Margaret Sanger, the KKK, and a socialist worldview

By Al Benson Jr.

In the past few days I have read and heard commentary about Margaret Sanger and her ties to Planned Parenthood, the KKK, and some elusive thing called “the Southern Strategy” which, as I gather from the commentary is supposed to be some sort of a Southern agenda to eliminate black people. I probably wouldn’t have paid attention to it all that much except for the  comments about a “Southern Strategy” which is supposed to indicate some sort of Southern program for racial genocide against blacks.

As far a Margaret Sanger goes, it seems as if she was somewhat your typical run-of-the-mill leftist. Born in Corning, New York, she would hardly qualify as a Southern Belle and her politics definitely were not Southern. Wikipedia noted of her: “Already imbued with William Sanger’s (her husband) leftist politics, Margaret Sanger also threw herself into the radical politics and modernist values of pre-World War 1 Greenwich Village bohemia, where she joined the Women’s Committee of the New York Socialist party. She took part in the labor actions of the Industrial Workers of the World…” And she was involved with such noted left-wingers as John Reed, Upton Sinclair, and “Red Emma” Goldman.

As most folks know, she was one of the leading lights in the Planned Parenthood movement. In 1914 Sanger started publishing a monthly newsletter called The Woman Rebel. That promoted birth control and in which she used the slogan “No Gods, No Masters.” In that, she amply demonstrated, according to Proverbs 8:36, where she placed herself: “But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.”

I also recently read an article by Paul Kengor from The American Spectator which was entitled: Reflections on Roe: When Margaret Sanger Spoke to the KKK. Dr. Kengor is a professor of political science and the executive director of The Center for Vision and Values at Grove City College. Dr. Kengor noted in his article that Margaret Sanger, a darling of the Left, spoke to a women’s branch of the KKK in Silver Lake, New Jersey. She even admitted this in her 1938 biography, on pages  366 and 367 according to Dr. Kengor. I didn’t get the impression she spent too much time with the KKK other than that, but she did see this speaking engagement as a means to reaching out to other “similar groups.”

It’s really surprising that the Left is so enamored of Sanger and Planned Parenthood because Comrade Sanger was really big  on racial eugenics. In other words, she was what the leftists today call a “racist.” Yet she was one of them.

Kengor had an interesting comment in his article when he said: “Progressives today dare not raise the alarming spector of Sanger’s ‘Negro Project’ or her correspondence with Dr. Clarence Gamble, one of her Negro Project collaborators.  In a remarkable December 10, 1939 letter today held in the Sanger archives at Smith College (I have a photocopy), Sanger urged Gamble: ‘We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population’.” Now this was something the KKK might have been able to go along with.

However, in regard to the KKK here being discussed we have to remember one thing. This was not the KKK supposedly founded by Nathan Bedford Forrest sometime after the “Late Unpleasantness”—that was long gone before this. And whether Bedford Forrest had anything to do with its founding is really open to question. The Klan that surfaced in the early 1900s had nothing to do with the Klan in the South after the War. This new Klan was big and most numerous in the Midwest—Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and, apparently according to Ms. Sanger’s speaking engagement with them, in New Jersey.

So, in light of all this, I wonder how you blame all this on some “Southern Strategy” when the Klan’s biggest operation area was the Midwest. Some will say, “well, the Democrats founded the Klan.” So what? You mean to tell me that there were no Democrats anywhere in the country but the South? If you go back and read your history you will find that there was lots of Democratic opposition to Lincoln in the Midwest before and during the War. You going to blame them on the South too?

And another question—if Sanger and her organization were that interested in reducing the number of blacks in the country, then why do the blacks, especially in Congress, so warmly endorse them? Why does Obama love Planned Parenthood—and how much federal money does that group get while we are trying to blame all this leftist activity on some “Southern Strategy?” Come on folks, do the homework. Don’t just buy what the commentators say, no matter where on the spectrum they seem to be coming from. Look at the contradictions and start asking the hard questions. You’ll be surprised at how quick the subject gets changed or you are branded a “racist” for even daring to raise the questions.