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    NYT Watered Down Margaret Sanger’s Racist, Eugenic Background

    NYT Watered Down Margaret Sanger’s Racist, Eugenic Background

    Why didn’t the NYT provide concrete examples of Sanger’s eugenic beliefs?
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    Planned Parenthood of New York will remove founder Margaret Sanger’s name from its Manhattan clinic due to her history in eugenics.

    The New York Times provided quotes from people stating that Sanger was a racist and viewed birth control as a way to stop minorities from reproducing.

    The publication also did not mention the fact that Planned Parenthood will continue Sanger’s mission. Ironically, the article reminds us that Sanger purposely placed her clinics in minority communities.

    The New York PP affiliate released this statement:

    “The removal of Margaret Sanger’s name from our building is both a necessary and overdue step to reckon with our legacy and acknowledge Planned Parenthood’s contributions to historical reproductive harm within communities of color,” Karen Seltzer, the chair of the New York affiliate’s board, said in a statement.

    Now let’s go on a history adventure, which is something the NYT dismissed in its article.

    The article concluded that Sanger “pushed for reproductive rights” and recalled the uncorroborated story of a young woman dying in her arms after her second abortion. But it did not include, except for a quote from the national organization, Sanger’s eugenic beliefs.

    We all know Sanger didn’t open her birth control clinic out of the goodness of her heart. She wanted women to use birth control as a way to “keep the human race pure“:

    The national organization said in the fact sheet that it disagreed with Ms. Sanger’s decision to speak to members of the Ku Klux Klan in 1926 as she tried to spread her message about birth control.

    It also condemned her support for policies to sterilize people who had disabilities that could not be treated; for banning immigrants with disabilities; and for “placing so-called illiterates, paupers, unemployables, criminals, prostitutes, and dope fiends on farms and in open spaces as long as necessary for the strengthening and development of moral conduct.”

    (Yes, Sanger spoke to the women’s arm of the KKK in 1926.)

    The national organization insisted “she had mostly been well-intentioned in trying to make birth control accessible for poor and immigrant communities.”

    The New York Times article quoted people defending Sanger because people “in both conservative and liberal circles” supported the eugenics movement, but Sanger wasn’t extreme:

    The eugenics movement had wide support at the time in both conservative and liberal circles, Ms. Chesler said, and Ms. Sanger was squarely in the latter camp. She rejected some eugenicists’ belief that white middle-class families should have more children than others, Ms. Chesler said.

    Instead, Ms. Sanger believed that the quality of all children’s lives could be improved if their parents had smaller families, Ms. Chesler said, adding that Ms. Sanger believed Black people and immigrants had a right to that better life.

    Um, has the NYT, the PP national organization, the New York affiliate, or the professor read Sanger’s letter to Dr. C.J. Gamble? It mentions the Negro Project of the South, which suggested they get black preachers and ministers to push birth control. But Sanger urged caution (emphasis mine):

    “The ministers work is also important and also he should be trained, perhaps by the Federation as to our ideals and the goal we hope to reach. We do not want word to get out that we want to exterminate the Negro population and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it occurs to any of their more rebellious members.”

    You can read more about the Negro Project here.

    M.K. Sprinkle included a few Sanger quotes in a Baltimore Sun op-ed published in January (emphasis mine):

    From “The Pivot of Civilization” (1922): “We are paying for, and even submitting to, the dictates of an ever-increasing, unceasingly spawning class of human beings who never should have been born at all.”

    From “Birth Control and Racial Betterment” (1919): “Before eugenists and others who are laboring for racial betterment can succeed, they must first clear the way for Birth Control. Like the advocates of Birth Control, the eugenists, for instance, are seeking to assist the race toward the elimination of the unfit. Both are seeking a single end but they lay emphasis upon different methods.”

    From “A Plan for Peace” (1932): [The government should] “give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization.”

    And finally, the essence of Margaret Sanger. From “The Eugenic Value of Birth Control Propaganda” (1921): “Today eugenics is suggested by the most diverse minds as the most adequate and thorough avenue in the solution of racial, political and social problems.”

    Removing Sanger’s name does not change the fact that Planned Parenthood evolved into an abortion machine and a majority of the surgical clinics are in minority communities:

    • Planned Parenthood allows a mother to kill her baby if the baby has any kind of disability.
    • Planned Parenthood allows a mother to kill her baby based on the baby’s sex.
    • 79% of Planned Parenthood surgical clinics “are located within walking distance of minority communities,” according to a study by Protecting Black Lives.
    • Planned Parenthood kills more black babies than any other race. Black women are five times more likely to have an abortion than white women.

    Margaret Sanger was evil. Her Planned Parenthood is still evil.

    [Featured image via YouTube]


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    Dr. King’s award was presented on May 5, 1966. The citation read

    “This award is presented to the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., for his courageous resistance to bigotry and his lifelong dedication to the advancement of social justice and human dignity.

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