On Tuesday, the Texas House and Senate gaveled in, officially beginning the first called special session of the 85th Legislature. Texas Right to Life’s legislative team spent the day in the thick of the action, making the most of the 30 day time frame to protect innocent Texans. However, Pro-Life advocates were not the only groups to gather at the Texas Capitol.
At 1 p.m. on the south steps of the Capitol, a number of progressive groups gathered under the banner of “One Texas Resistance” to protest Governor Abbott’s agenda for the special session. Slogans such as “Let my people pee!” and “No anti-trans legislation!” coupled with the message of “Don’t discriminate in the Lone Star State” emphasized the rally’s theme of opposition to legislative measures on the Governor’s call. Signs featuring trees and the caption “Come and take it” were handed out by environmentalists, and several rally attendees spoke of their desire to see school choice legislation fail on the basis of discrimination against special needs children.
Most notably, anti-Life sentiment ran strong among the protesters. Rally participants were encouraged to wear pink to show support for Planned Parenthood, and “Stand with Planned Parenthood” slogans were prominently displayed by every represented organization, from the National Organization for Women to the Communist Party of Texas. Signs declaring “We march for women’s rights” and “We won’t go back!” were a common sight at the rally, and when asked, the impassioned protesters proudly elaborated on their “pro-woman” support for abortion rights. Speakers railed against the “anti-abortion lawmakers” in the Texas Capitol “forcing their extreme agendas onto the majority of Texans who need real solutions, not ideology.”
The so-called “extreme” Pro-Life agenda for special session includes legislation increasing reporting and transparency for abortions, protecting Pro-Life Texans from subsidizing abortion through their insurance premiums and taxpayer dollars, prohibiting state and local government funds from going to abortion providers and their affiliates, and requiring patient consent on most Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) Orders.
The Pro-Life measures being considered in the special session reflect the views of a majority of Texans. Texans know that taking innocent human Life is never a “real solution” to any of our problems, and we reject the harmful ideology of the culture of death promoted by these rally-goers. As loudly as the anti-Lifers may shout, Texas Right to Life will continue to successfully advocate for turning the Pro-Life principles of the grassroots into effective public policy.