The New York Times thinks legalized abortion fixes problems in the Black community. It doesn’t.


The pro-life movement counts among its leaders many Black American luminaries. Yet you would never know it by reading a recent New York Times piece titled, “When ‘Black Lives Matter’ is Invoked in the Abortion Debate.”

To justify linking legalized abortion to the interests of the Black community, the NYT uses a public relations approach dating back to Planned Parenthood’s eugenicist founder Margaret Sanger, finding abortion-friendly clergy in the Black community and using them to spread the pro-abortion message.

From Sanger’s playbook in 1939 to the New York Times in 2019 

In a December 1939 letter, Sanger suggested co-opting Black American ministers to obscure the ugly reality of her mission: “We do not want word to get out that we want to exterminate the Negro population and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.”


True to Sanger’s form, the NYT piece cherry picks two Black American ministers in favor of legalized abortion, Rev. Clinton Stancil and Rev. Michael Jones. The author paints the men as visionaries who appreciate the importance of legalized abortion, yet in reality the two ministers echo the usual flawed “Christian” arguments for legalized abortion.

For instance, Rev. Stancil gives a variation of the bodily autonomy argument: “As much as I believe with all my heart about the killing, the taking of innocent lives, I also believe that I will never support giving white legislators who have no interest in our community the ability to tell our women what they can do with their bodies.”

The article also cites Rev. Jones who argues that, although personally opposed, he does not “have the power to take away that choice.” Rev. Jones’s ministry is essentially indifferent to the plight of the preborn: “We’re really concentrating on meeting the needs beyond the birth of a child.” Yet as pro-life activist Eunice Kennedy Shriver argued, setting the interests of the preborn in the womb against those who have already been born is a fallacy. We can and we must fight for both.

Planned Parenthood’s legacy of racism, eugenics, and population control

The NYT piece paints a picture of a pro-abortion Black American community, the core argument being that Black Americans require access to abortion to help solve social and economic problems: “Religious teachings may have convinced some African-Americans that life begins in the womb. But having seen firsthand how their communities have been hurt by high incarceration rates, economic disinvestment and a lack of educational opportunities, some have a hard time embracing what they see as one-size-fits-all abortion bans.”

But what do abortion activists really mean when they imply abortion is necessary due to Black Americans’ social and economic problems? On one level, the NYT piece implies that pro-lifers are racist and opposed to the advancement of Black Americans. Abortion activists like Democrat presidential candidates Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker are using this smear with greater frequency, to which Black pro-life leader Roland Warren, President and CEO of the pro-life pregnancy center network Care Net, responded in a scathing video, asserting that the sanctity of human life “knows no color.”

READ: Are Sanger’s eugenic efforts still a hallmark of Planned Parenthood’s mission?

Yet the history of Planned Parenthood’s deep roots in the racist eugenics movement suggests a more sinister reason for the argument that abortion is a solution to Black Americans’ social and economic problems. As Live Action News has documented, Margaret Sanger had many ties to notorious eugenics radicals like Hilda Cornish and Clarence C. Little, and Planned Parenthood to this day has done little to distance itself from Sanger and her racist eugenic convictions.

In reality, the racist eugenics of Planned Parenthood’s early days continues to permeate the abortion industry with a mentality that is tragically alive and well today, including the belief that abortion is legitimate a means to keep crime rates low in minority neighborhoods (hint: it isn’t). In a study using data from the 2010 United States census, Protecting Black Life and the Life Issues Institute documented that “62% of Planned Parenthood abortion facilities are within walking distance (2 miles) of relatively high African American populations.” And billionaires like Warren Buffett and Bill Gates continue to pour countless millions of dollars into “population control” measures that facilitate abortions in minority and Black populations both domestically and abroad.

For decades, abortion activists have tried to convince Black Americans that legalized abortion is vital to solving social and economic problems, but many Black Americans understand the truth. As Ryan Bomberger, Black pro-life activist and president of The Radiance Foundation, said in a video tweeted by Live Action, “What is the ultimate end of racism? Throughout American history, the ultimate end was death. Abortion is death, and [abortion in] the Black community happens five times higher.”

Similarly, up-and-coming pro-life Black leaders like Democrat state legislator from Louisiana, Rep. Katrina Jackson, have not fallen for the deception: “I tell people in my state when they ask me, ‘Why are you a black, female, Democrat lawmaker fighting for life?’ I tell them because I’m a Christian first. And then I tell them that Proverbs say God hates the shedding of innocent blood. There’s no blood more innocent than an unborn child who’s never sinned, who never knew sin, and so for them … we will fight.”

“Like” Live Action News on Facebook for more pro-life news and commentary!

What is Live Action News?

Live Action News is pro-life news and commentary from a pro-life perspective. Learn More

Contact for questions, corrections, or if you are seeking permission to reprint any Live Action News content.

GUEST ARTICLES: To submit a guest article to Live Action News, email with an attached Word document of 800-1000 words. Please also attach any photos relevant to your submission if applicable. If your submission is accepted for publication, you will be notified within three weeks. Guest articles are not compensated. (See here for Open License Agreement.) Thank you for your interest in Live Action News!

To Top