Thousands attend pro-life, pro-marriage rally at Capitol

More than 5,000 Oklahomans packed the south lawn of the State Capitol on October 25 to call for an end to abortion in Oklahoma.

With a rallying cry of, “Legally we can!  Morally we must!,” the crowd heard a list of speakers.

“There is a belief that somehow government shifts nations,” U.S Senator James Lankford, R-Oklahoma, told the crowd.  “Not so in our government.  The people shift the government, the government does not shift the nation.  So this is a rising up.”

The rally, organized by the group Protect Life and Marriage Oklahoma, was meant to set an example for every state legislature in the United States to stand up to the “illegal edicts of a renegade Supreme Court.”

For some lawmakers, the abortion issue is personal as well as political.

“In 1973, a little boy was conceived.  His mother was 17 years old,” said State Sen. Kyle Loveless, R-Oklahoma City.  “She literally sat in the parking lot of an abortion clinic and considered aborting him.  She flipped a coin several times and finally decided not to.  That boy grew up to be me.  We have a moral imperative to stand up and fight and do everything we can to give every child a chance at life.”

By networking with church leaders across the state, Protect Life and Marriage Oklahoma has gathered tens of thousands of signatures for its online petition.  Each signature is a call to end abortion in Oklahoma and uphold the lawfully amended Oklahoma Constitution which defines marriage as one man and one woman (under the Defense of Marriage Act).  More than 40 lawmakers and 775 pastors have signed the petition.

“We stand firmly against abortion and same-sex marriage but this movement goes beyond those two issues,” says Paul Blair, organizer of the rally.  “Washington does not have unlimited power and it is not up to them to determine the limits of their power.  We believe the U.S. Constitution gives the people in each state the right to decide these policies for themselves.  That’s why we have a 10th Amendment to the Bill of Rights.  Liberal states can be liberal and conservative states can be conservative.  The voters of each state should decide their own laws regarding these issues, and any issue, not explicitly granted to the federal government in the Constitution.”

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