Abortion Awareness Month in the Black Community

What is the leading cause of death in the African American Community? Ask this question of most people or even post it in Google and answers like this come forth: Heart Disease, Diabetes, Cancer, Crime and so forth. But the leading cause by far is (you guessed it) Abortion. Look at this graph:

You can see it’s not even close. Abortion is huge killer for Black Americans as it is in any other ethnic group. Why is there a special month for awareness of abortion in the Black Community?  African American women comprise about 12% of women in this country but over 30% of  Abortions are  performed on Black  women.  There are many reasons for this including poverty and the fact that the Black Community was targeted many decades ago by Margaret Sanger, founder of “Planned Parenthood” in her so-called “Negro Project.” Planned Parenthood clinics are  especially present even to this day in Black and other Minority Neighborhoods. This month is therefore set aside in African American Catholic Parishes and some more sympathetic Protestant Denominations as a month to consider the huge toll abortion has taken in the African American community. Here on the blog I hope to provide a number of articles and insights as well. Pray to end abortion. Pray that people will want and find alternative to abortion.

25 Replies to “Abortion Awareness Month in the Black Community”

  1. I appreciate it, this was a very informative entry. I think that everyone must come here because policies are very important to study. Thanks once again!

  2. I think the graph would be similar for all peoples, right? Abortion is the biggest killer. I am praying to end the senseless killing of our babies. When I write about this on my blog, people are silent. I was very much discouraged but my husband continues to encourage me to write because people are still reading and it could make a difference.

    Father Frank Pavone has a book that shows ordinary folks not to be afraid to do big or little things to end abortion. Even little things, like speaking about it, or have stickers on our cars, etc. can change minds.

    Here’s the link for it on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Ending-Abortion-Not-Just-Fighting/dp/0899421318/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1275445755&sr=8-1

    1. Thanks for the Link to Fr. Pavone’s book. I thnk you are surely right that the graph would look similar for every group. It is really amazing when we consider how concerned we get a bout cancer, heart disease etc (and well we should) becuase they take many lives. But we pay little attention to something that takes far more lives.

  3. Wow…I live in Tucson where Sanger died. Half the population is Hispanic. Across the street from the hospital where I gave birth to my son, sits the abortion clinic, Planned Parenthood. There are about six clinics throughout the city. Most of them are located in poorer areas of town. There isn’t one next to the University, and there isn’t one in the more wealthy parts of town either. It makes me think that they are targeting the poorer populations, which are Hispanic. It also makes me think that they are trying to stay away from areas of higher learning since Sanger thought that we should weed out the “morons” of society. She was all about eugenics, or controlling populations who in her view should be controlled: the poor, the mentally disabled, epileptics, etc. I wasn’t aware of all her wheeling and dealing til you posted this and I read some more info about her. Thank you. I had no idea, and it’s truly alarming. I sometimes see people protesting the clinic across from the hospital. Perhaps I should join them.

    1. Yes, the “Negro Project” was surely an aspect of PP that they like to sweep under the rug. They insist that this is no longer a motive for them. But then, as you observe, where are most PP clinic found. They claim it is because richer and whiter communities will not allow their clinics to be built there. It is a true fact that most affluent communities don’t want Abortion clincis in their “fair” communities.

  4. This is a bit off topic, but recently in the news was the story of the nun who was excommunicated b/c she approved an abortion to save a mother’s life. I realized that I was not totally clear on the Church’s complete position on abortion.

    Certainly I know that it is wrong to do evil so that good may come, but I have to admit, I was a little perplexed in this given situation. It was reported that both mother and the child in her womb would die without intervention. Intervention meant that atleast one would survive. In this situation, is it right to let both die when atleast one could be saved? I’m confused.

    1. A couple relevant points here.

      In what I have read of the case, the condition was not one that absolutely threatened the life of the mother: the abortion was not the only thing – or something necessary – to keep her alive.

      John T. Noonan, Jr. has a very interesting article, “An Almost Absolute Value in History”, in a collection he also edited, ‘The Morality of Abortion: Legal and Historical Perspectives’ (Harvard University Press, 1970): a good library may still have a copy (I do not know if it was often reprinted, updated, etc.) Among other things, he discusses ‘double-effect’ and its possible application to abortion. For example, if a woman is almost certain to die of cancer of the womb before the baby is old enough to be delivered early and survive, can the intended effect of removing the cancerous womb – which would be done if it had no baby in it – still be done if it also has the unintended effect of bringing out a baby who cannot survive?

      Not a few women in such a case have heroically gone untreated (by any ‘dangerous’ chemotherapy, etc.) hoping their baby will be old enough to survive, before the cancer kills them.

  5. I’d love a posting that speaks to anon’s question about the “approved” abortion as well. So many people with whom I discuss abortion use the arguement that some abortions are necessary to save at least one of the two lives at stake. Maybe I’m too naive, but I’ve always believed those in the medical profession are to do their absolute best to save all lives. If they’ve done their best to save both mother and child and one dies, it’s not an abortion. In the example outlined by anon, wouldn’t it be best for the child to be taken out of the womb (albeit prematurely) and taken care of in the same way extremely premature babies are taken care of? Maybe the child wasn’t far enough along for any chance of survival outside the womb.

    At any rate, I would love to hear more thoughts on this subject!

    1. Well it is always wrong to directly intend the death of anyone, let alone a child in the womb. However, there are situations where the death is not directly intended. The most common “life of the mother scenario” involves ectopic pregnancy wherein a conception takes place in the fallopian tube (as it usually does) but fails to descend for some reason and gets stuck. In such cases the fallopian tube is usually removed and it obviosuly results in the death of the fetus. However, such a death is not directly intended and is usually ascribed to double effect. The concept of double effect refers to an action that has two effects, one intended the other not intended though perhaps caused by the action regretably.

  6. Thanks for posting this information Msgr. Pope! Just wanted to let everyone know that the Department of Life Issues and Office for Black Catholics are hosting a “Gospel for Life” event on Sunday June 13th at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church from 4-6:00 pm. The theme for this event — taken from Pope John Paul II’s encyclical The Gospel of Life — is “Singing songs of joy and praise for the priceless gift of life!” In an effort to highlight the beauty and dignity of every life as we observe Abortion Awareness Month in the Black Community, this event will be a celebration of life featuring gospel choirs from the Archdiocese of Washington and guest speakers including Fr. Pat Smith from St. Augustine Catholic Church, Paulette Holloway of Bethany Christian Services and Christopher Rhoades, seminarian. Choirs will be from St. Augustine, St. Catherine Laboure and St. Joseph, Largo.

    The event is free and all are welcome but please register at http://gospelforlife.eventbrite.com for planning reasons. Any other questions, contact me at [email protected].

    A collection of diapers and new or “gently used” baby items will be taken up to benefit local pregnancy centers.

  7. I strongly suggest that anyone interested in this topic get a copy of a stunning 2 hour documentary called: Maafa21 . Maafa21 is the most stunning and “offensive” look behind the eugenic agenda of Black Genocide still going on today. The producers of Maafa21 went directly to the source, researching the information from the papers of Margaret Sanger , Planned Parenthood, their board, and their eugenic supporters. Fully documented quotes and video of the founders and US eugenics society links to Hitler and the Nazis will leave you stunned. Maafa21 shows evidence that Margaret Sanger – founder of Planned Parenthood was a member of the American Eugenics Society , spoke to their meetings, met with their VP’s and also spoke to the KKK (proof in Sanger’s autobiography). In addition, other Planned Parenthood members were Eugenics Society members, including Alan Guttmacher, who was at one time the Vice President of the AES. Maafa21 will leave you asking how Planned Parenthood receives millions of tax dollars a day from the American Government. . Maafa21 will tell you things the media and the government do not want you to hear. This film is not partisan either. Maafa21 shows how both parties are involved in eugenics against the Black Community and includes racist audio of President Nixon explaining why people vote for abortion – any guess? Maafa21 will walk you through history and push you straight into the 21st Century where you will see all the dots connected and this evil and racist Eugenic Plot revealed right in front of your eyes. Get a copy of Maafa21 – here (clip) http://www.maafa21.com

  8. In response to the question of whether an abortion is justified when both lives are endangered:
    How many of you have seen the movie “I, Robot” with Will Smith? One part of the background story has to do with how he lost his arm and why it led to his antipathy toward robots. He is involved in a car crash which is witnessed by a robot. The robot has the choice of saving either him, or a young child. The robot makes the judgement that Will Smith’s character is more likely to survive, and so it saves him. Smith’s thought is that any MAN (as opposed to a thinking machine) would know that you save the child. Why does our society make such a strange distinction about a child before it is born, and after? If any sensible man would sacrifice his own life for the sake of a child, at least hypothetically, then why should it be strange, and even looked down upon, for a mother to sacrifice her life for the sake of her child, just because she can’t see it yet? Of course it is still a hard choice, because we all love our own lives, but it seems to me that the Church’s absolute opposition to abortion is a logical extension of this ethic.

    1. I don’t disagree w/you that it is sensisble that one would sacrifice their own lives for their children (w/in or out of the womb), but if the mother is the incubator for the child and continuing with a pregnancy “breaks” the incubator, the child will die. I’m affected by the heroism of the women about whom I’ve read who have given their children life while sacrificing their own to diseases such as cancer. As I understand it, the mother in this case was in heart failure exacerbated by the strain a pregnancy puts on a woman’s body. I gather time was of the essence, as she was quite ill and couldn’t be moved.

      Ethical and Religious Directives – Directive 47
      “Operations, treatments, and medications that have as their direct purpose the cure of a proportionately serious pathological condition of a pregnant woman are permitted when they cannot be safely postponed until the unborn child is viable, even if they will result in the death of the unborn child.”

      There are cases when the actual pregnancy is what is life threatening. Until the news coverage of this topic, I would have thought this nuns actions would have been in line with this teaching. The language here does not say that treatment may include abortion but it also does not specific exclude it.

  9. the “approved” abortion

    There is no such thing as an “approved” abortion. And it is here, in the distortion and twisting of language, that Evil has led many astray.

    Abortion is, by definition for moral purposes, the intentionally killing of the innocent unborn life in the womb — for whatever reason.

    On the other hand, medical interventions, which might include the premature removal (delivery) of the unborn in order to save the lives of both the mother and the unborn, with the intent to save both and the actions taken reasonably related to the saving of life, then that is NOT an abortion, “approved” or otherwise. As Kelly goes on to state — “If they’ve done their best to save both mother and child and one dies, it’s not an abortion.”

    In a life-threatening pregnancy, or in a merely health-threatening pregnancy, the choices are not merely to (1) abort or (2) let the woman die (with the unborn child). That is the false dillema that the pro-abortion crowd would have us believe. There is another option — (3) to take steps to save the life of the mother and to save (not kill) the life of the unborn. Even when the life of the mother is threatened, that does NOT mandate the killing of her unborn child. Rather, actions should be taken to save the life of the innocent child as well, even if that action might be very risky and it is foreseeable that the child might not survive.

    Options (1) and (3) are not the same, nor morally equivilent. In the one case, there is the intent to kill one human being, with actions taken toward that end and no action even attempted to save that human being, for the asserted motive of saving another human being. This is abortion; it is intentional killing, and it is ALWAYS morally wrong regardless of any secondary motivations. In the other case, there is the intent to save the life of the first human being, with actions taken toward that end, and every reasonable attempt made to save that human life, together with actions taken to save the second human being as well. This is NOT abortion, even if it results in the death of one of the two.

    One case is killing, the other case is attempted life-saving. There is a world of moral difference between the two.

    1. Bender, I understand what you are saying, but I also understand why some do not.

      Take Msgr’s example- when an embryo is stuck in the fallopian tube, resulting in an ectopic pregnancy, the fallopian tube is removed before the embryo grows larger, bursts the tube and the mother bleeds to death. Removal of that tube is necessary to save the mother, and so the Church says it is okay b/c the death of the child is not the primary intention of the medical intervention, removal of the tube holding the embryo is. So, I’m not quite seeing the whole world apart moral difference. In the ectopic scenario and the one involving the nun, it seems to me, that both medical teams seek to save the mother, knowing a child would be sacrificed. If the same medical situation presented itself whem the mother was 17 weeks, a gestation when the child is more formed and deliverable but surely will not survive, rather than 11 weeks when there is no chance for a “delivery”, how is that more moral?

      I do understand that the pro-abortion supporters would have us think that saving mothers’ lives is so common that abortion is necessary. I know that’s not true. This specific story was one that caught my attention, as I really did think that the Church supported the medical profession in making decisions in situations such as these. Obviously, I was wrong. I think I now better understand the Church’s position.

      1. I’m not exactly sure what you are asking here.
        But, there is a difference between (1) using a method that is intrinsically lethal with an intent to kill, such as dismemberment of the unborn child in the womb and then suctioning out with a vacuum, and (2) a premature delivery by caesarean section, with an intent to try to save the unborn child, with an attempt at providing life-saving care after delivery. The first is an abortion, a direct and intentionally killing. The second is a high-risk procedure that may very well have a very small chance at success, but it is an attempt to save life, not kill that life.

        In a different scenario, one can treat a patient with advanced cancer by (1) aggressive chemotherapy, which might end up causing death, or (2) shooting the patient in the head. Both treat the cancer, but one is a moral high-risk attempt to save life, and the other is an immoral act of murder.

  10. In trying to get better informed about unborn life issues years ago, I studied Dr. Derek Llewellyn-Jones’s textbook, ‘Fundamentals of Obstetrics and Gynaecology’, I think the first (or maybe second, 1978) edition. He was (sadly!) not opposed to abortion, but was seriously troubled by the fact that of all the abortions then being performed not more than around 2 percent were on grounds of ‘saving the life/grave danger to the physical health of the mother’.

    I am not suggesting for a moment that it would be ‘good enough’, but if one subtracted 98 percent of the abortions from the statistics given at the beginning of this post, the total would be fewer than that of death by the other ‘violent crimes’ listed, a terrible ‘290,000 plus’.

    (Does anyone know if true instances of ‘double effect’ are included in such ‘abortion’ statistics?)

  11. I understand all the view points and I don’t disagree with them. My mother was raised in a very traditional home and grew up a good Christian girl. However, many years ago, she had an abortion. It was my little brother who was horribly deformed inutero. He had Edward’s syndrome and might not even have survived until she reached term. Not only that, she had a neglectful husband and me, her 2-year-old daughter to care for on her own while supporting to family.

    While I’m am not entirely pro-life, I am not entirely pro-choice either. In my mother’s case, the choice came out to either have the baby and risk the repercussions of her decision or abort but try again later when she was able. I support her choice because I have a wonderful little sister.

    HOWEVER, I wholeheartedly agree that abortion is not birth control and I feel sorry for the people that use it as such. A friend of mine became pregnant by accident, but had her baby girl anyway. Why do more people not carry the baby to term and just let a family that can’t have children adopt? There is not need for all of this. There is even the option of just freezing the fertilized egg or embryo and letting a woman that will love the child carry it instead.

    There is no need for the pain and heartache of these abortions. No need.

    1. We had some friends who discovered they were going to have a baby who would not survive (heart malformations). The baby only lived a few hours after he was born. But the parents got a chance to hold their baby and love him for those precious hours. Heart-breaking. But only God should decide when we should die. I’m so sorry for your mom. I think what she went through was even harder.

      As to the new reproductive technologies, I’m against them. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it (I come from a science background so we see a lot of this — pushing the limits of science in the name of bettering the lives of humans, but they don’t think it all the way through). I still remember when the first test-tube baby was concieved and born. I thought, Oh, No. It’s best not to tamper with nature. If one cannot have a baby, adopt. There are so many unwanted children.

  12. Monsignor, could you please give us the source of the graph? I clicked on it but I only got an enlarged image.

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