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Monday marked the 39th anniversary of Roe v Wade. While most local anti-abortion big shots were doing their annual March for Life in Washington with accompanying photo ops, Greater Columbus Right to Life held down the fort here with a 45 minute rally on the steps of the Statehouse with few photo ops.

Except for me, Channel l0 appeared to be the only local media covering the event, but there's nothing on the station's news site. With Occupy Columbus camped out on the corner of S. High and E State, I was imagining interesting possibilities, but the occupiers, unlike their Washington DC counterparts who disrupted a “youth event “held by anti-abortion moguls Brian Kemper, Patrick Mahoney , Lila Rose and friends, decided to sit this one out..

I’ve attended several of these January outdoor events in the last few years. Usually, within 10 minutes my fingers, even in two pairs of gloves, are ready to call it off. This year, however, the temperature was in the lower 50s and the crowd knew it. About 175 adults and a couple dozen small children celebrated as Grove City State Rep and keynoter Cheryl Grossman (R H23) ran off a list of abortion-curbing bills that either passed last year or are now in the hopper. Ohio ProLife Action's Heartbeat Bill (HB 125), which aims to ban virtually all abortion in the state, got special props. While Ohio Right to Life and Ohio ProLife Ohio duke it out in the press and in the lobby, over turf, GCRTL and Grossman gave big hugs to the state organization and the ProLife Ohio break-offs. .No seams showing..

Speaker Denise Salyers a self-defined "victim of the abortion industry," following the de riguer line of"abortion harms women" described, with great detail and occasional tears, how her 1984 abortion ruined her life with drugs, drinks, and suicide until she was redeemed by God 24 years later.

The rally, as usual, embodied ecumenical catharsis. The Protestant element of Parsley-type exurbanites and parents with neatly turned-out daughters in Modest Apparel jumpers were joined by three nuns uncharacteristically dressed like nuns, and a gaggle of deSales High School jocks and cheerleaders. But this year, adults ran the show. Unlike past January Roe rallies, billed as youth events, there was no throng of girls and boys from Fostoria and Marion comparing Planned Parenthood to Hitler and making euphemistic prayer huddles;.and no middle school adoptees at the podium pimping adoption as a cure for abortion. Strangely, adoption wasn't mentioned at all.


Marley Greiner is a member of the board of the Columbus Institute for Contemporary Journalism. She began writing for the Columbus Free Press in 1980 as a general assignment reporter. For the last few years she has specialized in the activities of local Christian dominionists. A slightly different version of this article , with pictures, and with can be found at her blog Theoconia: A Central Ohio Theocon Report at theoconia. Marley is the Executive Chair of Bastard Nation: the Adoptee Rights Organization,the largest adoptee civil rights organization in North America.