Recently, there has been an ongoing debate regarding the morality of abortion, and whether the landmark Roe v. Wade decision should be overturned. This topic is of particular interest to research because, despite the overwhelming rhetoric from the media to believe otherwise, studies show that Planned Parenthood facilities are still inadvertently continuing to operate under the premise of Margaret Sanger's intended goal—to exterminate the black race through birth control and abortions. Furthermore, Margaret Sanger's diabolical influence is still manifesting today, as all of the contradictory arguments used to support abortion effectively dehumanize marginalized groups of people and innocent children. The study of embryology undeniably confirms that life, the zygote, begins as soon as the sperm fertilizes the ovum. Therefore, at that moment of conception, there is an infinite amount of life, thus allowing for the basic human right to live to be afforded and extended to said human. Because science has proven that the successful implantation of the zygote creates human life, the illegalization of abortion in all 50 states is pertinent.
Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, is seen as the champion of women's rights. Notable figures such as Hillary Clinton, Martin Luther King, and W.E.B Dubois have spoken very highly of Margaret Sanger. Hillary Clinton went so far as to declare Margaret Sanger her 'hero'. This is incredibly disturbing considering Margaret Sanger was openly a racist and a eugenicist. Sanger spent most of her career fighting for a woman's so-called government 'right' to receive an abortion, but there was undoubtedly racism behind her fight for the legalization of abortions. Margaret Sanger targeted black communities with her birth control clinics and the formulation of the Negro Project in 1939. The Negro Project was designed to provide access to birth control for African Americans. However, for a eugenicist like Sanger, it was designed to eliminate those deemed as 'unfit'. Eugenics is the human science of purposefully breeding certain favorable characteristics to improve the human race. Eugenicists believe that in order to purify and improve the human race, those who were espoused as 'fit' should be encouraged to reproduce and those who were espoused 'unfit' should be limited in reproduction.
“Birth control itself…is nothing more or less than the facilitation of the process of weeding out the unfit, of preventing the birth of defectives or of those who will become defectives” (Varley).
Sanger shrewdly compelled the public to believe she cared for African Americans, and the world's poor, but in all actuality, she advocated for birth control and abortions as a method of eliminating them. Margaret Sanger was unquestionably a racist extraordinaire, and her distaste for the black community was the groundwork for her movement to get rid of them.
“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” (Bull).
Sanger was heavily associated with the Ku Klux Klan as she spoke at a KKK rally in 1926. She also had distant ties with Adolph Hitler. Furthermore, Margaret Sanger's close friend, Ernst Rubin, served as Hitler's director of genetic sterilization. Sterilization is a major component of eugenics, and Sanger was a firm believer in the sterilization of the unfit. Sanger conceived that those deemed 'idiots', 'morons' and 'feeble-minded', should not be allowed to procreate because they didn't contribute to race betterment. Sanger contributed to the sterilization laws in 30 US states that resulted in over 60,000 sterilizations of helpless people.
“The main objects of the Population Congress would be to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring; to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization” (Sanger).
Sanger used propaganda and euphemisms such as 'planned parenthood' to deceive the public into believing her efforts were honorable. Planned Parenthood vehemently comes against claims that their facilities are still operating under Margaret Sanger's detestable ideologies, but statistics prove otherwise. For example, according to Daniels et al., 79 percent of Planned Parenthood facilities are located in minority communities. Not only are these facilities located in minority communities, but they are strategically set up within walking distance of these particular sections of cities. It is no coincidence that the majority of planned parenthoods are set up in these areas, considering the astonishing statistics concerning African Americans. Notwithstanding the minuscule portion of the population that blacks comprise, they represent a staggering percentage of abortions in America. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Abortion Surveillance report reveals that although blacks make up 14 percent of the population, they account for nearly 37 percent of all abortions in the United States (Daniels et al.). In 2016, more black babies in New York City were aborted than born. Almost half of all reported pregnancies in the city that year ended in abortion. Moreover, in states like Mississippi, Washington, Georgia and Alabama, black women are aborting their children at three or more times their presence in the population (Daniels et al.). African American pregnancies, in general, are five times more likely to end in abortion. Abortion has proven to be detrimental amongst the black race, as it has caused a 25 percent decrease in the African American population since 1973. If that isn't tragic enough, abortion is the leading cause of death in the black community, more than AIDS, violent crimes, accidents, cancer, and heart disease combined (Daniels et al.). Evidently, black lives don't matter – particularly the lives of black babies. It is inherently clear that Planned Parenthood is still intentionally functioning under Margaret Sanger's corrupt ideals, and that African Americans are disproportionately affected by abortion due to her racist ideologies entrenched into the planned parenthood legacy.
Margaret Sanger shaped the eugenics movement far beyond the '30s and '40s. The semblance of voluntary eugenics is unquestionably observed today when discussing desirable traits, such as whether or not a child will be born impoverished. One common argument used to support abortion suggests that if a child is going to be born poor, it shouldn't live. This is eugenics at its core. To suggest that a brutal death is better than living in poverty, shows the utter disdain for the worlds impoverished, thinking of them as so lowly that they are better off as dead. This is the unconscious perpetuation of disposing of those who are deemed 'unfit'. People commonly use their capricious judgments as a means for whether or not a child should be born. No one has the authority to selfishly overestimate their judgment in the name of killing a child. Abortion dehumanizes not only the poor, but the helpless, the unloved, single mothers, people on welfare, and people on food stamps, by sophomorically using these very real-life situations as a reason to die. Tragically, abortion dehumanizes incorruptible children as well. Serial killers, rapists, and pedophiles are spared the death penalty every day, but yet innocent children, who have never committed a wrong, are viciously murdered in the millions every year. Society today doesn't recognize children as a gift, but rather a parasite, a cancer, a tumor, an intrusion, and an inconvenience. “Human embryos and fetuses, however small and vulnerable, are unquestionably living human begins of the species Homo Sapiens. If we possess any human rights, it is purely and simply because we are human” (Duncan, 2013, p.83). Many use a specific biological function as the basis for human rights, such as viability or consciousness. The common consensus is that since the fetus does not have viability nor a fully functioning conscious, it is deemed as not human, which is the centrality of the pro-abortion argument. However, not possessing a fully functioning conscience or the ability to survive independently isn't a reason to die, it is more so a reason to be protected. Viability and the development of a brain capable of consciousness are intrinsically arbitrary conceptions. Consequently, linking human rights to such a capricious concept such as viability provides an entirely technological definition of who can and who can't possess basic human rights. Moreover, this definition effectively discriminates against members of the human race who are disabled or elderly. Viability and consciousness can't be the basis for determining who is a human and who is not because it fundamentally victimizes less fortunate groups of people. “If we are free to define 'human' in any way we wish, no action need be morally censured Negroes, Jews, the senile, the elderly, any group may be classified as non-human and exterminated” (Humber, p.72). The same consensus used to dehumanize children were used to dehumanize African Americans and Jews. The U.S Supreme Court declared in 1857 that black people were not legal persons and therefore the ownership of such peoples was legal. Similarly, in 1936 the German Supreme Court refused to recognize Jews as persons which made the genocide of Jews legal. African Americans and Jews were denied basic human rights because the law was able to freely define the word ‘human’. While women have the right to choose whether or not to poison, drown, or dismember their babies, these same babies have no right to choose anything, although they are incontrovertibly separate humans with a heartbeat and genetic code.
The question of when a human being is a human being is exclusively a scientific question and should be answered by embryologists, not feminists or woman's rights activists. Scientifically, there is no question whether or not the immediate product of fertilization is a unique and new human being with a genetic code that instantly determines sex, eye color, height, skin color, hair color, personality and proclivity to illness. “The zygote is a one-cell human organism that forms immediately upon sperm-egg fusion. Therefore, the life of a new human being commences at a scientifically well-defined event; the fusion of the plasma membranes of sperm and egg” (Condic, p.44). The organism formed at conception is a human being, not a 'bunch of cells' or a 'blob'. The fusion of the 23 chromosomes from the father's sperm and the 23 chromosomes from the mother's oocyte results in a single-celled human zygote, a live human with 46 chromosomes; the number of chromosomes that are associated with members of the human race. Because this new human being has a mixture of both the father and mother's chromosomes, it is not just a piece of the mother's tissue. Furthermore, this new single-celled human being immediately produces specific human proteins and enzymes (not carrot or frog enzymes and proteins), and genetically directs his/her growth and development. In fact, this genetic growth and development have been proven to not be directed by the mother. Finally, the single-celled human zygote is biologically an individual, a living organism that is an individual member of the human species. As demonstrated, life unquestionably begins at the moment of conception. Most of the radical developmental milestones that take place in a human's life occur in the mother's womb. To fatally interrupt this extremely complex cellular metamorphosis with such violence and destruction is reprehensible. Developing humans react to painful stimuli at as early as eight weeks of gestation (Condic, p.72). Although it has been proven that babies can feel the excruciating pain, it is legal in 10 states to kill babies up until 40 weeks. Suctioning the fetus out of the mother’s womb, breaking necks, ripping limbs, crushing skulls, inducing heart attacks and drowning babies in amniotic fluid are just a few of the many ways that are used to murder developing children, and tragically, they can feel it. Babies can survive independently outside of the womb at as young as 21 weeks, and as the United States advances technologically, that figure continues to decrease. If a woman aborts a baby in the womb at 21 weeks, it is legal, however, if a prematurely born baby was by the mother killed at 21 weeks outside of the womb, she would be charged with murder. The logic here is that location determines whether or not you should live. The mental gymnastics performed to justify such a malicious and evil act is remarkable. In just nine months a single cell no bigger than a speck of dust transforms into the most complex organism on earth. Americans need to take every provision possible to protect the most defenseless and innocent among us because fetuses in the womb are undoubtedly humans who possess the right to life.
Margaret Sanger would be delighted at Planned Parenthoods continuation in her legacy and the complete degradation of the most vulnerable members of society. There is no greater crime against humanity than destroying the life inside the womb, that has been proven by science, in its most defenseless state. Abortion should be illegalized in America and the landmark Roe v. Wade case should incontrovertibly be overturned. Life is the guaranteed right of every child, not the privilege of the fortunate, planned or perfect.
- Bull, Chad. “SANGER'S VIEWS SEEN AS 'RACIST'”. Stuart News, 2002, https://infoweb-newsbank-com.pvamu.idm.oclc.org/apps/news/document-view?p=WORLDNEWS&docref=news%2F0F28E5E094AD7C3D
- Condic, Maureen L. “When Does Human Life Begin: The Scientific Evidence and Terminology Revisited”. Law Journal Library, vol. 8, no. 1, 2013, pp.44–81.
- Daniels, Christina, et al. Policy Report: THE EFFECTS OF ABORTION ON THE BLACK COMMUNITY. Cure, 2015, http://docs.house.gov/meetings/JU/JU10/20171101/106562/HHRG-115-JU10-Wstate-ParkerS-20171101-SD001.pdf
- Duncan, Dwight G. “When Is a Human Being Not a Legal Person: Lethal Ramifications at the Beginning of Life”. Law Journal Library, vol. 8, no. 1, 2013, pp.82–95, http://heinonline.org.pvamu.idm.oclc.org/HOL/Page?handle=hein.journals/tjlpp8&div=8
- Grossu, Arina. “Margaret Sanger, Racist Eugenicist Extraordinaire”. The Washington Times, 5 May 2014, http://washingtontimes.com/news/2014/may/5/grossu-margaret-sanger-eugenicist/
- Humber, James M. “The Case against Abortion”. The Thomist: A Speculative Quarterly Review, The Catholic University of America Press, 15 May 2017, http://muse.jhu.edu/article/639757/pdf
- Irving, Dianne L. “When Do Human Beings Begin? Scientific Myths and Scientific Facts”. The International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 19, no. 3, Feb. 1999, pp.22–46., doi:10.1108/01443339910788730.
- Sanger, Margaret. “A Plan for Peace”. Birth Control Review, Apr. 1932, pp.107–108.
- Varley, Alana. “Margaret Sanger: Birth Control a Eugenic Solution”. Care Net, 2 Jan. 2018, http://care-net.org/abundant-life-blog/margaret-sanger-birth-control-a-eugenic-solution