasounds allowed us to see her/him for the first time.
Still, it was a mismatch, like the pre-born baby's tiny body versus the abortionist's suction machine.
Then, with something that seemed like a bolt from the blue, this year the Supreme Court overturned Roe and sent the issue back to the people.
But, you see, Roe was actually two nightmares, not one. It didn't just soil our nation with the blood of millions of its most innocent inhabitants, it also mangled our structure of government. As Justice Byron White said in dissent, it was an exercise of "raw judicial power" wherein seven old white men unilaterally, and undemocratically, decided this fundamental social issue and tore our Constitution apart to do it.
It turns out that (as we've said for months), the only nightmare the Court woke us from with Dobbs was the second one. All they did was simply scotch-tape the Constitution back together.
They left the children in the hands of We The People, state by state. The rabid demons who yelled the world was coming to an end because the Supreme Court was trying to take over their wombs - or whatever crap they were screaming - were (of course) wrong. Yesterday, the people of the state of Kansas proved they were wrong, by turning their backs on the preborn in the first real post-Dobbs vote.
In 1991, the first wave of the pro-life movement peaked - in Kansas.
In 2009, a single unbalanced individual gave the pro-life movement its worst set-back when George Tiller was "martyred" - in Kansas.
In 2022, the second wave of the pro-life movement has stumbled out of the gate - in Kansas.
Maybe, like Dorothy and Toto, the issue will once again return to Kansas. But, in the meantime, let's state the obvious:
Political might does not make right.