For many white evangelicals who led the pro-life movement, the end of Roe v. Wade marks a long-awaited and celebrated outcome. But for Black Christians whose political views on life extend beyond a single-issue fight, the sentiment is more mixed.
As the founder of Pro-Black Pro-Life, Cherilyn Holloway sees how Black Christians may agree with valuing life from a theological standpoint and are open to a “whole-life” perspective yet they reject politically conservative policy stances. For them, the racial disparities and injustice impacting abortion need to be prioritized too.
“To live abundantly, we have to be able to acknowledge the systems that have been put in place to keep us from doing that,” said Holloway.
While the abortion bans that go into place after the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling may result in more babies born, Black Christians continue to call attention to so many other overlapping factors that threaten Black lives in pregnancy.
“It’s not quite as simple as some folks make it out to be. Having the baby isn’t the only issue, and abortion isn’t the only issue,” said Justin E. Giboney, president of The And Campaign. “There are a lot of other factors that go into that when it comes to policies like paid family leave, health care issues—which this country still has not dealt with adequately. Those also play into the conversation.”
Black women are three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than white women, and their babies are half as likely as white babies to survive until their first birthdays. Racial disparities persist across nearly every measure—from income for covering childcare to quality of education.
A promotional video for the campaign’s Whole Life Project says, “When Black women who have chosen to carry their child to full term are still at risk of death, we must lead with a more compassionate posture.”
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Source: Christianity Today