WASHINGTON – Planned Parenthood hails its founder, Margaret Sanger, as a champion of civil rights, but one thing they don't talk about is the racism behind her fight to legalize abortion.
A group of African-American leaders want to focus attention on her ideology and how it affected black birth rates.
Sanger strived for a society that limited births to those she deemed fit to have children.
"I think the greatest sin in the world is bringing children into the world that have disease from their parents, that have no chance in the world to be a human being practically – delinquents, prisoners, all sorts of things – just marked when they're born. That to me is the greatest sin," Sanger said in a 1957 interview with Mike Wallace.
Many pro-choice advocates see her as a heroine, but critics call her a racist eugenics promoter who targeted black communities with her Planned Parenthood clinics.
"Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, once said colored (sic) people are like weeds; they need to be exterminated," Dr. Alveda King, director of Civil Rights for the Unborn, said.
"People don't understand that 79 percent of abortion clinics are located in minority communities and that minority communities shoulder a disproportionate number of abortions," said Penny Nance, president and CEO of Concerned Women of America.
King says while African-Americans make up only 13 percent of the U.S. population, more than 30 percent of aborted babies are from black mothers.
"Under the veil of secrecy and deception, 60 million plus babies have not been born because they were aborted legally since '73 – one-third of that population belong to the African-American community," King said.
Planned Parenthood recently celebrated its 100th anniversary, prompting pro-life leaders to unite under the banner "100 No More," to educate the public on the devastating impact Planned Parenthood has had on the black community.
"100 No More" hopes rallies like a recent one in Washington, D.C., will spread countrywide to enlighten people about Sanger and her tragic legacy.
"I have a serious concern about the number of abortions taking place in the minority communities, particularly the black community," Pastor Nate Thomas said. "I see this as a form of genocide. It's something we need to take a serious look at."
Planned Parenthood receives about $500 million each year from taxpayers.
"Ninety-six percent of the time if a pregnant woman walks into their clinic, she will have an abortion," Nance said.
Pro-life advocates want Congress to move that money to women's clinics that do not perform abortions.
"They outnumber, around the country, Planned Parenthood clinics 20 to 1," Nance said. "They truly help poor women. They truly help 'the least of these,' but they don't do abortions."