Please write to the editor in Chicago!

Please write to the editor in Chicago!

The following is a posting to the editor of the Chicago Sun Times in response to a column which is also below. Please write some letters to editors across America in support of the Operation Outrage Campaign!

February 16, 2010

Dear Editor:

I must disagree with Mary Mitchell’s column, “Black women don’t need guilt trip from abortion billboard.”

First of all, the Atlanta billboards that say, “Black children are an endangered species,” are not about guilt, they’re about education. Until now, one of the unspoken facts about the abortion industry has been its targeting of minorities. Surely, Ms. Mitchell is aware that Planned Parenthood continues to place its new, large abortion clinics in minority neighborhoods. Has she not heard the tapes of Planned Parenthood employees in seven states who were only too happy to accept money from donors who said they wanted their money to be used exclusively for decreasing the black population?

Further, Ms. Mitchell mischaracterizes the billboard campaign as being aimed exclusively at women. There is nothing on the billboards or at the website that even implies this. The purpose clearly is to bring awareness to men and women as to what is happening to the African American community. Because of abortion on demand, one-quarter of the black population is now missing. This is not a small matter.

Finally, contrary to what Ms. Mitchell writes, abortion is not so complicated that only God can sort it out. She herself appears to concede that an unborn child is a human being. Do we need any more information to know that abortion is wrong? African Americans were once considered less than fully human under American law, now our babies – and everyone else’s – are treated the same way. We sorted out slavery; we can sort out abortion.

Dr. Alveda King

Black women don’t need guilt trip from abortion billboard
Shame of abortions is burden of entire black community

February 16, 2010

BY MARY MITCHELL Sun-Times Columnist
There are certain things that only God can sort out. Abortion is one of them.

Although most of us, whatever our religious beliefs, respect a woman’s right to choose, there are others who believe abortion is the taking of human life.

I know better than to tell another woman what to do should she suffer an unwanted pregnancy.

Life can take such twists and turns that during rough periods it takes all of your strength just to keep you going.

And let’s face it: Some of us are so self-centered we can’t handle the detour of an unplanned pregnancy.

Still, I wouldn’t want to point any woman toward an abortion clinic. For some women — in the quiet moments of their regrets — they will hear the cry of that unborn child.

Nor would I want to urge another woman to bring into the world a child that she believes she is unable to take care of.

Thirty-seven years after Roe vs. Wade, the weight of exercising the right to end an unwanted pregnancy is still a personal burden each woman carries alone.

That is why I find the billboard campaign that targets black women with a frightening anti-abortion message disturbing.

The ad, which has gone up across Atlanta, features a beautiful black baby and the words: Black Children Are An Endangered Species.

Honestly, black women can’t catch a break.

Black children are gunned down disproportionately in the streets, and now anti-abortion advocates are suggesting that black women are committing genocide.

These are the facts:

Thirty-seven percent of abortions occur to black women, 34 percent to non-Hispanic white women and 22 percent to Hispanic women, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

Nationally, black women were three times more likely to get an abortion than white women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Women who are most likely to have an abortion are black women ages 18-24 who are either separated or unmarried and have annual incomes of less than $15,000 or have Medicaid.

Women who have never married obtain two-thirds of all abortions, and 60 percent of women who have abortions have at least one child.

Given the single, never-been-married status of so many black women, is it really “shocking” that black women are three times more likely to get an abortion than white women?

I’m not shocked. I’m saddened.

While I applaud the black ministers who are leading the charge to educate black women about the alarming abortion rate, these men are failing to address the root of this problem.

How often are men urged, from the pulpit, to practice safe and responsible sex?

Where are the billboards that urge black men to marry their baby’s mamas so these women see their children as blessings and not mistakes?

The shame of these abortions is the shame of an entire community — not of black women.

Unfortunately, through our laws and policies, we have convinced these young women that an unborn child is not a human being.

And we have persuaded them that there is little difference between the morning after and a few weeks down the road.

But while a much quieter debate, abortion always has been a divisive issue in the African-American community.

In “African-American Women and Abortion,” an essay by Loretta J. Ross that traces the advocacy of black women in the planned parenting movement, the author noted that both the “left” and the “right” aligned themselves against black women when it came to birth control.

“That such disparate forces aligned themselves against African-American women demonstrated that both white bigots and black sexists could find common cause in the assertion of male authority over women’s decision regarding reproduction,” Ross wrote.

Although critics of Planned Parenthood still argue that the group had racist intentions, “[black women] perceived the free services to be in their own best interests,” Ross wrote.

Frankly, young women who end up in an abortion clinic aren’t thinking about politics. They are trying to survive.

The black abortion billboard reflects rhetoric that will cause a commotion.

But it will not change this tragic trend.


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