All kinds of utterly absurd accusations have been leveled at Planned Parenthood by Americans who believe they could be President, but Ben Carson’s charge that the non-profit is actively involved in a eugenics conspiracy against African-Americans is definitely beyond the realm of reason. The Washington Post’s fact checker Glenn Kessler today awarded Four Pinocchios on Ben Carson’s statement last week to Fox News:
“Well, maybe I’m not objective when it comes to Planned Parenthood. But you know, I know who Margaret Sanger is, and I know that she believed in eugenics, and that she was not particularly enamored with black people. And one of the reasons that you find most of their clinics in black neighborhoods is so that you can find way to control that population. And I think people should go back and read about Margaret Sanger, who founded this place….”
It should be mentioned that Carson is not the only presidential candidate to take shots at Planned Parenthood by assaulting, among other things, its founder, Margaret Sanger. In a 2011 interview with CBS’s Bob Schieffer, failed candidate Herman Cain also claimed that Planned Parenthood is really an organization designed around “planned genocide.” At that time, Kessler also discredited Cain’s comments, giving him Four Pinnochios. Pastor and extremist candidate Mike Huckabee has recently been comparing Planned Parenthood to the Nazi Party and has spoken to group endorsing the eugenics conspiracy.
The implication of both Carson’s latest attack and Cain’s earlier statement – Planned Parenthood is an organization whose true mission is to control the population of people of color and minorities. Using the often poorly expressed statements of its founder, Margaret Sanger, as evidence of Planned Parenthood’s real mission.
While Kessler largely claims that others who have had more direct knowledge of Sanger suggest her comments are being taken out of context, even Kessler acknowledges that by virtue of some of her comments, she is nonetheless, a controversial figure.
What Kessler does show is that there is no evidence that Planned Parenthood’s agenda is to place most of its clinics in black neighborhoods to make abortion readily available in these neighborhoods to control population. It is just false, most of their facilities are in white neighborhoods.
Furthermore, depending upon which organization is reporting the number of abortions, Planned Parenthood is responsible for 12 percent to 25 percent of all abortions performed in the U.S. The Washington Times, no bastion of liberalism, reports that Planned Parenthood abortion services are roughly 3 percent of all the services it performs.
And now, here is the last line of Carson’s quote cited above “(Margaret Sanger)… a woman who Hillary Clinton by the way says she admires. Look and see what many people in Nazi Germany thought about her.”
As Kessler said, Sanger may not have been artful with some of her comments, but there is absolutely no evidence she was a Nazi sympathizer. In fact, Carson has a history of actualizing Goodwin’s Law. Admiring a woman who was a pioneer for woman’s health is not a disqualifying weakness, and nor is supporting an organization that provides invaluable services for women who could not otherwise afford them, regardless of the pedigree of its founder.
Sanger may have been an imperfect person, but there is no evidence to suggest that the present organization embodies any of its founder’s controversial beliefs or remarks.
However, what is most sinister is that these comments coming from two of the most prominent black Republicans are poorly veiled attempts, on their part, to suggest that supporters of Planned Parenthood are supporting an organization founded by a racist.
Carson’s message is not really about Planned Parenthood, but his message is most certainly about Hillary and by extension all Democrats – whose true motive he implies is to control minorities by controlling their population. His is a racially motivated message to the African Americans and minority communities – If they really had their own best interests in mind, they would not vote for Democrats.
Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.