On the morning of January 22, the day of the March for Life, the odd publication that has taken over the name “Newsweek” published a piece online, asking “Who’s Missing” from the March, and coming to a most implausible conclusion — that it’s young women.
Anyone who has ever been at the March, or who has seen photographs of it, can only shake their head at the level of self-delusion behind such a thought. One of the most remarkable things about the March is the number of young people there, and the joy that they have in proclaiming their faith in the Gospel of Life.
The folks at Newsweek, though, don’t see that, because it doesn’t fit into their narrative and they’re trapped by ideology. According to the tenets of what passes for modern “feminism”, pro-lifers are mostly angry old white men, and a few angry old white women who have been oppressed by the evil heteropatriarchy. That’s because modern “feminism” is rooted in a denial of authentic femininity, in particular a rejection of — and even fear and resentment of — fertility and motherhood. They have traded authentic feminism for an illusory “freedom” that amounts to little more than the slavery of sexual license, and which requires adherence to the tragic “right” to destroy their own children.
When you look at the world that way, you don’t have to bother to go out to the Washington Mall to see the tens of thousands of young women who were having a great time at the March. Or to the Verizon Center to see the thousands of young women who were rejoicing at the Youth Rally. You don’t even have to get up early to see the 50 young ladies from St. Barnabas High School, and the dozen more from Mt. St. Ursula Academy and St. Michael’s Academy, who took the bus to the March from my parish that morning.
In many ways, the real message of the March is an affirmation of authentic feminism. Real feminism recognizes that God made man and women equal, but complementary. It understands the awesome meaning of the female body — a meaning that affirms fertility, that welcomes and nurtures new life, and that literally embodies an actively receptive love that is a model of our relationship with God Himself. Real feminism is not afraid, or resentful, of fertility and parenthood, but understands that they part of the meaning of life — not just for women, but for men as well.
If the reporter from Newsweek broke out of her ideological prison and came to the Mall, she could have seen this. I saw it very clearly as I trudged up Constitution Avenue, all around me. In particular, I saw it in three young women who were walking in my vicinity, near the Archdiocese banner. To me, Annie, Lauren and Genevieve are perfect examples of what the March really means. These smart, attractive young women, two of whom were there with their sleepy babies, have embraced their femininity, their fertility, and their faith with joy, and were joining the March to celebrate the miracle of life.
Who’s missing from the March? Not young people, and not young women either. It’s modern feminists, who haven’t yet awakened to beauty of how God made them.