Lila Rose, the founder of LiveAction, the youth-oriented, pro-life group that recently moved its headquarters to Washington,¬†spoke to The Cloakroom about coming to the nation‚??s capital and the Jan. 25 March for Life.
Although she marched last year shortly after moving to the District of Columbia, Lila Rose said this is the first March for Life since Live Action‚??s operations made the move from California six months ago.
‚??Now, we are going to have a real presence at the march this time,‚?Ě said Rose, who founded LiveAction in 2003 as a pro-life club as a 15-year-old.
The annual March for Life begins with a pro-life rally at noon on Jan. 25 on the National Mall west of 8th street near the Smithsonian Castle and then proceeds with a march down Constitution Avenue, ending at the Supreme Court.
Today, LiveAction is best known for its 2011 viral videos of its undercover investigations of Planned Parenthood, which exposed workers at the country‚??s largest abortion provider accepting ‚??scholarships‚?Ě for race-based abortions and participating in gender-selection abortions. Planned Parenthood asked the FBI to investigate the visits, according to The Associated Press, but¬†no charges were filed.
Rose is still young, and it is the youth of her volunteers that gives her confidence, she said.
The LiveAction Facebook page has more than 435,000 fans and most of them are between the ages of 13 and 17, she said. The group‚??s magazine, The Advocate, is distributed to high schools around the country.
There is still work to do, but polling demonstrates more Americans are pro-life than ever before, and most of them are young Americans, she said, adding, ‚??We will continue to press forward, whether to defund Planned Parenthood or to change hearts and minds on college campuses.‚?Ě
‚??I really believe with the under-swelling of the pro-life movement and the youth movement, we will reach a point when abortion will be unthinkable,‚?Ě she said.
‚??We are a youth-led movement dedicated to building a culture of life and ending abortion, the greatest human rights injustice of our time,‚?Ě she said. ‚??We use new media to educate the public about the humanity of the unborn and investigative journalism to expose threats against the vulnerable and defenseless,‚?Ě she said.
‚??We will be marching with a lot of people we know‚??but, you know everyone knows everyone at the march,‚?Ě she said.
Many LiveAction volunteers march with their schools or church groups, she said.
LiveAction will have its own chalk in the march and will carry signs with ultrasound photos of unborn children, she said. The signs will be captioned with ‚??Future Doctor,‚?Ě ‚??Future Lawyer‚?Ě and ‚??Unborn Couch Potato,‚?Ě as well as others. ‚??The signs are pretty cool.‚?Ě
There is still a LiveAction team in California working on the magazine, social media and youth education and other things, but being in Washington gives LiveAction access to Congress and the media it did not have before, she said.
Rose said she is especially mindful that this is the first march since the August passing of Nellie J. Gray, the activist who started the March for Life in 1974, one year after the Supreme Court‚??s Jan. 20, 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which struck down many state and federal abortion restrictions, lifting government protection from unborn children.
‚??Nellie Gray left behind a very powerful legacy for us,‚?Ě she said. ‚??We will remember her conviction that we should not make a compromise in this fight and that human life must be completely protected by the law, no matter the circumstances of her production or anything else,‚?Ě she said.
‚??That spirit is carrying on,‚?Ě she said.
Record crowds are expected for both the march and the Youth Rally and Mass for Life at the Verizon Center before the march, she said.
‚??Even though there are 40 years of Roe, there is so much more to be done,‚?Ě she said. ‚??Especially, when it comes to exposing the abuses of the abortion industry.‚?Ě