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King's niece speaks at Knox rally

Pro-Life Freedom Ride leaves today for Chattanooga


Ben Cannon
Freelance contributor to the News Sentinel - Knoxville, TN


Dr. Martin Luther King's niece told a Knoxville crowd Friday night that her cause - the fight against abortion - is "the civil-rights movement of our time."

Dr. Alveda King spoke Friday night at the Tennessee Theatre as the Pro-Life Freedom Ride for the Unborn kicked off its second leg.

King said she had been an abortion-rights advocate and had an abortion earlier in her life.

But a series of events, including speaking with the father of her children and her own father, caused her to rethink her stance on abortion.

"Hearing them speak, and seeing the ultrasound (of her unborn child) made me change my mind," King said.

The Pro-Life Freedom Ride for the Unborn was organized nationally by Priests for Life.

It began its second leg in Knoxville with a concert and speeches by King and Father Frank Pavone.

The first stage of the rally was in Birmingham, Ala., in July.

Participants will board a bus at 11 a.m. today after a prayer vigil beginning at 9 a.m. in front of the Planned Parenthood office on Cherry Street.

The bus will then head toward Chattanooga, which organizers say is one of the only cities of its size in the nation that has no abortion clinics or Planned Parenthood offices.

"We'd like to see our nation abortion free," said Lisa Morris, one of the local event's organizers.

Three Catholic High School students stood in front of the Tennessee Theatre on Friday night holding signs against abortion.

"The truth is that it's a life," said Courtney Campbell, 17, leader of the Irish Fighting for Life student organization that came with more than 200 others in support of the rally at the theater.


Priests for Life
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