On September 26, Bishop Charles E. Blake, Presiding Bishop of the Church of God in Christ, a primarily African-American denomination, issued a statement in support of what he called President Barack Obama’s “effort to provide healthcare to every American.”
It should never be forgotten that, far from making an “effort to provide healthcare to every American” President Obama is one of the very few American politicians who has ever voted to deny healthcare to Americans. President Obama did this as an Illinois state senator when he voted on four separate occasions against the Illinois Born Alive Infants Protection Act. (The act passed 52-0 after Obama left Illinois to serve as a US Senator.)
Bishop Blake‘s statement of support included the sentence "In accord with our commitment to Christian teaching, we wholeheartedly affirm the president's position that medical costs related to the abortion of fetuses shall not be covered by healthcare plans funded by this initiative."
Bishop Blake has thus joined other religious leaders, including those at the Catholic Health Association, who are apparently willing to accept at face-value President Obama’s claim that no government healthcare bill will allow public monies to be used to fund abortion. Given President Obama’s legislative history and political allies, such uncritical acceptance goes beyond charity and becomes irresponsibility.
Bishop Blake’s statement has provoked outrage from other African-American clergymen around the country. The following statement was issued in response:
“The Black Pro-life Movement is outraged by the recent endorsement of this administration's health care proposal by some clergy of the Church of God in Christ.
As God-fearing individuals we encourage COGIC leaders to read and evaluate the President’s plan, including the Capps-Waxman Amendment, rather than merely parroting his words. If unborn children cannot depend on the Church to carefully examine this bill to see if their lives will be protected from state-funded genocide, on whom can they depend?
Such an endorsement does not consider the devastating impact abortion is having in the black community. Over 1,400 black babies each day are lynched out of their mothers’ wombs. Clearly, this rate of prenatal murder in our community outpaces death by heart disease, diabetes, cancer, HIV/AIDS and violent crime combined.
We find it troubling that this endorsement does not acknowledge the deliberate targeting of the black community by Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry, nor decry the mental and physiological impact abortion is having on black women across America.
We recommend in the strongest terms possible that this endorsement be withdrawn until such time that the Obama administration adds language to the health care proposal that specifically prohibits taxpayer funded abortions.
Pastor Stephen E. Broden
Fair Park Bible Fellowship
Pastor Dion Evans
Chosen Vessels Christian Church
Reverend Walter B. Hoye
Union City, CA
Reverend Dean Nelson
Network of Politically Active Christians
801 K St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
Dr. Johnny Hunter D.D.
L.E.A.R.N Inc. (Life Education and Resource Network)
Fayetteville, North Carolina
Dr. Levon R. Yuille, .D.D
Chair: National Black Pro Life Congress
Host : Joshua's Trail Talk Show (WDTK)
Member of The Michigan Advisory Committee
U.S. Commission on Civil Rights"
We applaud the statement of the Black Pro-Life Ministers. We join them in urging His Excellency Bishop Blake to withdraw any endorsement of any healthcare plan until "the Obama administration adds language to the health care proposal that specifically prohibits taxpayer funded abortions. "