The Real Burden For Millennials
Shawn Carney, Co-Founder & President of 40 Days for Life
Perhaps former NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens said it best when he stated, "I love me some me."
This can apply to many areas of our social media culture that has at center stage what we are all told to desire the most – self.
This has led to an overly self-reflective, over analyzing mentality, and I fear we millennials as a group are the worst. We are both victims of and part of the problem. The media over analyzes what millennials say, eat, buy, watch, and feel. As they do this, we millennials need to focus on the most lasting and important foundation of our culture – the family.
Every generation's most lasting impact is ultimately how they improve or destruct the life of the family. We don't really want to be remembered for Saved by the Bell or iPhones. Those will come and go, but enhancing the foundation of our society during a time in history when it is under unprecedented attack is a duty we cannot run from.
We don’t pick the point of history we are born into or the circumstances of our culture. In his classic book, Man’s Search for Meaning, holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl states, “Man’s unique opportunity lies in the way in which he bears his burden.”
How true that is. As we pass 44 years of legalized abortion here in the United States there have been 58 million abortions. This is the greatest moral issue of our generation and at the center of it is Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion operation doing 324,000 abortions with over $500 million of our taxes annually. All of that contributed to their $1.3 billion revenue in the last reported year.
And yet there has never been more hope or momentum in the prolife movement which is both vibrant and young.
Over 200,000 gather every year at the March for Life in Washington DC and estimates show that two-thirds of the crowd is 35 and under. There are a lot of high schoolers, college students, strollers, and yes, millennials.
At the local level we see that pregnancy resource centers offering medical and material help to women in need outnumber abortion providers 3 to 1. The momentum is real. I’ve traveled to over 400 cities as 40 Days for Life has spread from 1 city in Texas to now 675 cities in 40 countries. This peaceful campaign of prayer, fasting, and peaceful vigil outside of abortion facilities has helped save 12,668 babies that we know of, and those moms had somewhere to go for real healthcare.
In the end the abortion issue is about hearts and minds because no one grows up wanting an abortion. It’s not just women who turn away when given an option, abortion workers do as well. We have helped 141 abortion workers including two Planned Parenthood managers leave their jobs. One of those managers ended up leading the 40 Days for Life campaign outside of her former workplace.
All of this momentum hurts the abortion business which is why we’ve seen 83 abortion facilities close their doors and go out of business following 40 Days for Life campaigns. This includes the former Planned Parenthood abortion facility in Texas where 40 Days for Life first began. That building now serves as our headquarters and the medical side is operated by two former abortion doctors. The tide is not turning to the pro-life movement, it has turned.
That’s why the former president of America’s largest abortion advocacy group, NARAL, resigned from her position due to, "an inability to engage young people." The reality is that the "pro-choice" position is not as attractive as it was 40 years ago. Today it is a position that must deny science, reason, and human rights and it’s a movement that gets older by the day as the pro-life movement gets younger.
We have the momentum and we need to keep it.
Now that President Trump has taken office the momentum is even larger (or shall we say huuuuge!) Planned Parenthood spent upwards of $30 million on the election and didn’t get the result they wanted.
Their CEO, Cecile Richards, said that this is "the most dangerous moment in Planned Parenthood's history." She’s right.
It's "dangerous" because they have been failing at the grassroots level and now their taxpayer funding is at risk. And the impact on the abortion business could be staggering.
I’ve had the joy of meeting so many millennials in the pro-life movement who are not only participating in this moment of history, but are leading it. I encourage you to join them. How we treat our most vulnerable determines who we are as a nation and a generation. This is great moment in history and you can be part of it.
In the coming weeks learn what you can do to participate in 40 Days for Life starting on March 1st or find your role to help defund Planned Parenthood by visiting defundplannedparenthood.com for free resources and calls to action.
No matter what you do to join tens of thousands of millennials in this work, do something in the pro-life movement in 2017. Abortion is our burden in history to bear so let us face it with courage and joy. History –and future generations – will thank you for being part of the beginning of the end of abortion.
Shawn Carney is the Co-Founder and President of 40 Days for Life. He is a regular media spokesperson and his work has been featured on hundreds of outlets including Fox News’ The O’Reilly Factor, The Laura Ingraham Show, The Drudge Report, The Guardian, USA Today, and Christian media including The Christian Post, National Catholic Register, Sirius XM Catholic Radio, EWTN Radio, and Focus on the Family. He is also the host of the 40 Days for Life podcast.
hawn is one of the most sought-after pro-life speakers, addressing audiences coast-to-coast and internationally. He has executive produced award-winning pro-life documentaries, and is co-author of the #1 Top Rated Christian book: 40 Days for Life: Discover What God Has Done … Imagine What He Can Do. Shawn lives in Texas with his wife and six children.
You can follow this author on Twitter here: @CarneyShawn