By Arturo R. García
The latest campaign, headed by The Radiance Foundation has “no political reason at all,” according to chief creative officer Ryan Bomberger. However, the new billboards – which say “The 13th Amendment freed us. Abortion enslaves us” – was timed to coincide with Juneteenth, which celebrates the emancipation of U.S. slaves Bomberger told The Huffington Post:
“When you look at what abortion has brought to the black community, it can’t be typified to anything other than present-day slavery. Roe v. Wade used the 14th Amendment–which finally gave humanity to African Americans—and contorted it to give someone the right to kill an unborn child. It’s just like slavery, because you have a class of people who are considered less than human, and therefore they can be treated like property.”
Another 60 billboards went up around Oakland saying “Black & Beautiful,” in a campaign run by the Issues For Life Foundation, an offshoot of the Radiance group. According to KGO-TV, Issues For Life held a press conference in Oakland Saturday accusing Planned Parenthood of racism:
“I had an appointment with death,” one woman said. “My mother’s name was in a book. There was an appointment time for me to have died, and if God hadn’t broken that appointment, I wouldn’t be here today.”
While Issues For Life told KTVU-TV the billboards, currently scheduled to be on display thru July 10, were intended to “create a dialogue,” district Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) has already voiced her opposition to them.
“They stigmatize African-American women, they’re not a positive message,” Lee told the station. “All women should have a right to make their own decisions without anyone interfering with those personal decisions.”
The director of the NAACP’s Washington bureau told the Post it had taken note of the Radiant campaign.
“Comparing abortion to slavery certainly raises major concerns,” said Hilary Shelton. “Women are not forced to have abortions the way they were in servitude. Slavery was about not having the right to make any decisions. Women were actually bred to produce children for the purposes of profit. This is so far removed from that, that if it weren’t such a serious issue, it would almost be laughable.”