Jesses: Under Proposal 5, do Black Lives Matter?

Photo credit Andrae Ricketts, UnSplash

By Molly and Richard Jesse, Essex

“Systemic racism” refers to all of the policies and practices entrenched in established institutions that harm certain racial groups and help others. One example is the current 18:1 disparity between federal penalties for crack cocaine and powder cocaine, imposing the same penalties for the possession of an amount of crack cocaine as for 18 times the same amount of powder cocaine.  Research shows this disparity affects crack users who are more likely to be Black, low-income and less educated [1].

Now consider Article 22 (aka Proposal 5), a proposed amendment to the Vermont Constitution that will permit abortions – taking the life of an unborn child, for any reason, through all nine months of pregnancy – up to and including the day of birth.  Article 22 will be on the 2022 General Election ballot in November for an up or down vote by Vermonters. If Article 22 passes, Vermonters will have no right to choose to protect the life of the unborn. Vermont will then be the first state in the country to explicitly deny unborn children the right to life in its constitution.

In a recent article, James Studnicki and co-authors examine the pervasive racial disparity entrenched in abortion [2]. The article begins:

“While induced abortion remains a contentious political issue, there is no credible scientific doubt that a unique human life begins at conception and, therefore, ends with an abortion. Even the Obama administration and the abortion-friendly Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have acknowledged ‘the critical importance of a child’s first 1,000 days after conception in determining a healthy and productive life trajectory…to ensure that all children…have an equal opportunity to survive and thrive.’

Yet, the evidence is clear that for many decades Black children in the United States have not had, and do not have today, an equal opportunity to survive until birth.”

Later in their article the authors report that “…Black women have been experiencing abortions at a rate nearly 4 times that of White women for more than 30 years. It is very likely that the disparity existed even before there was any reporting [of abortion data].” For Vermont in 2019, Black women experienced abortions at a rate 4.4 times that of White women.

What is the conclusion from this?  “Given [the] high incidence and racially skewed distribution [of induced abortion], abortion is unquestionably the most demographically consequential occurrence for the [Black] community.  Its [harmful] impact on the size and racial composition of the nation [including Vermont with its small Minority population] is undeniable.”  In policy and practice then, abortion is systemically racist.

Vermonters should stand against “enshrining” systemic racism in the Vermont Constitution and vote “no” in November to adding Article 22.

[1]    J. J. Palamar et al., “Powder Cocaine and Crack Use in the United States: An Examination of Risk for Arrest and Socioeconomic Disparities in Use,” Drug and Alcohol Dependence , Volume 149, 2015, 108-116.  Available at: (accessed 2/27/2022).

[2]    J. Studnicki et al., “Perceiving and Addressing the Pervasive Racial Disparity in Abortion,” Health Services Research and Managerial Epidemiology, Volume 7, 2020. Available at:!po=1.06383 (accessed 2/27/2022).

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10 replies »

  1. Great commentary, thanks for posting it.
    The glaring racial disparity of abortion rates does not get mention for obvious reasons. The disclaimer by most people who claim to be pro-choice is that, since prior to birth, the object of the “termination” is not a human life, then it does not conflict with the phrase “Black LIVES matter”. Remember, it is those on the left who love to point their long, bony fingers of indignation at those who disagree with them to accuse them of denying science. What science does not acknowledge that a new human life is created every time a human egg gets fertilized and has a complete set of DNA? Maybe the same science that does not recognize that DNA and phenotype determines gender? It sure must be confusing to be a liberal. I am a pro-choice conservative and I’m not confused about when life begins.

  2. The Liberal/Marxist/Progressive Vermont Legislators hide behind their religious mantra, “My body my choice” to justify their agenda. However, REAL science reveals that once a human egg is fertilized in the womb, it is a unique individual human being with it’s own DNA. That fertilized egg IS NOT the mother’s body, but a separate and unique human life. Therefore, destroying that individual human life is called murder.

    The sponsors of this proposed atrocious law will never tell you the truth about Margaret Sanger the evil, racist, eugenicist, founder of Planned Parenthood. Sanger first founded the American Birth Control League in 1921, which was renamed the Planned Parenthood Federation of America in 1942. Well over 90 percent of Planned Parenthood’s annual revenue comes from murdering the unborn which includes a very high percentage of blacks and minorities.

    Let’s tell each other the Truth and live in Reality.
    A “Fetus” is a Human Baby. An Abortion is the “Murder” of a Human Baby.

    • To be legally correct, an abortion is a homicide…the death of one human as a result of the act of another human. As long as abortion is done under current law, it is not murder. There are homicides that are murder, when done intentionally. There are other unintentional homicides which are crimes, when an act of negligence is involved, as in a DUI fatal, sometimes referred to as manslaughter.
      A fetus IS a human being, but the biological mother killing or ordering it to be killed by a qualified medical professional prior to the third trimester does not constitute a crime under the Roe vs Wade decision. An unborn human IS, biologically speaking, a human being in a very early stage of development. Some liberals dont think it is right to punish people for committing criminal acts when they are under the age of 26, because “their brain is still developing”. Is that also a human being in a early stage of development? Maybe it would be consistent with their thinking to allow a 22 year old to be “aborted” by it’s mother?
      That is my understanding of the law, and admittedly I got my legal training the way a lot of older Amercans did, by watching Perry Mason reruns. Abortion is a very complicated issue, having three components: legal, religious/philosophical and biological which dont necessarily align.

      • We can play around with words and semantics. The act of intentionally taking the life of another human being is murder. Consciously choosing and following through with the actions to have an abortion shows intent. GOD’S LAW calls it MURDER.

  3. Margaret Sanger was a RACIST!!!! She had Planned parenthood go into poor areas of this country to perform abortions on Black Women to reduce black populations although you will never hear them say that!!!!. In Vermont’s we had the Eugenics law in the 1920’s that was actually put into practice targeting the Northeast Kingdom where they performed both abortions and sterilizations to reduce the number of the poor, the mentally challenged, people who were of French-Canadian or Irish birth and native Americans like the Abenecki Indians. They said they wanted to clean up Vermont’s gene pool!!! Come on!!!!They repealed that Vermont law in 1931!! Let’s not have a repeat of it! Let’s vote this Proposal 5 down NOW!!!! It will be too hard to repeal it. Nip it in November!!!

  4. Planned Parenthood may be racist agains the Black population. Yeah

    Is the solution that for every 10 black abortions, We must round up 10 white pregnancies and abort them – to make things perfectly Equal”

    Other way around, If then for every 10 white abortions, we must allow
    NO MORE THAN 10 black abortions ?


    All in the name of Equal? and Equality?

    What is worse than an an abused unwanted child.

    Let’s do ADOPTIONS !! A wonderful option for a “wanted Baby!”

  5. I look at the picture of that beautiful baby above with his/her mother……..And then think of the idiots we have in the Vermont legislature pushing Proposal 5……..What values do these legislators have?

    What’s this world coming to when the people of Vermont have their elected officials proposing such sick and evil public policy?

  6. The government proposals coming forth are prime examples of a society in collapse. Our media fails us, our government fails us – what do we have left?

    • This is what happens when politicians, media, systems and governments remove GOD, USURP HIM and HIS PRINCIPLES. They think they are GODS and try to take HIS PLACE. Don’t listen to the lies, pretensions and distortions. TURN TO GOD! HE IS OUR HOPE!

  7. I can’t wait to see the absolute clown show circus that will unfold when these hysterical idiots vote this thing in.

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