Friday, March 4, 2011

A Dangerous Place

“The most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.” Really? The billboard stirred up so much controversy when it was put up in New York that it was taken down. I look at this ad in jaw-dropping amazement at the audacity of Life Always, the pro-life organization behind this mastermind. This is not simply an issue of women having abortions; it’s so much deeper than that.

The intent was to draw attention to the alarming number of African-American women undergoing abortions, but it missed the mark. This is a child. A little girl. Not a fetus in utero. This billboard implicates all African-American women—child bearing or not—in an act of incompetency. We’re damned if we abort and damned if we carry to term depending on which statistics you want to give credence to.

Is it our perceived hyper-sexuality and irresponsibility that makes Big Brother feel the need to watch our wombs telling us what to do and when? History shows that our fertility has never been ours to own. So, I wonder if and when we’ll be thought of as capable of making our own decisions regarding our bodies?

Just recently I was speaking with a friend of mine about her co-worker who had suffered a miscarriage. A struggling single mother of two, neither of thinks she should have another baby until she can better provide for them. Who are we to tell a woman what she needs to do when we don’t stand in her shoes?

“The most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.” Wow! I don't know if I should bless or curse my existence.