You may see a billboard that has the words "Black and Unwanted" sprawled across them in the state. The billboards, put up by Arkansas Right to Life in conjunction with national organizations, are drawing both criticism and support.
One of the billboards is located on Colonel Glenn Road. It has been up a week and at least one person in this neighborhood is calling it racist and would like to see it taken down. But some say abortion is a problem in the black community and maybe this will shed some light on the issue.
From his food stand on Colonel Glenn Raymond McGehee watched the billboard go up last week.
"The first thing I saw up there was "black" and then as I watched them roll it out and it said "unwanted." It just struck me raw," says McGehee.
Arkansas Right to Life, toomanyaborted.com
, and the Radiance Foundation put up six of the billboards across the state. According to Rose Mimms with Arkansas Right to Life, black women are three times more likely to have an abortion than white women.
"We don't mean it to be offensive. We mean it to bring awareness that's the whole purpose of June is being abortion awareness month to let the African American community know that abortion is the leading cause of death for black people," says Mimms.
McGehee says that may be so but he sees this billboard as racist.
When asked if he thought it shouldn't be geared toward one race of people, McGehee said, "absolutely not because it's more than one race being aborted."
He believes it would still be effective if they dropped the word black and added a white baby.
Who is on the billboard isn't what worries Donald Gill; he's disturbed by the rate of abortions in the black community in comparison with others and believes something needs to be done.
"If it's an effective way to get people to think about the babies and making the right choices I think it's okay," says Gill.
That's what Arkansas Right to Life wants to see come out of this. There are three of the billboards in Little Rock, two in North Little Rock and one in Pine Bluff. They've already been up for a week and are expected to stay up three more weeks.