This week, Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., traveled to Rome for a forum of Catholic organizations that promote human dignity. Although Dr. King is not Catholic, the Catholic News Agency explains that she attended the conference in support of her project “Civil Rights for the Unborn,” a continuation of her uncle’s civil rights activism which she directs with the Catholic organization Priests for Life. As part of the conference, Dr. King had the opportunity to meet Pope Francis, who has quoted her uncle on many occasions. Following the meeting, Dr. King met with a group of journalists, including the Catholic News Agency (CNA), to speak about her commitment to the preborn and share more of her personal story.
Dr. King was born in 1951, and she revealed in this week’s interview that if not for the intervention of her Pro-Life grandfather, Dr. Martin Luther King Sr., her life might have ended in an abortion. Her parents discovered they were pregnant before they were married and considered abortion. CNA writes:
At the time, The Negro Project launched by Margaret Sanger in 1939 was continuing to gain steam. Among other things, the project worked to promote contraception and abortion in the black community.
King said her parents had considered getting an abortion until her grandfather, Martin Luther King Sr., “prophetically” intervened. Though they didn’t have ultrasound machines at the time, King said her grandfather had strongly rejected the claim that the fetus was “just a lump of flesh.” He said that the baby was a granddaughter whom he had seen in a dream three years prior.
After hearing Martin Luther King Sr. describe how his granddaughter would look, Alveda King’s parents decided against the abortion and she was born in 1951.
Although she heard this story many times growing up, Dr. King turned away from her Pro-Life roots and became an abortion activist. After the birth of her first child, she was coerced into two abortions, tragic and painful experiences that altered the course of her life. When she became pregnant with her fourth child, Dr. Martin Luther King Sr. once again intervened saying, “That’s not a lump of flesh, that’s my great-grandchild.” Seeing an ultrasound with her baby’s heartbeat confirmed her grandfather’s words, and King became a Pro-Life advocate.
Dr. King has especially focused on reaching the black community with the Pro-Life message, because abortion disproportionately affects black communities. She explains how the Pro-Life movement is a continuation of the civil rights movement. Protecting the lives of the preborn is an issue that affects all people.
Dr. King also took the opportunity to shed light on a controversial moment in her uncle’s life. Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion business, has made much of the fact that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. received an award from the group in 1966. Dr. Alveda King explained that her uncle never accepted Planned Parenthood’s radical abortion agenda. She also pointed out the fact that he refused to attend the award ceremony, and his wife and secretary accepted the award on his behalf and wrote the thank you note.
Dr. Alveda King’s work to defend the rights of the preborn is a continuation of her family’s legacy to advance civil rights. Sharing her personal story and how abortion has touched her own life shows how pervasive the anti-Life forces are, especially in the black community. Although there is much heartache in her story, there is also great hope. Dr. King’s own life was spared from abortion, and she has found healing after her own abortion decisions. Additionally, Dr. King expressed hope in young people who are committed to the Pro-Life movement.