As the new legislative session begins, a rally was held at the Oklahoma State Capitol Feb 7 to celebrate the saving of unborn lives. The public presented state leaders roses to represent the sanctity of life of the unborn.
The roses serve as an opportunity for the leaders to see how anti-abortion and pro-life legislation are important to the people of Oklahoma. According to Gov. Mary Fallin, Oklahoma is one of the leading states in pro-life legislation and has passed 20 pro-life bills since 2011.
Self-proclaimed “almost” victim of abortion Alveda C. King was the keynote speaker at this year’s Rose Day. King said her mother almost aborted her in 1950. However, after speaking with her grandfather, Rev. Martin Luther King Sr., she decided against it.
“When my momma talked to Rev. King, he said, ‘That baby is not a lump of flesh, that is my granddaughter,’” King said at the rally.
King is the pastoral associate and director of Civil Rights for the Unborn as well as the founder of the Alveda King Ministries. The current number of pregnancy resource centers in the nation outnumber the number of abortion facilities, King said, and thanked Oklahomans for doing their part. Admitting to the audience her prior two abortions, King said she was regretful, but the Lord had forgiven her and she now looks forward to meeting her children in heaven.
Megan Peters, a junior at Oklahoma Christian University, said she believes abortion is murder, and taking the life of someone who cannot speak for themselves is wrong. Abortion could have cost her father his life and he might not be here today if abortion was as accessible then is it is today, Peters said.
“My dad was given up for adoption when he was born,” Peters said. “He was placed in a great family, and because of his story, I want to adopt.”
As a college student, Peters said she hopes the conversation for pro-life will be open instead of people shying away from it. The only acceptable way to talk about abortion during this day and age is if you are pro-choice, Peters said. As a pro-life supporter and person of faith, Peters said, however, that even if one decides to have an abortion, she still believes Christians should extend grace toward them and love them.
Over 20 different pregnancy resource centers from different parts of the state gathered at the Capitol to show support on Rose Day and share information. Hope Pregnancy Center, an Oklahoma-based center with five locations across the state, joined others at the Capitol.
Kylee Abel, the volunteer coordinator for Hope Pregnancy Center in Tulsa, began volunteering at the Edmond location when she was in college. Abel said her passion for pregnancy is what led her to a career advocating for the unborn.
“We provide free pregnancy tests and ultrasounds to confirm a pregnancy, as well as provide pregnancy options education,” Abel said. “Every pregnant woman has three viable options for a pregnancy in the state of Oklahoma: parent, adopt or abort. We are pro-life, but our goal is to make the mother feel completely and accurately informed of all the options so she can make her decision.”
Abel said by educating soon-to-be mothers, Hope Pregnancy Center hopes to encourage mothers to make a pro-life choice. She said mothers’ minds have been changed upon seeing their baby in the womb or being informed on abortion procedures.
Fallin said pro-life is extremely personal to her. Two months into her first campaign she thought she had the flu, however, she said she was surprised to find she was pregnant.
“Prior to finding out I was pregnant, I met a lobbyist who asked me my stance on abortion,” Fallin said. “I answered pro-life. He then asked, as a woman running for office, what would happen if I were to get pregnant? Because he said I would never be able to win or run for office.”
Fallin did stay in the race and was eight months pregnant with her second child on election day. Upon closing the ceremony, Fallin also thanked Rev. Anthony Jordan, executive director-treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, who was recognized for his pro-life work. When Jordan was thanking the crowd, he encouraged them to keep fighting.
“When they close the lid on my casket I intend to be saying ‘Save the babies,’” Jordan said.