African-American Pro-Life Leaders Will Hold Summit on Abortion in Philly

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 4, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

African-American Pro-Life Leaders Will Hold Summit on Abortion in Philly Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 4
, 2006

Philadelphia, PA ( — Several leading African-American pro-life advcoates will band together and hold a national summit on abortion and other topics in Philadelphia. Organizers say the city is an appropriate place for the conference because nearly half of all black babies in pregnancies there in 2002 were victims of abortion.

The event will feature prominent African-American clergy and medical professionals on October 8 and 9 and the "Summit for Life" is meant to rally and organize black Americans to stand against abortion.

The Life Education And Resource Network is sponsoring the rally at the Greater Exodus Baptist Church, where The Rev. Herb Lusk is the host pastor.

Lusk, famous for his role as the praying tailback of the Philadelphia Eagles in the late 70s, said in a statement obtained, "It is time for these issues to come to the forefront of discussion in the Black community."

The Rev. Johnnie Hunter, Rev. Clenard Childress, Dr. Alveda King and Star Parker are among the presenters for this weekend’s conference.

Childress said he and other black pro-life advocates are upset by comments made at a recent conference by African-American leaders who said abortion isn’t an issue for black Americans.

"We are all appalled by the statements made by Al Sharpton, Jessie Jackson and Joseph Lowery at their Dallas pastors event," Childress said. "How can any Black leader say that abortion is irrelevant to the Afro-American community?"

Childress said abortion targets the black community "more than any other ethnic group in the country."

He points to Census Bureau data showing that African-Americans are below the birth replacement rate for the first time in US history.

Childress explained that "15 million Afro-Americans have been killed by abortion since 1973. That represents over a third of the present Afro-American population. Can 15 million Afro-American lives be irrelevant?"

"The Dream of Martin Luther King means nothing to a dead baby," Hunter added. "We have failed to give our children the one thing Martin Luther King wanted most. The right to live out our dreams"

Polls show a majority of black Americans take a pro-life position on abortion.

In August of 2004, in a survey sponsored by Pace University and Rock the Vote, 54% of all Americans declared themselves pro-life while just 44% said they supported legal abortion. However African-American voters took a pro-life position by a larger 59% to 42% margin.

"There has been great inroads in the Afro-American community but there still is away to go," Hunter says. Having a gathering like this a few years ago was unheard of. Our efforts are beginning to pay off and that means more lives will be saved."

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