Civil Rights and Pro-Life Movements linked Print
Written by Mary C. Uhler   
Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016 -- 12:00 AM
Most important civil right

Fr. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, and Dr. Alveda King, director of African-American outreach for the organization, highlighted the link between the two movements in a statement issued on Martin Luther King Day in Atlanta. Dr. Alveda King is the niece of Dr. King.

Father Pavone and Dr. Aveda King said in their statement, “No other civil rights issue of our day is more important than securing the right to life for the human beings still in their mother’s womb. This day’s celebrations here in Atlanta and nationwide will stir us to an even deeper commitment to make that the top priority for this year and for the upcoming elections.”

“Abortion and racism are evil twins, born of the same lie,” said Dr. King. “Where racism now hides its face in public, abortion is accomplishing the goals of which racism only once dreamed. Together, abortionists are destroying humanity at large and the black community in particular.”

Abortion in black community

Research indicates that Dr. Alveda King’s statement is sad but true. Minority women constitute only about 13 percent of the female population (ages 15 to 44) in the United States, but they undergo approximately 36 percent of the abortions. (

According to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, black women are more than five times as likely as white women to have an abortion. On average, 1,876 black babies are aborted every day in the United States.
This incidence of abortion has resulted in a tremendous loss of life. It has been estimated that since 1973, black women have had about 16 million abortions.

Michael Novak had calculated, “Since the number of current living blacks (in the U.S.) is 36 million, the missing 16 million represents an enormous loss, for without abortion, America’s black community would now number 52 million persons. It would be 36 percent larger than it is. Abortion has swept through the black community like a scythe, cutting down every fourth member.”

And Planned Parenthood plays a key role in this tragic situation. Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion provider in our country, but significantly, 78 percent of its clinics are located in minority communities.

Father Pavone and Dr. Alveda King said, “In our day, therefore, we cannot ignore the discrimination, injustice, and violence that are being inflicted on the youngest and smallest members of the human family, the children in the womb. Thousands of these children are killed every day in America by abortion, throughout all nine months of pregnancy.”

Affirm sacredness of all life

They insist that these unborn children deserve justice, equality, and protection. “And we can pursue that goal, no matter what ethnic, religious, or political affiliation we have. None of that has to change in order for us to embrace Dr. King’s affirmation of the sacredness of all human life. It simply means that in our efforts to set free the oppressed, we include the children in the womb.

“We invite all people of good will to join us in the affirmation that children in the womb have equal rights and human dignity.”

I hope the Civil Rights Movement and the Pro-Life Movement will work together to encourage respect for all human life, born and unborn.

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