Martin Luther King Holiday Places Focus on Abortion and Black Americans

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 17, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Martin Luther King Holiday Places Focus on Abortion and Black Americans

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
January 17, 2005

Washington, DC ( — As Americans across the country take time to honor slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., many are focusing on how abortion has adversely affected the African-American community over the last 32 years that it has been legal.

Dr. Alveda King, the late religious leader’s niece, plans to march at the national March for Life and will participate in a separate event with other women who have had abortions and regret their decision.

"I’m post-abortive so I know this, when we abort the child, we violate his or her rights, we as the mothers suffer tremendously, and our families suffer," King said.

King notes that abortion has disproportionately affected the black community. While black women constitute about 13% of the childbearing population, they have over one-third of the abortions.

"I join the voices of thousands across America who can no longer sit idly by and allow this horrible spirit of murder to cut down," King says. "If the Dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is to live, our babies must live."

Since the 1973 Supreme Court decision allowing unlimited abortions, more than 14 million abortions have been performed on black women. The abortion rate of black women is three times higher than that of white women and 60% of African-American women who become pregnant will have an abortion.

Yet, polls show black Americans are pro-life and supporting pro-life candidates in greater margins than before.

In an August survey sponsored by Pace University and Rock the Vote, 54 percent of all Americans declared themselves pro-life while just 44 percent said they supported legal abortion.

However, African-American voters took a pro-life position by a larger 59 to 42 percent margin.

Star Parker, a pro-life advocate and president of the Coalition on Urban Renewal and Education, says there is an increasing desire among African Americans to support pro-life candidates and that it is the beginning of a trend.

"Black pastors and their congregants are waking up to the fact that the liberal agenda that they have been supporting all these years does not liberate but denigrates, dehumanizes, and enslaves," Parker said.

Those pro-life values prompted black Americans to protest a decision by the nation’s largest civil rights group to endorse abortion.

When the NAACP took an official position in favor of abortion in early 2004, which it has since quietly rescinded, a poll conducted by Black Enterprise Magazine found that 60% of African Americans disapproved of the decision.

Meanwhile, King recalls memories of her childhood home in Birmingham, Alabama. It was later bombed by those who hated the civil rights activism of her family.

King says that just as she and her family should have been comfortable and safe in their own home, so should an unborn child feel safe inside of her mother during pregnancy.

Related web sites –
Alveda King –