Recently 80 Pro-life anti-abortion billboards have been leased aiming at the black community. The slogan “Black Children are an endangered species’ has attracted attention on both sides of the issue. Is this typical right wing scare tactics or is the conspiracy theory method of wiping out the “Black” race coming true? Is it an issue of a woman’s right to choose, an issue of religious preference, or is it the diabolical plot to kill an already wounded people?
Data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that black women get almost 40 percent of the country’s abortions, even though blacks make up only 13 percent of the population. Nearly 40 percent of black pregnancies end in induced abortion, a rate far higher than for white or Hispanic women.
Anti-abortion advocates say the procedure has always been linked to race. They claim Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger wanted to eradicate minorities by putting birth control clinics in their neighborhoods, a charge Planned Parenthood denies.
“The language in the billboard is using messages of fear and shame to target women of color,” said Leola Reis, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of Georgia. “If we want to reduce the number of abortions and unintended pregnancies, we need to work as a community to make sure we get quality affordable health care services to as many women and men as possible.”
Abortion rights advocates are disturbed. Spelman College professor Beverly Guy-Sheftall called the strategy a gimmick.
“To use racist arguments to try to bait black people to get them to be anti-abortion is just disgusting,” said Guy-Sheftall, who teaches women’s history and feminist thought at the historically black women’s college.
“These one-issue approaches that are not about saving the black family or black children, it’s just a big distraction,” she said. “Many black people don’t know who Margaret Sanger is and could care less.”
What’s your opinion?