Erbe: Alevda King's Pro-Life Stance 'Twists' MLK Record

Worry not, America: tens of millions of dead babies isn't a civil rights issue. At least not according to U.S. News & World Report columnist Bonnie Erbe.

In an Aug. 31 post, Erbe slammed Dr. Alveda King, the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and a pro-life activist, for comparing abortion to racism. Erbe suggested King “co-opted her uncle's legacy to 'flog' issues not central to the civil rights era.”

Erbe's complaint was pinned to King's appearance at the Aug. 28 “Restoring Honor” rally in Washington, D.C. Although King said little about abortion during her speech at the rally – mentioning the “womb war that threatens the fabric of our society” – Erbe took her to task for trying “to twist Dr. King's record to one's own politics.”

Failing to cite anything King said at the rally itself, Erbe quoted a 2008 report in which King compared abortion to racism. “The error is thinking that when someone stands in the way of our wants, we can justify getting that person out of our lives,” she quoted King as saying. “Abortion and racism stem from the same poisonous root, selfishness.”

Erbe didn't address King's characterization of abortion as selfish, but said, “Racism is unacceptable and violates a basic human right. Abortion is quite something else again.”

While King has said she considers the right-to-life a civil rights issue, Erbe, an abortion rights advocate, would not call access to abortion the same. “We are at the point where the terms are so overused, they have become meaningless. But to equate abortion with racism is so way out of whack with reality, it says more about the person using the terms interchangeably, than it does about either of those issues,” she wrote.

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