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"We're in this for the long run"

Faces of the pro-life movement

The anti-abortion movement is well-funded, organized, and effective. Over the past three years, it has helped pass 230 laws aimed at limiting abortion. But it’s also mostly faceless.

While there are prominent members of the movement — from Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) to March for Life's president Jeanne Monahan-Mancini — there is no single person who represents the political force.

So on January 22, when hundreds of thousands of protesters descended on Washington for the annual March for Life on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Vox went to meet the protesters and see who comes to protest and why.

The answers varied. Some protesters see the pro-life movement as a religious stand; others see it as the cause of the millennial generation. And while they all shared common themes in their motivation — they see abortion as a moral issue — it was interesting to hear the nuances in their reasons.

Here are some of the individuals who make up the movement and why they march.

-Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, Kentucky, who was ordained the year before the Roe ruling.



-Kathleen Wilson, Virginia, founder of Mary's Shelter. Mary's Shelter is a chain of maternity homes that accounts for four of the nearly 400 shelters in the US. These homes, typically run by abortion opponents, house pregnant women and equip them with the supplies they'll need once their children are born.



-Pastor Richard Anger (right), Massachusetts, took an 8-hour bus ride with members of his congregation.


-Julia Johnson, 18, student speaker at the rally, drove 24 hours with most her class from Shanley High School in Fargo, North Dakota. Though there did appear to be a large number of young people at the march, Pew Research Center finds that 56 percent of millennials think that abortion should be legal in most or all cases.


-Chris Robey, Washington, DC, has been coming to the March for nearly 20 years straight.


-Frank Capisciolto, 36, flew in from Canada.


-Tricia Kent (center), North Carolina, started going to the march in the '70s.


-Deb, from Pittsburgh, attended the march with her husband and first came 10 years ago.


-Helen "Sunny" Turner, Pennsylvania. For 16 years, she has stood outside abortion clinics and tried to speak with women going in about options other than abortion.




-Peggy Hartshorn, Columbus, Ohio, president of Heartbeat International. Heartbeat International is an association of pregnancy help centers, maternity homes, and adoption services. Pregnancy help centers point women to options other than abortion, and may provide financial assistance to women in need or referrals to adoption agencies.



Editor: SARAH KLIFF
Photo Editor: JOE POSNER


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