I am excited to head to Milwaukee in a few days, where I have the privilege to serve as one of Alabama’s delegates at the Republican National Convention. However, I was dismayed to learn the "pro-life party" has dramatically watered down many of our conservative principles in the new Republican platform, especially around protecting life. 

While I wholeheartedly support President Trump and many of the vital aspects of our platform, such as border security, energy independence, stopping the weaponization of government against its citizens, and pro-growth economic policies, I cannot help but feel disappointed by the Republican National Committee's (RNC) decision to minimize protecting life while championing cryptocurrency. 

The Republican Party has long been known as the "pro-life party.” The previous GOP platform was clear and unwavering on the issue of life. It stated unequivocally: "[T]he unborn child has a fundamental right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to children before birth." This bold language left no doubt about where Republicans stood: committed to protecting the most vulnerable among us, the unborn. 

The 2024 platform presents a stark contrast. Instead of the firm stance of 2020, the new language is vague and tepid. It reads: 

We proudly stand for families and Life. We believe that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States guarantees that no person can be denied Life or Liberty without Due Process, and that the States are, therefore, free to pass Laws protecting those Rights. After 51 years, because of us, that power has been given to the States and to a vote of the People. We will oppose Late Term Abortion, while supporting mothers and policies that advance Prenatal Care, access to Birth Control, and IVF (fertility treatments). 

While these words are commendable, they lack the clarity and conviction that once defined the Republican party. There is a glaring absence of an appeal for strong protection of all life or specific legislative goals to protect unborn children. 

This shift is deeply troubling. As a conservative evangelical, my commitment to protecting life is rooted in my faith and the belief that every life is precious and deserving of protection. The decision to dilute our pro-life stance is not just a political misstep; it is a moral failing. It signals a retreat from our core values at a time when we should be standing firm. 

Some members of the RNC platform committee have justified this change by citing the Supreme Court's Dobbs ruling overturning Roe v. Wade. While Dobbs was a significant victory for life, it does not mean our work is done. It underscores the need for continued vigilance and advocacy. The Dobbs decision returned the issue of abortion to the states, making it even more critical for the Republican Party to maintain a robust national stance on protecting life. All life is precious and should be protected from conception to natural death. 

The contrast between the two platforms is not just about words but the message Republicans send to supporters and the country. The 2020 platform was a clear declaration of Republican commitment to life. It was a rallying cry for those who believe that every child, born and unborn, deserves a chance at life. The 2024 platform, on the other hand, feels like a concession, a step back from our principles in favor of political expediency. 

Some may argue that this shift is necessary to appeal to a broader electorate. But we can broaden our appeal without compromising our core values. The strength of the Republican Party has always been its principles, not its willingness to bend to the whims of the moment. Our commitment to life is not just a policy position; it reflects who we are as a party and a movement. 

Seeing the RNC minimize protecting life while championing cryptocurrency is particularly disheartening. However, I am encouraged by the strong aspects of the 2024 platform, such as our commitment to border security, election integrity, ending the left-wing gender insanity, and strong pro-growth economic initiatives. These issues resonate with many Americans and the Republican Party has demonstrated strong leadership in most of the platform. However, that platform should reflect our priorities, and protecting life should always be at the top. 

As we head to Milwaukee, I urge my fellow delegates to consider the importance of maintaining a strong pro-life stance. We have an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to protecting the unborn and to send a clear message that the Republican Party stands for life. Let us not shy away from this responsibility. Let us be bold and unyielding in our defense of the most vulnerable. 

President Trump has shown strong leadership and vision for our country. His policies have brought significant economic growth, strengthened national security, and restored American pride. But as Republicans support his candidacy, they must also hold fast to party principles. 

The Republican Party has always been at its best when it stands firm on its values. Our commitment to life is a cornerstone of our identity, and we must not allow it to be diluted. As we gather in Milwaukee, let us remember the words of Proverbs 31:8-9: "Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy." 

We have a duty to protect the unborn, to stand for life, and to ensure that the Republican platform reflects our unwavering commitment to this cause. Let us be a party that speaks for those who cannot speak for themselves. Let us be a party that stands for life. 

Let us seize this opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to life and to stand boldly for the principles that define us as Republicans and as Americans. 

Gerrick Wilkins is the author of Unshackling Democracy, a former congressional candidate, automotive consultant and Alabama delegate to the Republican National Convention.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819News.com.

Don't miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.