Georgia Right to Life Using Racialized Gender Narratives to Garner Support

Last week femme on the community site brought to our attention this horrific anti-choice billboard and campaign brought to us by Georgia Right to Life. She interrogates aptly,

This billboard dehumanizes both black women and children, by asserting that black children are an “endangered species,” which animalizes them, and by asserting that black women have no control over our own bodies and that we’re somehow intellectually weak enough to be controlled by the so-called eugenics-crazed poor-black-baby-eaters, aka Planned Parenthood.

Georgia Right to Life has gone too far in suggesting that black women are too quick to get abortions and should therefore “choose life.” By speaking to a feigned nationalistic sentiment suggesting that one crisis for the black community is that there are not enough black children and choosing the frame of “too many abortions,” this advertising campaign in the last few weeks has gained support from activists around the country.

The eyebrow-raising ads depicting a black child are an effort by the antiabortion movement to use race to rally support within the black community. The reaction from black leaders has been mixed, but the “Too Many Aborted” campaign, which so far is unique to Georgia, is drawing support from other antiabortion groups across the country.
“This campaign is in your face, and nobody can ignore it,” said the Rev. Johnny Hunter, national director of the Life Education and Resource Network, a North Carolina-based antiabortion group.
The effort is sponsored by Georgia Right to Life, which also is pushing legislation that aims to ban abortions based on race.

Georgia Right to Life is targeting black women because a majority of the abortions sought in Georgia were by black women. And frankly, what is more threatening than a generation of black women determining what is right for their own bodies?
And in a usual move to usurp feminist talking points, the Radiance Foundation one of the billboard sponsors claims that the impetus for the campaign is to uncover the “segregationist” agenda from liberals to essentially wipe out the black community. Right, that is exactly what the pro-choice community has been putting all their energy into, getting reproductive health and information into the hands of women that can’t get access to it is a clear shroud for segregation *eye roll*.
As femme writes in response to one of the advocates of the billboards,

The way Ms. Davis, and other anti-abortion advocates, frame this argument is both misogynistic and racist. She claims to care, but her goal is not to improve the lives of black women and children. Making abortion illegal will not improve our lives, and neither will any of the proposals anti-abortion groups support, like abstinence-only education and stricter laws regarding contraception.

Furthermore, according to the Center for Disease Control (via Essence) abortion has no impact on the population of black children, so if anything it will hurt the black community and the lives of black women to make it more difficult to access abortion. So not only is it a racist and sexist policy, but it also ignores the facts at hand. Disgusting.
Please don’t miss Shark-Fu’s insightful take on the anti-choice focus on eugenics and women of color.

And today from the Guttmacher Institute,

Among women of all ages, black Americans are almost four times as likely as whites to have an abortion. Antiabortion activists use this statistic to make the groundless argument that the “abortion industry” is targeting and marketing aggressively to African-American communities. What proponents of this argument fail to recognize is that black women’s higher abortion rates are directly related to their higher rates of unintended pregnancy. Disproportionately high rates of both unintended pregnancy and abortion are symptoms of the broader health disparities faced by the black community. Fundamentally, the question we should be asking is what can be done to help black women have fewer unintended pregnancies and achieve better health outcomes in general.

Oh, right anti-choicers once again not based in quantifiable data, just their bizarre interpretation of it.

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