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King delivers pro-life speech


By Kourtney Liepelt

Crowds flocked to the front seats of the Whittenberger Auditorium in the Indiana Memorial Union; stragglers scattered in the back rows.

Fragments of conversation about differences in religion fluttered throughout the room until Ania Tondel, IU Students for Life president, stepped on stage to introduce the speaker.

Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., approached the lectern to tremendous applause to speak about her experiences with and views on abortion Tuesday.

“I’ll say it before you tonight: A woman has the right to choose what she does with her body,” she began. “The baby is not her body.”

King, who works with the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, then delved into the topic she claims is the civil rights issue of the 21st century, describing her mother’s pregnancy situation first.

When King’s mother became pregnant, she contemplated an abortion, King said.
The words of her future father-in-law, however, stopped her from going through with it.
“That’s not a lump of flesh,” King’s grandfather, Dr. Martin Luther King Sr., said to her mother. “That’s a girl.”

So, Alveda King was born.

Her decisions differed from her mother’s during her first pregnancies. While her first resulted in a miscarriage, King said she opted for abortion with the next two.

At this point in her life, she considered herself pro-choice.

After leaving her husband and becoming pregnant again, her point of view changed. She had a discussion similar to the one between her mother and grandfather.

“I wouldn’t abort a baby again, but I can’t tell anybody else not to do it,” King said.

She proclaimed a need for abstinence, which was followed by applause.

King then opened the floor for a question-and-answer session, where she responded citing her own experience as proof.

“Numbers don’t lie. Statistics don’t lie. Facts don’t lie,” she said. “It’s hard for people to accept it. For me, I went through it.”

Jessica Edwards, a freshman majoring in elementary education, said she attended the speech as a requirement for a public speaking class. She also said she found the topic fascinating.

“I always like to hear opinions because they bring things forth in a different light,” she said.

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