February is Black History Month, which “pays tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society.” Tragically, a significant part of black history in the United States stems from the racist roots of abortion, though this history is often swept under the rug.

Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, was a virulent racist and eugenicist. Even Planned Parenthood has acknowledged as much.

In 2020, Planned Parenthood’s president Alexis McGill Johnson authored an op-ed for The New York Times, in which she acknowledged “Sanger’s racist and eugenics tendencies, by calling out her meeting with the Ku Klux Klan and her support for the Supreme Court Buck v. Bell case that legalized the forced sterilization of those considered ‘imbeciles.’”

“We don’t know what was in Sanger’s heart, and we don’t need to in order to condemn her harmful choices,” McGill Johnson wrote.

The Daily Citizen spoke with Rev. Dean Nelson, chairman of the Frederick Douglass Foundation and Vice President of Government Relations with Human Coalition. Rev. Nelson is also an African American.

Rev. Nelson cited a letter that Sanger wrote to her friend Clarence Gamble (of Proctor and Gamble) from 1939 in which Sanger wrote, “We do not want word to go 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.”

“A lot of evidence highlights Planned Parenthood’s past that affirms their racism,” Rev. Nelson said. “There is a long deep-seated racist past within the eugenics movement that has spilled into the abortion movement.”

The reverend has recently authored an eBook titled, The Complete Guide to Defund Planned Parenthood. In the short book, he recounts Sanger’s “Negro Project,” begun in 1939, which had as its goal the reduction of the black population.

“She said this would be done through birth control, but she vocally supported forced sterilization and the segregation of the ‘unfit,’” Rev. Nelson writes. “Sanger wanted Planned Parenthood to train Black doctors and ministers to spread the unholy gospel of population control.”

So, is the Planned Parenthood of today free from the racist roots of its founder?

According to Rev. Nelson, the answer is unequivocal: no.

“Planned Parenthood can’t escape from their racist roots,” Rev. Nelson told us. “The vast majority of surgical abortion clinics today are found in minority communities.”

Indeed, according to a 2015 report, almost 80% of Planned Parenthood’s surgical abortion facilities are located within walking distance of minority neighborhoods. And in New York City, a majority-minority city, a black baby is more likely to be aborted than born.

“If we live in a society that wants to address racism, I don’t think Planned Parenthood should be off the hook,” Rev. Nelson said. “Think of the tremendous amount of money that Planned Parenthood gets annually from the government, even as it continues to target black and latino neighborhoods. How much money is Planned Parenthood getting from the federal government to do that?”

The answer as of 2019: $618.1 million, in part for performing 354,871 abortions.

Now, the reverend noted that thankfully, there are multiple black pro-life heroes, past and present, who have stood up against the scourge of abortion.

For example, Alveda King, who is the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., is a very committed pro-life activist. She spoke at Focus on the Family’s pro-life rally, Alive from New York, held in the heart of New York City.

Other civil rights leaders like Fannie Lou Hamer and Mildred Jefferson were also actively pro-life.

“There are many pro-life black Americans,” Rev. Nelson said. And praise God for that.

The Daily Citizen also spoke with Robyn Chambers, Executive Director of Advocacy for Children at Focus on the Family.

“As I was thinking about Black History month and recalling the African men and women that have spoken into my life, I can’t help thinking how different my life would be without them,” Chambers said. “What if they had fallen victim to Margaret Sanger’s and Planned Parenthood’s evil plans?”

She added, “I hope each of us will pause and think about that. Then pray, pray for eyes to be opened and hearts to be changed as we join together to stand for life.”

Focus on the Family has been working to turn the cultural tide and save mothers and babies from abortion for years. Since beginning the Option Ultrasound Program in 2004, Focus has helped save nearly half a million lives.

Our goal is to save one million babies by 2025. Just $60 will save a life through Option Ultrasound. Will you partner with us to save a life from abortion here?

Additionally, if you are experiencing an unexpected pregnancy and want to learn more about your options, you can visit My Choice Network here.

Related resources:

My Choice Network

Focus on the Family Pro-Life

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