Planned Parenthood participation or support in any celebration, march or rally honoring Rev. Dr. Martin L. King Jr. is not only insulting, but a slap in the face of this great man, a smear on his dream that all life is precious, and worse of all, Planned Parenthood has the blood of millions of murdered babies, mostly black, on their hands and foreheads.
Lets look at Planned Parenthood’s founder, Margaret Louise (Higgins) Sanger. She is considered the “mother” of the birth control movement in America by establishing various health clinics. Her efforts would eventually lead to today’s Planned Parenthood. All of her work in the area of birth control was during a very contentious and racially charged time in America, dating from the Reconstruction Era well into the ‘50s. Some of her thoughts and beliefs reflected the attitudes of the time concerning Negroes, and she made decisions and assertions that many have construed as racists.
I have studied the life and history of the Planned Parenthood founder for many years reading accounts and reports by those who admire and support her as someone who did not have a racist bone in her body. Other reports and studies reflect just the opposite citing her endeavors as purposely racist as demonstrated by her work on her “Negro Project” and from quotes in her letters that she penned on the subject of birth control and the Negro.
For myself, I am in the latter camp of thinking, but arguments can be made about the following:
1. Sanger said her concern for controlling births of Negroes was more about the economic consequences that their uncontrolled and prolific births presented to the nation’s economy especially in the South as they (Negroes) were the poorest and less educated. They were also the least desirable, like human weeds, having negative effect on the South’s economy as they multiplied. (Smith College, The Margaret Sanger Papers)
2. Others say that the purpose of her Negro Project was to infiltrate the black community by presenting birth control as a “health option” for women to kill off black babies to reduce black population. In a letter to Dr. Clarence Gamble, Mrs. Sanger stated, “We should hire three or four colored ministers to sell the Negro Project because they would be well received by the black population. We do not want the word to get out to blacks that we want to exterminate them. The Negro ministers could stop those kind of thoughts by any of their more rebellious members.” (The National Black Prolife Union)
3. Sanger wrote that she was helping Negroes to control their birth rate, reduce their high infant and maternal death rate, and to maintain better health standards. In other words giving Negroes the opportunity to help themselves. (Black Americans for Life)
4. Yet the patriarchal racism of the times guided many of the social policies regarding the fear of an exploding black underclass rather than promoting the health and sexual liberation of black women. Sanger and many of her friends and partners exhibited strong racist sentiments, some of them arguing for and even carrying out compulsory sterilization only on black women because they were considered to be low intelligence, behaviorally deviant and therefore not capable of choosing not to control their fertility. (Margaret Sanger Papers)
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There is strong argument on the side of those who think of Sanger as a racist who had dubious intentions toward Negroes given the times in which she lived. The Reconstruction period after the Civil War increased hatred and racial division. Most whites were not sympathetic to blacks and looked upon them in an unfavorable light. Not even white women in the South at that time were given concerted health attention from local and state clinics. Given that, it is hard to believe that Sanger and her people would focus on the best interest of black women fresh out of slavery.
Rev. Dr. Martin L. King Jr. once said, “The Negro cannot win as long as he is willing to sacrifice the lives of his children for comfort and safety. How can the ‘dream’ survive if we murder the children? Every baby is like a slave in the womb of his or her mother and she should decide his or her fate.” (Alveda King Papers).
LifeNews Note: Jimmie Hollis is a resident of Millville, New Jersey.