Mike Huckabee Compares Abortion to Slavery, NAACP Leader Upset by Remarks
by Steven Ertelt
March 24, 2009
Jefferson City, MO (LifeNews.com) — Former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee compared abortion to slavery during a speaking engagement at a recent pro-life event. However, his comments are drawing criticism from a leader of the NAACP, the nation’s largest civil rights group.
During a Monday speech for the Missouri-based Vitae Caring Foundation, which creates and sponsors pro-life television advertisements across the country, Huckabee made the remarks.
Huckabee said that, when the United States abolished slavery, it got rid of the concept that one person had the powerful life and death decision over another.He said such a decision was wrong when it came to slavery and equally wrong with regard to abortion.
"What are we saying to the generation coming after us when we tell them that it is perfectly OK for one person to own another human being?" Huckabee said.
"I thought we dealt with that 150 years ago when the issue of slavery was finally settled in this country, and we decided that it no longer was a political issue, it wasn’t an issue of geography, it was an issue of morality," Huckabee added. "That it was either right or it was immoral that one person could own another human being and have full control even to the point of life and death over that other human being."
He said civilization cannot survive if "one group of people have life and death control over another for no particular reason other than their own conveniences and, in that case, prejudices."
Missouri NAACP President Mary Ratliff was upset by the speech and told the Associated Press the abortion-slavery comparison was "’apples to oranges."
She called it "offensive" to use slavery to make a point about another political issue.
"It seems to me now that when folks want to object to some kind of morality type of issue, they want to attach it to slavery," Ratliff told AP.
Huckabee has made the abortion-slavery comparison before.
Huckabee was the governor of Arkansas prior to launching a bid for the Republican nomination for president in 2008. He ran a surprisingly strong campaign and is seen as a potential top-tier candidate for the GOP nomination in 2012 against pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
During the campaign, he told Fox News that abortion shouldn’t just be a state issue and discussed how slavery was abolished at the federal level.
"Well, its the logic of the Civil War," Huckabee said at the time. "If morality is the point here, and if its right or wrong, not just a political question, then you can’t have 50 different versions of whats right and whats wrong."
"Can you have states saying slavery is OK, other states saying its not?" he continued. "If abortion is a moral issue–and for many of us it is, and I know for others its not. So if you decide that its just a political issue, then thats a perfectly acceptable, logical conclusion. But for those of us for whom this is a moral question, you can’t simply have 50 different versions of whats right."
Black pro-life advocates have had issues with the NAACP over abortion before.
Rev. Clenard Childress, a New Jersey pastor, and a leader of the black pro-life group LEARN, protested the 2008 national convention of the NAACP.
Childress says that, historically, the NAACP "has failed to address the concerns of many of its delegates about abortion."
He pointed to a 2004 resolution voicing support for equal access to abortion and urging its members to participate in a pro-abortion rally in Washington. Then, in 2007, the NAACP, for the second time in four years, blocked a proposed resolution expressing opposition to abortion.
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