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    Posted February 23, 2011 by
    New York, New York

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    Racial Twist on Abortion Billboard Stirs Controversy


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     sjunat55 went to go see the controversial abortion billboard in SoHo tha'’s been causing quite a stir. It's a three-story billboard on the corner of 6th Avenue and Watts Street. It's sponsored by pro-life group Life Always.
    - zdan, CNN iReport producer

    A giant billboard displayed in a corner in New York City's  trendy So-Ho neighborhood is creating quite a controversy in more ways than one.

    The ad, picturing an African American girl, reads:

    "“The most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.”

    The three story high billboard in the corner of 6th Avenue and Watts Street is sponsored by pro-life group Life Always, the first of what is intended to be a nationwide campaign

    According to local media reports, the group states "the number of abortions among African-American women is three times more than that of the rest of the population'.

    Although the billboard is displayed in the fashionable So-Ho district, home to art galleries, restaurants, expensive real estate and fancy hotels, it is also about half a mile from a Planned Parenthood facility located on nearby Bleeker Street.

    Reaction to the billboard was immediate- with some people defending it to others calling it "an effort to denigrate African American women".

    Planned Parenthood has been quoted as saying the billboard is “using a divisive message around race to restrict access to medical care.”

    But the controversy took another twist Wednesday night when in a local newscast, the mother of the girl in the photograph told reporters she " had no idea the picture of her daughter was going to be  used for this purpose and "would prefer the ad to be taken down".

    The report mentions the mother had signed a relese allowing the picture, part of a photo session, to be sold as stock photography.

    Here are some photos of the billboard taken on Wednesday, February 23, 2010 in lower Manhattan.


    Another pro-life group called Chiaroscuro Foundation has placed anti-abortion messages on New York City public buses.

    See pictures at http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-557696

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