A dream, passed on: Alveda King’s pro-life talk

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A dream, passed on: Alveda King’s pro-life talk

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A woman of many talents, Dr. Alveda King is more than just the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., presumably the most iconic leader of the Civil Rights Movement of the mid 1900s. On top of being a civil rights activist leader and a woman of color in 21st century America, Dr. Alveda King is also a mother, a best-selling author, and an anti-abortion activist, as well as a former member of the House of Representatives and a professor holding a Masters of Arts degree in Business Management. She also happens to be a former actress and songwriter. Alveda is founder of the Alveda King Ministries, a faith-based organization committed to bettering the world through “positive reinforcement in order to lead people to Christ in expectancy of life, family, hope and ‘agape love’ in the global community.”

On Oct. 28, Dr. Alveda spoke in the BSC’s Saint Louis Room, first giving a brief overview of her personal history, and then revealing the decisions that encouraged her to turn to a life of God with the Gospel of Life, spread the mission of her family, and be an advocate of anti-abortion. Alveda, above all, is an advocate for, as she coined it, the “pro-woman” movement. According to Alveda, the political stigmas attached to the terms “pro-life” and “pro-choice” have too many implications in the label-oriented 21st century. Instead, Alveda claimed to be an advocate for women. Her reasoning, therefore, was that if you were pro-woman, you could not advocate taking away the life of another female through any means, including abortion. Having gone through two abortions herself, Alveda believes that abortion is unjust, primarily because of the question that she repeatedly asked her audience – “who is the lawyer for the baby?” Alveda believes that women do deserve the right to their body, but a baby inside of them is not simply part of their body. A baby is a being of its own, and therefore deserves the same right to life given to all human beings.

Alveda, also being part of the acclaimed Martin Luther King, Jr.’s lineage, integrates racial struggles into her opinions on abortion. “The Negroes cannot win if they will not save their children,” said Alveda, quoting her uncle, Dr. King himself, hinting that her uncle not only wanted to see people of color succeed, but to do so by protecting one another’s infants and children – the future generations of influential decision-makers and activists.

Alveda answered audience questions at the end of her presentation, during which she addressed a question regarding the Black Lives Matter movement and the series of Ferguson events that occurred in the St. Louis area over the past few months. Alveda expressed that she cared about all lives and all races. She stressed the idea that not only black lives, or Hispanic, or Asian, should be preserved and valued, but so should all, because, as she said, “the color of our skin is just on the top, and we are all people below this surface of difference.” Alveda did recognize, however, that Black Lives Matter was a movement spurred from a desperate cry of despair, one that most people could agree was much needed, especially following Ferguson and other events that occurred throughout the nation around its time.

One memorable anecdote Alveda shared was about her mother, Naomi King. Naomi was once approached, while in her car, by a young black man. He threatened her, asking her to get out of her car and to give him her keys. Upon refusing, the man punched her in the face twice. Naomi, wanting to keep her daughter informed with the happenings of her life, called Alveda later, telling her what had happened. Rather than being concerned with her own condition, Naomi was more concerned with the events that occurred in the boy’s life that made him feel it okay to repeatedly punch an old lady in the face. Alveda later pointed out that it was not a white police officer who had punched her mother, but a black man. She emphasized the idea that all lives should be nurtured and valued to the greatest extent, because ultimately, our race should only be a unifying factor, rather than a pyramidal structure of systemic race-oriented harm.