COLUMBUS, Ohio — From womb to tomb. That was a phrase heard repeatedly at the first-ever Ohio March for Life on Wednesday.
“We’re here to fight for the unborn and to stand up for life,” said Hollieann Geike, president of Students for Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville.
She and her fellow students held the banner to lead the march through downtown Columbus. They were joined by hundreds of others from across the state, including Melanie Parin of Greenville.
“Life is so important and so precious, and we need to defend it because these are voices that aren’t heard, and we have to be their voices,” Parin said.
She has 14 grandchildren and has now lived in both the pre-Roe v. Wade and post-Roe v. Wade world.
“I’ve been pro-life for the last 50 years, been to D.C. probably eight times, and I’m so glad that Ohio is being represented today because it’s such an important issue,” she said.
Prior to this march, the focus had been on Washington, D.C., where a national March for Life has been held each January. But now that Roe v. Wade has been overturned, the focus is shifting back to the states.
“Now is our time,” said Rep. Jena Powell, R-Arcanum. “While today is a day that we celebrate the end of Roe, we also look around at each and every one of us and know that the fight here in Ohio is just beginning.”
Powell was flanked by nearly two-dozen state lawmakers who take an anti-abortion stance. Many had a hand in passing the Heartbeat Act, which is currently on pause after a Hamilton County judge’s order. And Powell said the next steps will be trying to pass the Personhood Act, which would ban abortion at the point of conception, and to find a way to prevent companies from covering the costs for patients who need to travel out of state for reproductive services.
“We will do everything we can to end abortion and make Ohio the most pro-life, pro-family state in the nation,” Powell said.
This is despite the fact that most polls still show the majority of Ohioans to not favor a ban on abortion. But those 10TV spoke with expressed doubt about the accuracy of those polls.
“I believe that if you really took a poll of the entire state and not just simply the major metropolitans, you would find that more Ohioans are pro-life than they are not, and I would even dare say that even African Americans are pro-life, most African Americans are,” said Ruth Edmonds, Christian engagement ambassador for the Center for Christian Virtue, which was a sponsor of the march.
And she acknowledged that the vast majority of those in attendance at the Wednesday march appeared to be White. 10TV also dug deeper into the phrase “from womb to tomb” and what that means when it comes to the death penalty.
“You know what, we are a pro-life organization,” she said. “And so, we’re standing on the issue of life, and our issue for life right now is protecting children in the womb. We can’t take on every battle, every fight. No one can. But we believe that the most important fight right now is to protect the lives of those unborn babies in the womb.”