- - Sunday, November 1, 2020

On Sept. 22, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln first signed the Emancipation Proclamation, formally ending chattel slavery, which had reduced human beings to mere property. Yet, despite this presidential public policy change, we still see vestiges of that vile institution in the way Black women and their unborn children are treated today.

For many, many decades, Black women and babies have been disproportionately targeted by the abortion industry. Babies of Black mothers are three times more likely to be aborted than White babies, resulting in 20 million Black children having been legally killed in America since 1973. It is without a doubt the most significant civil rights issue of our time.

No racial group in America, historically and currently, has been more left out of societal protection or suffered more deliberate discrimination, dehumanization, agonizing dismemberment and death legally imposed upon them than Black children. Nearly 160 years after auction and purchase of slaves was prohibited, body parts of Black babies are still being sold across America by the abortion industry.

Yet, there is a powerful movement underway to end this horrible genocide against Black children. 

A month before Amy Coney Barrett was sworn in for the U.S. Supreme Court where she will bring an originalist ruling philosophy to constitutional interpretation, which always favors protection for the unborn, our nation celebrated the anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.  

On Sept. 22, 2020, 158 years to the day of Lincoln signing the Emancipation Proclamation, it was my privilege to join with other Black Leaders of the Prenatal Non-Discrimination Alliance (PRENDA) gathered in Montgomery, Alabama, to issue and sign another proclamation specifically for equality.  

The Equality Proclamation is written and declared in the spirit of the Emancipation Proclamation. It focuses on giving Black women and children targeted by the abortion industry’s discriminatory practices equal protection under the law, and is a document every American of conscience can embrace, especially in this day when the tragedy of racial division seems so thrust upon us.  

On the same day the Equality Proclamation was issued, the gathered signatory leaders also filed the “Equality Petition” for a Writ of Mandamus in the Alabama Supreme Court, compelling them to execute a duty they are legally obligated to complete. 

Alabama citizens have already spoken, yet equal protection is not occurring for all. In November 2018, the gallant citizens of Alabama stood up and said, “No more,” and voted by an overwhelming majority to pass an amendment to Alabama’s state constitution that effectively grants unborn children equal protection under the law.

My fellow signatories of the Equality Proclamation and I sincerely believe that the 10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution allows, and the Alabama Constitution requires, equal protection for Alabama’s Black children, born and unborn. 

The Equality Proclamation boldly states, “[We] the undersigned do hereby Proclaim Equality for all of God’s children, born or unborn and of every color, and, as Abraham Lincoln did, we adjure our governments and our fellow Americans to take courage to renew the battle which their fathers began, to deeply consider these little human victims being ‘trodden on … degraded and imbruted by their ‘fellows;’ to rise above the politically correct machinations of the day, to search the Constitution, human history, and their own hearts to rediscover the timeless and unspeakably important truth that we all, even the very smallest and most helpless of us all, are still created equal.”

At the end of every day we are one human race, one blood; we all bleed the same. We are not colorblind; we celebrate ethnicity, and united we stand from the womb to the tomb.

What a beautiful opportunity it could be for every individual as a child of God to come together around this issue. I call upon all of us to “look up again” to our Declaration of Independence and come together as one people to declare the Equality Proclamation in 2020.

• Alveda King is the niece of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who once pastored the now historic Dexter Avenue Baptist Church and began his quest for civil rights in Montgomery, Alabama, two blocks from the Old Union Station room where Black citizens were once required to enter and segregate and where the Equality Proclamation was signed by Black leaders on Sept. 22, 2020.

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