In organizing this year’s anti-abortion march from Macon City Hall to Central City Park, Norman Yukers said he wanted to shift the focus from one of protesting abortion to “celebrating the sanctity of life.”
“Many think we’re fighting the fight for unborn children,” said Yukers, senior pastor of Pine Forest Baptist Church. “But we’re celebrating that all life is holy.”
About 100 people turned out in spite of the rain Monday to mark the 39th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision.
The Supreme Court’s 1973 decision provided the right for a woman to have an abortion legally.
To emphasize the point that the march wasn’t just about abortion, Yukers told those in attendance that the march also was there to remember anyone who had died as a result of genocide anywhere in the world. He asked that everyone who marched Monday to do so in silence, to represent the voices silenced in mass killings ranging from the Holocaust to ethnic cleansing in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
“These people don’t have a voice,” Yukers told the crowd. “A person is a person no matter how old they are. A person is a person no matter what color they are. A person is a person no matter what sex they are.”
In the past, Macon’s Sav-A-Life Ministries organized the march each year, Yukers said, but that organization’s board of directors thought the march hurt the organization when it tried to talk to mothers contemplating abortion, so it sought someone else to take over the march.
That’s when Yukers and his church stepped in.
While Yukers said the march wasn’t aimed at changing Roe v. Wade but rather to remember people who died, some who were marching Monday said they felt very strongly about wanting the law changed. Many in the crowd carried signs with slogans such as “Life is Precious” and “Remembering the Victims of Abortion.”
Kristi Uhles of Macon took her 9-year-old son Dalton with her to the march.
“I’m here in support against abortion,” she said. “I’m against abortion, and I always have been.”
Paul Dziadul, pastor of Lake Wildwood Baptist Church, led those in attendance in prayer just before the march began.
“The atrocity of abortion is that it happened under our watch,” he told the crowd. “Life in the womb is anything but fetal tissue. Life begins long before then.”
To contact writer Phillip Ramati, call 744-4334.