WASHINGTON, D.C., January 22, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Pro-life groups today expressed their grief for the 55 million unborn children aborted since the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion nationwide and renewed their determination that the ruling – which turns 40 today – will not endure for another generation. 

“Today, we remember the 55 million human beings who had the most basic right and freedom tragically stolen from them through abortion, the first right of all -- the right to life,” said Lila Rose of Live Action. “Without the right to life, there are no other rights.”

Bill Donohue of the Catholic League pointed out that before Roe, even Planned Parenthood admitted the deadly nature of abortion. 

“'An abortion kills the life of the baby after it has begun. It is dangerous to your life and health',” quoted Donohue, adding: "Those are not the words of a pro-life activist in 2013—those are the words of Planned Parenthood fifty years ago.

"So what’s changed since 1963? After all, abortion still kills. What’s changed is the decision of Planned Parenthood to float a fiction: it decided that the nascent feminist movement had to include the right of a woman to kill her unborn child."

In a lyrical reflection on the court case, Dr. Charmaine Yoest of Americans United for Life (AUL) observed, “Forty years later, we peer down the corridors of history, and seeing the deaths of so many innocents, echo the despair the poet William Wordsworth so eloquently expressed: 'A simple child/That lightly draws its breath/And feels its life in every limb/What should it know of death!'

Each of those deaths has left an enduring scar on the mothers who survived.

Click "like" if you are PRO-LIFE!

“I think it is time for our country to look back at the Roe v. Wade decision,” said Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood director who now runs And Then There Were None, a ministry to help people leave the abortion industry. “Is this the best we can offer women?  The best thing we can offer a woman in crisis is to kill her child?”

One of those casualties could have been the wife of Ohio state Auditor Dave Yost, who revealed in a statement on the anniversary of Roe that his wife, who was born before the court case, would likely have been aborted were abortion legal at the time.

“We do not know who her birth mother was, or if she is still alive, but this afternoon, I'd like to publicly thank her,” he wrote, “for the burden she did not want but carried anyway; for enduring the pain of her labor; for her courage to complete the adoption.”

“Wherever you are... thank you,” he continued. “You are a hero to me.”

Yost denounced the “cruel and deadly geometry” of abortion, which has impacted multiple generations of missing children and now, their missing children and grandchildren, affecting society in an array of unknown and unknowable ways.

Carol Tobias, the president of National Right to Life, said that Roe v. Wade was "an assault on the very foundation of our country--the principle that life is the most fundamental of all human rights."

But "as the next generation stands up for mothers and their unborn children, we know that the days of Roe are numbered," she added.

While the nation skewed more toward supporting the "pro-choice" cause shortly after the Supreme Court decision, recent public opinion polls show a growing swell of support for regulations on abortion that go well beyond those allowed by Justice Blackmun's 1973 decision.

“We are advancing the winning formula for reversing Roe,” said Dr. Yoest. AUL worked with 39 states in 2012 to pass 19 pro-life measures that protect the unborn, and their mothers. 

Yoest said AUL “is undermining a flawed and fatal decision that has led to the deaths of more than 55 million unborn children and harmed a generation of women. AUL has a winning legal strategy that is gathering momentum and overtaking a losing proposition.”

Pro-life leaders said that until the unborn are welcomed in life and protected in law, Roe will remain a source of ongoing pain for mothers and their children.

“Neither favorable pro-life public opinion polls, nor studies and speeches decrying abortion give comfort to the unborn child facing the abortionist’s knife and forceps or death by chemicals,” said Richard Thompson, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Law Center.

“We must decide to create a future where women are protected from exploitation, where all citizens of this country, whether born or unborn are treated with dignity, and where our laws and our way of life undergird the responsibility we have to protect one another,” agreed Dr. Yoest.

Meanwhile, TFP Student Action reminded the pro-life movement that all efforts to end abortion must deal with the underlying culture of prevalent, promiscuous sex – and must rely upon the blessings of Providence for their ultimate success.

“May God help us as a nation to reverse Roe v. Wade, eradicate 40 years of lies, defeat the sexual revolution and return to virtue, truth, and chastity," said the pro-life organiztion.