SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Thousands of abortion opponents gathered for an annual demonstration on Saturday, the 38th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.

Demonstrators packed Justin Herman Plaza in downtown San Francisco before marching along the Embarcadero in a line that Eva Muntean, co-founder of the San Francisco group Walk for Life West Coast, said stretched for more than a mile. The event last year was attended by as many as 35,000 people, the group estimated.

The police department did not provide an estimate on the crowd size. Officers were on hand to monitor the march, according to police spokesman Albie Esparza. As of mid-afternoon, no disruptions were reported.

Some demonstrators carried signs that read, “Women deserve better than abortion” and “Defend Life.”

“Everybody suffers in the wake of abortion,” the Rev. Brian Walker of the Pro-Life Action Ministries, which has offices in Minnesota and Florida, told the crowd. Walker said his marriage was in “shambles” after his wife had an abortion years ago.

A small group of abortion-rights advocates, including anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, held a counterdemonstration across from the plaza. Christine Sampson, 38, had a sign that read, “Protect Women, Protect Choice.”

The San Francisco resident said she attended in part because she thinks Roe v. Wade is under attack. “It does seem that the tide is turning against a women’s right to choose,” she said.

Protests are planned this weekend throughout the nation. Anti-abortion activists will participate in an annual March for Life rally Monday in Washington, D.C.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (43)
  1. Paulette says:

    What a shame so many women are becoming brainwashed into thinking that “Right to Life” should be forced on others. Those of us who have lived through it all know the importance of a woman’s right to choose. They’re against abortions but I don’t see any of them really stepping up to the plate to take care of all the unwanted children who have already been born into this world because of ideologies like theirs.

    1. dguimo says:

      guess you haven’t checked the waiting line to adopt babies in years, huh?

      1. Retired old guy. says:

        Always a great need for foster parents in every county in California. These are children whoes parents should have practiced abortion but didn’t. Step up to that plate and become a foster parent…but don’t brainwash them into thiinking abortion is not an option and a choice.

    2. kari says:

      Those on the political right are far more likely to adopt “unwanted” children and contribute to charities than those on the political left. If you haven’t seen any of them, perhaps it was because you’re blind to the good acts of those you don’t agree with?

      1. Luda says:

        since when politics determine goodness of one’s heart?

      2. Alexandra Elliott says:

        where did you get that info because its wrong. maybe its easier to afford to take care of kids when you arent paying any taxes. protect a woman’s right to choose.

    3. ctj says:

      abortion is not about the right of a woman to choose. it’s about the right of a fetus. just because a woman carries the fetus doesn’t entitle her to kill the fetus when she deems it inconvenient or interfering with her own plans.
      if women want to have such a ‘right’ to end a life of a fetus, they should choose to be wise up. being responsible should come before claiming a ‘right’ to end life.

      1. Luda says:

        so if a woman finds out that her 2months old fetus might be severely deformed, she has no right to choose abortion? And if so, why is it legal to kill or “end someone’s life”, not just unborn life, during the war?

    4. Mark says:

      Same rationale that blacks are not human – If a person does not believe in slavery they don;t have to buy one. People should have the right to choose

      1. Gina says:

        “Right to choose” always gets a guy off the hook. Man up instead.

    5. Gina says:

      “I don’t see any of them really stepping up to the plate to take care of all the unwanted children…”
      That’s because you aren’t paying attention, but are rather repeating a lie put out by the abortion industry. There are actually MORE pregnancy resource-type centers than abortuaries across the country that help women prenatally and post-natally, without sacrificing children to the knife.

      What the prolife movement is about is encouraging women to acknowledge their FULL beauty; that killing one’s own flesh and blood means that society has failed women, not “freed” them.

  2. Luda says:

    If you think abortion is wrong – don’t do it. But don’t tell me what’s right for me. I can make that decision myself.
    Why don’t they use their energy to protest the war – thousands of living people, adults and children, have died and will die.

    1. lborcz says:

      Why is it assumed that someone who wants to protect defenseless human life in the womb is a right wing Christian conservative, an apologist for the senselessness of the war, or a supporter of the death penalty? Most of us believe that all human beings have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Sound familiar? So shouldn’t this be a legal protection, not reflective of an individual’s ideology. Those that respect life include individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, political affiliations, and religious(or nonreligious) beliefs. .

    2. John Betgeorge says:

      oh how cute, let u decide to murder your own

  3. ctj says:

    whether you believe abortion is right or wrong doesn’t change the fact that abortion does ‘take away’ one’s life, though many claim a fetus is not living until it develops into a baby. it doesn’t take an einstein to figure out that life begins with a ‘heartbeat’. you and i know that a baby’s heart starts beating as early as 8 weeks.

    1. Luda says:

      whether to consider a fetus a living human being, depends on one’s ideology. As far as i know, in the usa, no one can push their ideology on others.
      By the way, heartbeat starts as early as 6 wks.

      1. lborcz says:

        So the value of someone’s life should be dependent on another person’s ideology? Golly. I keep hoping that we will learn something from mankind’s long history of ignoring the humanity of people we want to either exploit or eliminate.

  4. Schoolmen says:

    Why don’t they use their energy to protest the war – thousands of living people, adults and children, have died and will die.

    Tell that to Obummer.

    1. Luda says:

      he is not participating in this discussion. Is he?

  5. bailey says:

    We have a hollocaust of babies killed every year and we as a nation have no clue on how immoral it is. Why would anyone be pro choice? It is legal murder. God knit these babies in the mothers womb. Only God can give and take life.

    1. chris says:

      Who is this “God” person? All I see if you and here you are.. not only trying to tell me what I can or can’t do with my body, but you are trying to evoke your religious beliefs as a human right as well. In the USA, there are several religions.. and there are those who are NOT religious. Hence your argument is invalid for everyone but yourself and those who believe as you do. God Bless and go away 🙂

      1. lborcz says:

        I learned back in 10th grade science that an unborn baby is not part of its mother’s body.. If someone is on life support temporarily, they are not considered to be part of the machine that keeps them alive. Advocates for the unborn include many non religious people who want to prevent people from inflicting their ideologies on the innocent. You can do what you want to your body, but we will fight to help protect the bodies of those who are unable to defend themselves.

      2. Mark says:

        The government has plenty of laws restricting what we can and cannot do with our bodies so I don’t think that argument works very well.

  6. Luda says:

    I’m pro choice. Don’t think ever be able to have abortion myself, especially, that now I’m carrying someone under my heart.
    But I can’t judge other women and won’t take their choices away. Religion can’t dictated the rules. And if only God can give and take life, then any kind of killing should be illegal, not just of unborn babies.

    1. lborcz says:

      Finally. A point we can agree on. Killing should be illegal. Interesting that you are carrying “someone” under your heart, while arguing that a fetus is a living human being only based on one’s ideology.

    2. Orange Man says:

      Except in the case where the State choses to execute someone. Then it’s alreight to kill someone.

      1. Jenine says:

        Difference between guilt and innocence.

  7. Wake up says:

    Legal or illegal women will continue to have abortions, as they have for centuries. To think that by making them illegal, women will stop having them is ignorant. The big difference is that if abortions are illegal the people that will be affected are low-income women. They won’t be able to afford to go to another country to have one, and will instead be having back alley abortions. My Grandmother lost her older sister to one of these abortions. Her sister was forced in to having one, because her husband told her they could not afford another child; They had three. She was told that if she didn‘t have an abortion, he would leave her. It was during the depression, and if he left the family would have starved. There was no welfare during that time and she had no way to support the family without him. Did she have a choice? The ironic end of the story, is that he had two more children with his next wife. I do have a solution to the abortion issue. Instead of a DNC procedure, they could start lavaging the fetuses out of the host uterus and implanting them in any of the right to lifer’s that want to step-up. If this really is about saving lives, then put your uterus where your rhetoric is…unless of course it’s really about making yourself feel superior, in which case, rant on.

    1. lborcz says:

      Since you have the longest comment posted in this discussion, it might appear to some that you are indeed, “ranting.” Of course, since you feel low income women should abort their children so they won’t burden the rest of us, your ranting is not surprising. If all the money spent to execute prisoners, or fight wars against other countries, were spent on helping reduce poverty and assisting families with challenging pregnancies, wouldn’t the world be a better place?

      1. Wake up says:

        I’m sorry if my long “rant” confused you, but no where in my statement did I say that I thought poor women should have abortions. What I stated was that making abortion illegal would not stop abortion, and that poor women would be the ones that would end up paying the price, usually with their lives. As for your comment, yes Utopia would be a great place to live.

    2. bailey says:

      It is called adoption.

    3. jenine says:

      Sounds like you are justifying murder to me.

  8. Retired old guy says:

    Luda please “abort any future comments. If you can’t say it in one shot then quit already.

  9. GRAPEVINE says:

    Luda, obviously you never had an abortion not only is it killing an unborn, but the woman is affect with psychological problems for the rest of her life. Most woman admit they made a wrong choice and regret it later. What about the right that can not speak up for themselves, just like dogs and cats, LUDA who will speak up for you when you get to the judgment throne in HEAVEN, you also have a free choice there as well, why regret you decision in hell when you can have Heaven

  10. Sharron Flynn says:

    Those who believe that the unborn are not people with rights, STOP talking about soul-mates. You cannot have both ways. If the unborn are with out a soul, then no one has one and we are just animals, survival of the fitest, dog eat dog.

    1. lborcz says:

      To me it always seems like a human rights issue. Of course babies are dependent on their mothers to nourish them and keep them safe. Birth is more of a change of address for an infant , they do not become living beings at this point; they have outgrown the womb and need to relocate. They have been alive and growing for months. Babies cannot survive even after they are born without continuous care, feeding, and shelter. Why are they protected after birth, but not before.? And should being “wanted” give some unborn children more of a right to life than those who are “unwanted?’

  11. Chris says:

    Im personally for a bigger issue here.. and that is not for allowing the government to tell its population how to exercise their morality. I appreciate the work they do to protect our health, but please draw the line there and improve it.

  12. joe says:

    One thing i know is.. You will never see a latino in one of those clinics, La Raza would have a cow!!

  13. Baby mama... says:

    My comment will be short and simple. Be bless you can have kids for those who can concive and pray for the right decision a young lady or women decides. Like our parents use to say its your body and you can choose to have sex or not. Its your choice. You can choose to wait till marriage or not but its your body. so let who wants pro life goes with pro life and let those who choose to go another route be their journey. Iv made many mistakes in my life and it goes both ways like wow this could be the next president or wow how am i going to care and feed my child let alone im a child. Fyi. Adoption agency are full of obstecles…. You have to have a right amount of income mental stability and so forth…. So kidds who want to be adopted dont.

  14. Eugenia says:

    Legalized abortion was supposed to end “unwanted” children; rather, it’s increased them.
    Legalized abortion was supposed to “free” women; rather, they’ve become enslaved to the whims of irresponsible men, increased breast cancer rates, increased infertility, five-fold increase in STDs, breakdown in families and thus more out of wedlock births (ironically), increased depression in women… These are all easily supported by statistics. I encourage you all to look it up.

    Abortion doesn’t mean women have “choice,” it means they’ve made their own bodies and their own children their enemies.

  15. Erica says:

    It is interesting the article didn’t mention that Abby Johnson, the former director of a Planned Parenthood gave a pep talk to the crowd! She was in those trenches from a very powerful perspective. She witnessed the child trying to move away from the abortionists cannula. The truth is a powerful thing, it changed her life.
    Read her book, “Unplanned”.
    Mothers, you don’t have to kill your children! Love them. Let them live. If you’ve ever had an abortion, there is help to heal in a program called Rachel’s Vineyard. A mother is meant to protect and lay down her life for her child. That’s true love. All this “choice” stuff is a bunch of hooey. What about the choice of the daughter in the womb?

  16. dave says:

    It is truly amazing that these people who are against abortion will not help to feed nor educate any of these children once they are born.

    if we are going to make these women have these children, then we should be wiling to feed, educate and send these children to school at taxpayers expense.

    If we are going to make these women have these children then we as a society should make sure that all of these children health care needs, clothing and all aspects of their lives taken care of until they are at least 25 years of age.

    The day one of these so call pro-lifers will even adopt one these unwanted children , then we as a society will start putting our money where our mouth is.

Leave a Reply