The Rev. Corey Brooks called on anti-abortion activists to take their fight into the black community Sunday as thousands prepared to march on a brutally cold day through the streets of Chicago.
“No longer will we stand on the sideline and let these abortions happen in our community and be silent while babies go unborn,” Brooks said during an afternoon rally at Federal Plaza. “But we are going to take a stand. And that stand starts right now.”
Brooks, the pastor of New Beginnings Church of Chicago on the South Side, made his comments before the annual March for Life Chicago, marking the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that established a constitutional right to abortion. He told the crowd that, even though the black community makes up 12.6 percent of the population, it participated in 30 percent of abortions in 2008.
“More than 16 million African-American unborn babies have died from legalized abortion,” Brooks said. “Which suggests that the current black population of 39 million would have been more than a third larger without abortion. This scourge is the leading cause of death for African-Americans.”
Thousands of chilly activists marched through the Loop after the rally that featured comments by Brooks, Archbishop Blase Cupich and others. The activists huddled together, danced and jumped in the air as they tried to stay warm. The march wound through the downtown streets until the activists eventually wound up back at Federal Plaza.
“This isn’t cold,” Cupich told them before they marched. “This is Chicago.”
Cupich told the crowd he hoped they would recapture “the soul of our nation” with the annual march.
“We want to make sure that, even though it’s so very cold out here today, that there is warmth in our hearts and should be in the entire world for the unborn child,” Cupich said.