Radiance Foundation leader defends group on NPR
The head of the Radiance Foundation, a controversial anti-abortion group, made an appearance on NPR’s Tell Me More yesterday. After defending his group’s efforts to equate abortion rates in the African-American community with racism, Ryan Bomberger took to his blog and Twitter account to decry the interview for being biased and heavily edited.
Bomberger’s Radiance Foundation is responsible for a string of billboards claiming that abortion is an epidemic in the black community — one fueled by Planned Parenthood. Some of the ads even liken abortion to slavery, proclaiming, “The 13th Amendment freed us. Abortion enslaves us,” with a link to the foundation’s toomanyaborted.com.
On Tell Me More, Bomberger and fellow guest Rev. Carlton Veazey (of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice) spoke heatedly about abortion within the African-American community, which data shows is more prevalent than within other groups.
Defending his latest campaign, which is aimed at calling out African-American leaders for failing to support the pro-life movement, Bomberger said that the problem for groups like his is that “it doesn’t matter what the pro-life messaging is, it is always going to be denounced by pro-abortion groups who use the euphemisms of reproductive choice. We’re talking about abortion. We need to talk about the reality of what it actually is. It’s like calling slavery ‘economic justice.’”
Asked whether he felt that groups like Planned Parenthood specifically target African-Americans, the discussion between Bomberger and host Michel Martin grew slightly heated.
From the interview:
Bomberger: The irrefutable, historically documented proof that the Negro Project launched by Planned Parenthood’s founder Margaret Sanger, that’s an historical event.
Martin: No, I’m sorry, I don’t know that there’s. … It is true that there were projects aimed at encouraging contraceptive use among African-Americans, but I don’t know that there’s any data to show that abortion was part of that conversation. In fact, there’s also documented evidence that Margaret Sanger reported abortion herself.
Bomberger: I’m not saying about abortion — birth control, to severely reduce or eliminate the reproduction of poorer blacks. The Margaret Sanger papers out of NYU prove this point.
Martin: But you think contraception is the same as abortion?
Bomberger: Abortion has become today’s contraception. There was never any Caucasian project, or Latino project or Asian project — there was only the Negro Project, to reduce the birth rate of poorer blacks.
Following his on-air interview, Bomberger took to the Radiance Foundation’s blog, writing that “only parts of what [he] said were kept intact, while Rev. Veazey’s words were unedited, kept in full.” Bomberger also alleged “typical, liberal media bias” on the part of NPR and said that Rev. Beazey was a liar. “If one can justify killing, lying isn’t much of a stretch,” he wrote.
Beazey’s group (and several other pro-choice activists) has claimed that the Radiance Foundation’s Oakland billboards were taken down because of their controversial nature. As previously reported by The Florida Independent, representatives for CBS Outdoor (the company managing the billboards) said they were removed simply because the contract ran its course.
Listen to the full interview here.