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Margaret Sanger

VIRGINIA, February 5, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – As bad weeks go, it doesn’t get much worse for a politician than to have it revealed that you wore blackface or Ku Klux Klan robes to a party within days of being recorded endorsing infanticide. But while most are treating Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s latest scandals as unrelated, they actually fit together perfectly.

It’s unknown whether Northam’s now-infamous yearbook photo reflects a grossly insensitive attempt at shock humor or genuine racial animus he may have once held; his bizarre press conference retracting his initial confession while admitting to another instance of wearing blackface left the distinct impression the man’s not quite right in the head. But it certainly wouldn’t be the first example of racism and pro-abortion ideology overlapping; in fact, racism is baked into the origins of the modern abortion industry.

As most pro-lifers know but too much of the general public does not, Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger was a vocal proponent birth control and euthanasia as tools of eugenics, on the basis of factors including race.

A member of the American Eugenics Society, Sanger wrote that “clear[ing] the way for Birth Control” was necessary for the success of “eugenists and others who are laboring for racial betterment” and declared the “campaign for birth control is […] practically identical in ideal with the final aim of eugenics.”

“[T]he mass of ignorant Negroes still breed carelessly and disastrously, so that the increase among Negroes, even more than the increase among whites, is from that part of the population least intelligent and fit, and least able to rear their children properly,” read one article from Sanger’s The Birth Control Review.

To quell black suspicion of her racial agenda, in 1939, Sanger launched the “Negro Project” to enlist black ministers to help her promote birth control. “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population,” she wrote in a letter to Clarence Gamble, explaining that if it did, black ministers would be able to “straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.”

Sanger even admitted in her autobiography that in 1926 she spoke to the “women’s branch of the Ku Klux Klan,” through which she said she “accomplished my purpose” by inspiring a “dozen invitations to speak to similar groups.”

But Sanger is hardly the only eugenicist in Planned Parenthood’s history. Henry Fairchild, Samuel Anderson, CP Blacker, Dorothy Brush, C. Lalor Burdick, Hilda Cornish, Robert Dickinson, Haven Emerson, and Frank Lorimer are just some of the former Planned Parenthood officials and backers who also had ties to the eugenics movement. Once upon a time, the International Committee on Planned Parenthood even received rent-free office space from the American Eugenics Society.

These days Planned Parenthood typically keeps a tight lid on whatever racist sentiments it may still harbor, but every once in a while something slips out. Several years ago, Live Action released recordings of calls to Planned Parenthood locations in Idaho, New Mexico, Ohio, and Oklahoma in which officials enthusiastically agreed to take donations earmarked to abort babies of specific races.

Ultimately, regardless of intent, abortion’s toll on the black community remains devastating.

Planned Parenthood committed at least 332,757 abortions last year. The pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute’s most recent statistics say 28 percent of abortions happen to black babies. That means Planned Parenthood kills more than 93,000 black babies every year – or more than 27 times the number of blacks killed by lynching across the span of 87 years.

Addressing the Virginia controversy on Monday, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s niece Dr. Alveda King said Northam could be forgiven for the 35-year-old picture, but the real test would be for him to “stop working with Planned Parenthood” and stop doing Ku Klux Klanish things and reverse and rescind all of those ugly laws that he is still supporting today.

“You are a pediatrician. You know those are human beings right there in the womb,” she said.

Odds are Northam’s career won’t survive the yearbook photo; his own party and the same Planned Parenthood that spent $3 million to elect him in the first place are demanding he resign (not out of the principle, but because he’s now a liability and his presumptive replacement, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, is just as supportive of abortion-on-demand). But pro-lifers can’t let them just dump Northam as an aberration and move on; now’s the time to educate the public that his costume reflects an evil with deep ties to abortion-on-demand’s inhuman ideology.

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Calvin Freiburger is a Wisconsin-based conservative writer and 2011 graduate of Hillsdale College. His commentary and analysis have been featured on NewsReal Blog, Live Action, and various other conservative websites. Before joining LifeSiteNews, he spent two years in Washington, DC, working to build support for the Life at Conception Act with the National Pro-Life Alliance, then worked a year and a half as assistant editor of You can follow him on Twitter @CalFreiburger, and check out his personal website,