With gracious thanks to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., for his inspiration and the basic outline of the first paragraph of this, and for the next four paragraphs, which are essentially verbatim from his letter from a Birmingham jail.
Perhaps it is easy for those who have never felt the stinging dark of an infant dying to say "Wait." But when you have never seen the evil of a child being ripped apart by vicious doctors; when you have seen the self-loathing parents kill their own children; when every child destroyed is completely and utterly defenseless, and always wanted by some couple looking for a child to adopt; when you suddenly find your tongue twisted and you speech stammering as you seek to explain to your five-year-old daughter why anyone would kill their own sweet baby, and see tears welling up in her eyes when she is told that some people just don't understand their own wretched evil hearts and actions, and see ominous clouds of heart-breaking sadness form in her little mental sky; when you have to concoct an answer for a three-year-old daughter who is asking: "Papa, why do parents treat babies so mean?"; when a baby's first name becomes "fetus," and her middle name becomes "blob of flesh" (even in the third trimester); when you are harried by day and haunted by night that you live in a country where the killing of innocent children, even after 40 weeks is legal. There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair. I hope, America, you can understand our legitimate and unavoidable impatience.
In your arguments against us you assert that our actions, even though peaceful, must be condemned because they precipitate violence. But is this a logical assertion? Isn't this like condemning a robbed man because his possession of money precipitated the evil act of robbery? Isn't this like condemning Socrates because his unswerving commitment to truth and his philosophical inquiries precipitated the act by the misguided populace in which they made him drink hemlock? Isn't this like condemning Jesus because his unique God-consciousness and never-ceasing devotion to God's will precipitated the evil act of crucifixion? We must come to see that, as the federal courts have consistently affirmed, it is wrong to urge an individual to cease his efforts to gain his basic constitutional rights because the quest may precipitate violence. Society must protect the robbed and punish the robber.
Sometimes a law is just on its face and unjust in its application. For instance, I could be arrested simply for picketing an abortion clinic. Now, there is nothing wrong in having an ordinance which requires demonstrations to be peaceful. But such an ordinance becomes unjust when it is used to maintain the killing of children and to deny citizens the First Amendment privilege of peaceful assembly and protest.
I hope you are able to understand the distinction I am trying to point out. In no sense do I advocate evading or defying the law, as would a rabid anti-abortionist. That would lead to anarchy. One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly, lovingly, and with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law.
Of course, there is nothing new about this kind of civil disobedience. It was evidenced sublimely in the refusal of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to obey the laws of Nebuchadnezzar, on the ground that a higher moral law was at stake. It was practiced superbly by the early Christians, who were willing to face hungry lions and the excruciating pain of chopping blocks rather than submit to certain unjust laws of the Roman Empire.
There is no demonstration yet that I have been a part of that has gotten me arrested, but I assume that the time is coming soon. So get out there my brothers and sisters. Get arrested if you must, but always be peaceful. And don't stop fighting until the over 50 million children who have been mercilessly slaughtered world-wide since 1970 can look down on us without feeling a sadness for the sorry plight that the world is now in. God Bless you all, and God save the innocent child.