Alveda King, the niece of civil rights advocate Martin Luther King Jr., continues her uncle’s legacy by fighting for the rights of unborn babies across the world.
King’s advocacy comes from a very personal conviction. Before she was born, her mother considered aborting her.
Catholic News Agency reports King shared her story this week in Rome ahead of the conference “Promoters of Humanity in a Transforming World.” King is Protestant, but she shared her pro-life work at the Catholic conference, as well as with Pope Francis.
The report details her story:
When it comes to her own advocacy, life issues have always hit home for King, whose parents in 1950 became pregnant with her before they were married.
At the time, The Negro Project launched by Margaret Sanger in 1939 was continuing to gain steam. Among other things, the project worked to promote contraception and abortion in the black community.
King said her parents had considered getting an abortion until her grandfather, Martin Luther King Sr., “prophetically” intervened. Though they didn’t have ultrasound machines at the time, King said her grandfather had strongly rejected the claim that the fetus was “just a lump of flesh.” He said that the baby was a granddaughter whom he had seen in a dream three years prior.
After hearing Martin Luther King Sr. describe how his granddaughter would look, Alveda King’s parents decided against the abortion and she was born in 1951.
Despite her own life being saved, King said she grew up and aborted two unborn children herself. They are decisions that she now profoundly regrets. She said her grandfather eventually influenced her journey to become pro-life.
When she became pregnant again after her two abortions, King said her grandfather urged her to choose life for her child.
“That’s not a lump of flesh, that’s my great-grandchild,” she said he told her.
King said her grandfather’s words affected her profoundly, especially after she saw her unborn baby’s heartbeat on a sonogram.
“I heard with new ears injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere,” King said, repeating her famous uncle’s words. “He also said the Negro cannot win if he’s willing to sacrifice the future of his children for immediate comfort and safety.”
King has been an advocate for the rights of unborn babies since 1983, according to the report. She focuses especially on the black community, which has a disproportionately high abortion rate.