In an echo of the billboards that were placed in Manhattan earlier this year targeting African-American women, a Latino pro-life group will launch an anti-abortion campaign on Friday targeting Latinas. The conservative group Latino Partnership For Conservative Principles is launching its anti-abortion crusade in California to coincide with a related conference — but the announcement of their mass messaging intent has already stolen its shine.
Using language to deter Latinas from seeking abortions similar to the earlier billboards, these new ads will declare: “The most dangerous place for a Latino is in the womb.” Alfonso Aguilar, executive director of the group behind this statement, argues that such propaganda is necessary to counteract the fact that, in his opinion, groups like Planned Parenthood coerce Latinas into having abortions at a rate of 200,000 per year. Aguilar also told Fox News Latino:
“Organizations like Planned Parenthood live off abortions,” he said. “They know they can target Latina women, who many times are younger, low income.”
“Latina women are victims of abortion, just the like the children being killed,” he said. “We see Latinas as victims, not perpetrators of crime.”
Planned Parenthood counters these claims with similar arguments made against the creators of the billboards aimed at black women that ran in Manhattan in February. The respected organization made it clear that it does not target women of any particular race; it only provides a wide array of services that are protective of overall female health.
In fact, the Vice President of Public Affairs for Planned Parenthood, Celinda Vazquez, said: “I’m a Latina and personally it’s disturbing. Planned Parenthood just absolutely believes that every woman regardless of her ethnicity has the right to make informed decisions about her health, of course in consultation with her family and her faith.”
Well said, sister. We live in a country that protects both free speech and a woman’s right to choose if and when to have children. Groups like Latino Partnership For Conservative Principles and Life Always — which created the campaign seeking to influence black women — are unfortunately using their power to communicate freely to control the reproductive rights of others.
Latino conservatives can claim to see Latinas who have abortions as “victims,” but this latest manipulation illustrates a deep determination to take away a woman’s right to choose, simply clothed in sympathy. If society respects their right to free speech, conservatives must respect the rights of women to exercise their own power. Anything less will be met with full resistance. We are not fooled by offers of protection that are really declarations of war.