Human Rights

Moments with Alveda King and tearful prayers for Inauguration Day

Carrying on her uncle’s legacy, for everyone.

Alveda-KingDr. Alveda King, daughter of the late Rev. A.D. King and niece of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is a committed leader in the fight against abortion. She is a minister, a civil rights activist, and the director of African-American outreach for Priests for Life.

I remember the first time I met Alveda at a pro-life event in Atlanta, GA.  She was speaking alongside a mutual friend and black pro-life activist, Catherine Davis. Davis was influential in putting up eighty billboards in Atlanta that declared, “Black children are an endangered species.”

I was living in Georgia at the time and working to reach the black community with truth about abortion. When I first heard Dr. Alveda King speak, I was moved by her passion and courage. Later, when I met her, I felt honored to encounter a woman who has come from a family so devoted to fighting for justice.

Over the years, I’ve had many encounters with Alveda King. We are now both speakers for the National Black Pro-Life Coalition. One of my  most memorable memories with her was at Morehouse University, her uncle Martin’s former college. Morehouse, the historically black men’s university, has a statue of Dr. MLK  Jr. on their campus. Alveda and I were both there for a debate on the topic of abortion. Catherine Davis shared statistics regarding abortion’s impact on the black community. Alveda testified to the pain abortion brings to women. The debate was emotionally heated.

When I shared my story of surviving abortion, a pro-choice professor had the audacity to tell me that if my mom had aborted me, perhaps she would have had a boy, or a child she preferred over me. His insulting words showed that my individual life had little value to him. At one point in the night, an angry student voiced his disapproval of Alveda’s words. The tension in the atmosphere led me to walk to the back of the room and pray. As I sat there, I began to cry. I wondered how a university who honors the dreams of the late Dr.King could now reject the words of truth his niece brought to them.

Alveda King has important words for our nation. Her convicting message is this: “How can my uncle’s dream survive if we murder the children?” Alveda prays for our president. President Obama was inaugurated today for this second term. He took the oath of office using Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s and Abraham Lincoln’s Bible.

Alveda told Newsmax she had “mixed emotions” about her uncle’s Bible being used. She said:

I really hope that when the president — and those who handle the Bible — I hope they just, even if they just accidentally slip it open, to where it says “choose life,” or “God hates the shedding of innocent blood” or something like that, I’m hoping it will just reverberate, shake them up a little bit. … I know that the Bible was a gift from God and God does not teach us to deny anybody access to the Bible, and if they’re not going to use it for the right purposes, I’ll be praying for their hearts.

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a great man who sacrificed his life to fight for justice. Though I admire him, I don’t agree with everything he said – specifically regarding his views on overpopulation and support of Margaret Sanger’s work. Nevertheless, he set an example for all of us to follow. King may have been deceived into thinking Sanger was a leader who could truly help his people. Perhaps if he was alive today, he would denounce the work of Planned Parenthood. We will never know. What we do know is that King said this: “The Negro cannot win if he is willing to sell the future of his children for his personal and immediate comfort and safety.” Those words ring true today.

America is a beautiful nation. We have unlimited potential and endless possibilities for our citizens. I am proud to belong to this country. Yet at the same time, I weep for America. I wept as I watched the inauguration. The abolitionists of old understood that slavery is a bloody stain on the soil of America. I believe that abortion is a hideous injustice in a land that values freedom. We will never be the nation God desires us to be as long as we continue to slaughter our sons and daughters. America will not truly prosper until we earnestly fight for the rights of the weakest and most vulnerable among us. This is our duty as citizens; this is our heavenly call.

I am thankful for leaders like Alveda King who openly declare the evils of abortion. I pray for many more like her to come forth from the black community and our nation. I pray for President Obama to not only admire Lincoln  but follow in his footsteps by releasing an “Emancipation Proclamation”-like act that would acknowledge the dignity of the unborn and protect their rights. This is the dream I fight for.

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