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This Documentary Uncovers Anti-Abortion Movement’s Disregard for Actual Black Lives

Still from The Racial Politics of Abortion

“Often our stories, the stories of Black women, are too often lost or overlooked.”

Dawn Porter’s two-part documentary The Racial Politics of Abortion exposes the racial implications of the anti-choice movement. It uncovers how the process of getting an abortion is often more difficult for Black women politically, economically and socially.

Porter’s short film also dispels the myth that the pro-choice movement is a fight only for white feminists. According to the CDC, although most women who receive abortions are white, Black women are reportedly five times more likely to get an abortion. However, this alarming statistic is not just the result of a lack of sexual education, but an issue of class and economic opportunity.

Related: 4 Tips for Being an Excellent Ally When Your Friend is Terminating a Pregnancy

Additionally, The Racial Politics of Abortion investigates the racism found in many factions of the anti-choice movement. Porter documented the hostility she received because of her role in the film’s creation.

In one scene, an angry, white male protester yells, “We like black babies because Black Babies Matter but apparently not to you … You’re a disgrace to your race.” However, Porter’s documentary correlates high abortion rates to poverty and household income. Many women make the choice to end their pregnancies because, in reality, harsh economic conditions make it impossible for them to feed any new children.  

Anti-abortion advocates say that Black fetuses matter, but don’t seem to have any empathy for actual Black lives.

Check out the full documentary at TIME magazine’s website. 


Heather was born in Chicago and raised in Pasadena, California and proudly claims Oakland as her adopted home. She has a B.A. in African-American Studies from Smith College (proud Smithie), and a Masters in Education Leadership from New York University. Heather's spent the past decade working in the field of educational equity and advocacy. She currently teaches Child and Adolescent Development at San Francisco State University and manages a blog called What's Happening Black Oakland? She also contributes to Blavity, a blog for black millennials. Heather's committed to writing interesting and relevant stories that aren't being covered by the mainstream media, while straying away from the single story that is usually imposed on people of color. In her free time she enjoys traveling and going to live shows.

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