On yesterday’s “Talk of the Nation,” Operation Rescue founder Randall Terry joined the ACLJ’s Jay Sekulow and Father Thomas Reese of Georgetown University to discuss the state of the anti-choice movement, during which Terry lamented that they should have outlawed abortion by this point and proclaimed that the movement as a whole is in disarray and thus called on activists to start “ratcheting up our rhetoric”:
MR TERRY: The political reality is that at many levels the pro-life movement is imploding. And this recent election shows just how far we have been set back. And what my mission is over the next four or eight or 10 or 12 years is to assess how and why we have failed, because we should’ve made child-killing illegal by now. Why are we in this mess that we are in? What have we done that is not working? What have we failed to do that we should be doing? And then to implement those strategies at a cultural and political level, so that we can achieve our goal, which is that you cannot kill a human being from the moment of conception until birth in any of the 50 states, period.
CONAN: You just call it imploding. What do see as a signs of that implosion?
Mr. TERRY: The fact that 55 percent of Catholics voted for Obama; 42 percent of those who claim to be born again voted for Obama. That people – whereas child-killing used to be a non-negotiable with many voters – there were people that said, I am pro-life; I believe in a child’s right to be alive, but yet I’m going to cast a vote for the most ardent supporter of child-killing that has even won the White House. This shows some kind of a massive disconnect and, in my opinion, a failure in pro-life leaders and in Catholic bishops, the Evangelical superstars, both at the pastoral level, and on the TV, radio and ministry level.
Mr. TERRY: [I]f abortion is murder, then what we need to be doing as the pro-life movement – in addition to any incremental steps that we can make such as the ultrasound legislation, requiring women to see an ultrasound of their baby before they have it killed – what we need to do is we need to have an urgency both in our rhetoric and our actions that is equal to the crime. The very fact that we could sit and discuss in calm tones how we could work with the enemy, you know, shows such a callousness of our conscience. We have lived alongside this evil for so long that we have lost our sense of horror.
If someone was going to be killed on the other side of the glass here, we only have two appropriate reactions. One is to scream our lungs out, and the other is physical intervention. So, where the pro-life movement is failing and where the line of answer that father gave and what we do agree is we want to end child-killing. But where the line of reason falls is that the pro-life movement has failed to meet this holocaust with actions and rhetoric that are equal to the crime. So, what we need to be doing over the next four years is ratcheting up our rhetoric, is becoming like the movement to end child labor or the movement for women’s voting rights or the movement to end segregation.
Terry was also asked about his views regarding Rick Warren’s invitation deliver the invocation at Barack Obama’s inauguration and said he could only applaud him if he took the opportunity to plead God’s forgiveness “for the blood of nearly 50 million children that is crying from the ground for vengeance”:
Mr. TERRY: If I was asked to pray, I would pray. So, the issue is not, should he pray? The issue is, what does he say? Pastor Rick’s judgments are pouring in fast and furious against him from both sides. But the reality is, if he stood up there and said, God, I ask you to bless this administration, but I also ask you to forgive us for the blood of nearly 50 million children that is crying from the ground for vengeance, and I ask you to change the heart of this country and help us, God, to work together to end the killing of the innocent, and then, he went on and prayed for other things as well. But if he prayed something of real substance, like John the Baptist talking to Herod or other great saints that spoke to political leaders, then I would applaud him.