Now that the anti-abortion movement has accomplished the elevation of Amy Coney Barrett to the last Supreme Court vacancy that President Donald Trump will likely have the opportunity to fill, maybe it is a time to celebrate, take note of where you have arrived and set your GPS for a new and better course.
You’ve worked hard for this outcome. You have told us, sometimes in hushed voices over the backyard fence, that you have looked the other way as Mr. Trump has given you a thousand reasons to oppose him while you’ve remained loyal for the sake of this final appointment. We’ve tried to understand why you’ve run interference to get to this moment. You’ve quietly told us that your activism was to make this moment happen.
You have met the goal that is now in the rear-view mirror but, when you recall how many times you’ve confessed your discomfort in how you reached it, do you see the fork in the road ahead through the windshield?
Isn’t it time to disentangle from the accumulated issues that have weighed you down as you have hitched your wagon to causes that you never would have espoused except in defense of Mr. Trump? Maybe you have manipulated Mr. Trump to get to this place and maybe he has used you, but you’ve arrived at the fork in the road where you can safely retrieve your moral compass and part company with every cause that doesn’t harmonize with your own.
While Mr. Trump ridiculed the heroic service of John McCain, insulted America’s allies, denigrated our military men and women as “losers” and “suckers,” coddled Mr. Putin while Russia is said to be paying bounties for American dead and threatened to dismantle NATO, you held your tongue.
You cringed when he expressed his intention to kill the families of suspected terrorists. When he paid porn stars for silence and boasted of sexual assaults you felt it prudent to ignore his critics for the sake of getting one more Supreme Court Justice. Mr. Trump mocked the disabled, engaged in daily falsehoods, endangered the lives of immigrants and guiltless Muslims by painting the whole of them with a broad brush — suggesting that all are guilty of the bad actions of a relatively few and that none are to be credited with the good of the many — you saw the injustice. But you said among yourselves and to outsiders that it “bothers” you that he is “so crass,” and that you “don’t like his tweets,” pretending that the wrongdoing has been no greater than these small complaints.
The behaviors that you’ve tolerated, ignored and excused are now attached to the anti-abortion movement like a ball and chain.
The way forward for your movement is with a lightened load and with a commitment to endorsing a single idea about which you feel certain rather than persons who are inclined to muddy the waters surrounding your message, while promoting other agendas that are abhorrent to you.
You’ve learned the danger of giving unqualified and unconditional endorsement to individuals who rob you, in the public square, of your credibility and your consistent message. Maybe you feel the need for a cleansing. If you are to benefit from the lessons of the past few years, you had best act now.
Call upon pro-life leadership to terminate its endorsement of Mr. Trump. You no longer need him and you owe him nothing. He is more in your debt than the other way around and he has nothing more to offer you.
Open your eyes to the importance of broader issues now that you have met this goal. Rejoin your neighbors, family members, co-workers and friends whose thoughts and feelings you’ve pushed aside for the sake of this now-accomplished goal. Unite with us by once again taking into consideration the moral and national safety issues that concern all of us.