Standing in front of an anti-Planned Parenthood display in college, I had a fascinating conversation with some passersby. They were turned off by the campaign’s attack on Planned Parenthood, and they were concerned that without Planned Parenthood there would be no healthcare for needy women. “Yeah, they may do abortions, and we get that no everyone is comfortable with that.” Meeting them at common ground, I asked, “So, if there were alternative options for women’s clinics providing health services for poor women but which were not providing abortions, how would you feel about that?” “Now if you were out here talking about that,” they replied, “That would be effective. I would support that.” That is what the pro-life movement has been given the chance to say: There are other places that women can go for health services, so we can defund the largest U.S. abortion provider (and potentially criminal organization), Planned Parenthood, without harming women.
Many people do not know what Planned Parenthood does.
Planned Parenthood provides some standard contraception drugs and cancer screenings, but most people don’t know they mostly provide abortions. They also don’t know that Planned Parenthood does not, as if frequently claimed, provide mammograms. In the Live Action “Mammosham” campaign, Planned Parenthoods across the nation were called to see if they provide mammograms. None do. In fact, one response was, “You can try Christ Community Service.”
What Planned Parenthood does is basic women’s care like breast exams, pap tests, and STD testing. There is nothing complex about these services, and they are available at 9,000 community health centers in this country, quite often at discounted costs for poor women, and at many other national health centers. There may be a legitimate argument to be made about marketing these health centers to women so they know they exist more readily with better name ID, but there is not an argument to fund Planned Parenthood. Claims that without them women can’t receive good healthcare are flagrantly false. Planned Parenthood is a private, non-profit healthcare service and should have to raise its own funding from people who actual support it, just like many other faith-based pregnancy centers and medical clinics who are raising their own support. Imagine the outcry if Planned Parenthood was being forced to fund Christian healthcare with taxpayer money. And surely religious healthcare is more justifiable than abortion!
Many people do not know where else women can go.
In reality, there are many other places women can go for healthcare services. There are about 3,500 “Title X” clinics other than Planned Parenthood where women can receive birth control. Under Obamacare, all insurance companies are required to cover contraceptive services at no copay. Why would you need Planned Parenthood for birth control when the government already provides it? Planned Parenthood itself proclaims, “Thanks to Planned Parenthood and the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more than 48 million women are now eligible to receive it with no copay.” This statement implies that Planned Parenthood is a necessary component in women receiving this ACA benefit. In reality, ACA now covers copay-free contraception anywhere that accepts that insurance. Your primary care physician can prescribe this free birth control. Even your dermatologist can prescribe this free birth control. Removing the option of Planned Parenthood as a healthcare provider would not remove all options for women. The Planned Parenthood annual report even admits they are not the only place to go, but are trying to market themselves as the best of many choices: “I can choose from a range of health care providers, and I choose Planned Parenthood.”
Instead, women could make a better choice at other clinics which provide those same services, funded by Title X federal funding for family planning services, that are not Planned Parenthood and do not have to provide abortion. They can go to over 2,000 pregnancy centers in the U.S.
Breitbart reports: “Democrats in defense of Planned Parenthood, nevertheless, are once again advancing the ‘war on women’ meme against the Senate GOP’s legislation, failing to mention the fact that the bill redirects the abortion giant’s federal funding to other women’s health care facilities.” No Republican is proposing to defund women’s health, but to defund Planned Parenthood – which has been shown to be corrupt, callous, and quite possibly criminal.
By threatening that women won’t receive healthcare without Planned Parenthood, the nation’s biggest abortion provider is saying that abortion is necessary for women’s health — that everyone should believe that and fund it.
Planned Parenthood is not, however, the best choice for women.
Planned Parenthood’s list of scandals includes eugenicist founder Margaret Sanger, sex-selective abortion support, sex-abuse cover-up, minority targeting, and now the illegal trafficking of baby parts. The videos reveal they are breaking federal laws regarding partial-birth abortion, profiting from “tissue” donation, and laws about not altering the procedure to obtain this “tissue.” The Health and Human Services Guidelines imply that the doctor performing the abortion should not even know that particular baby’s parts will be donated. That is a far cry from the doctors in the undercover video huddling with staff to discuss what is needed at the beginning of the day or asking the doctor to perform a “less crunchy” procedure.
They have campaigned against commonsense legislation such as clinic safety standards, parental consent, informed consent, ultrasound viewing, and the 20-week, pain-capable bill.
What happens to aborted baby parts?
The idea that selling, or even donating (if that was what was truly happening) baby parts could in any way be justifiable is ludicrous. If we were asking a woman who wanted to be pregnant if she would consider terminating her pregnancy because “your child’s cells could save others one day,” there would be outrage. What is different about an aborted baby is that its own mother doesn’t want him or her. Never mind that couples wait in line for years to adopt children and that no child is truly unwanted. In our society, you are not human until someone wants you. “We can kill this life now, but potentially we could save lives in the future!” is not a sufficient argument for fetal research.
Unfortunately, aborted baby parts were used to develop certain vaccines. What happens is that an aborted fetus’ cells form a “cell train” where scientists essentially clone the cells and keep them functioning. The use of human cells, it is argued, is easier for developing vaccines as viruses last longer in the human cells than animal ones. There could be easy alternatives: produce the viruses from animal cells, even if they don’t last as long. Or, some might consider donating miscarried babies for research in a similar way to organ donation after any tragic death.
Cell lines have also been used by flavor-testing companies to see how aborted baby kidney cells react to an artificial flavor substance. Pepsi used this method to update their synthetic flavors. Aborted cell lines are used in certain facial crèmes to stimulate rejuvenation. (It’s not the actual aborted baby cells, but the proteins extracted from clones of those cells, that can occasionally be found in crèmes.) As revolting as this information is, it is accurate.
There are claims that aborted babies will serve the needs of those with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. We are far from treating and curing those diseases, and justifying a false hope with the death of other humans is wrong. It is not okay to kill some humans to save others; the goal should always be to save both as far as humanly possible. You can read more in a 1987 article here which also warns of the abuse of the system — potentially conceiving the intent to destroy the baby for a medical treatment or for money.
Many companies which have used aborted baby cell lines claim that no more baby parts will ever be needed, as they are now cloning cell lines; however, we see that the sale of baby parts is continuing. The public may not know the full story behind these companies, and it is likely that other experimentation is being done with aborted children’s parts. Death and exploitation is justified in the name of freedom and science.
The chart below from the Guttmacher Institute helps explain the similarity between stem cell research and research of aborted body parts, each simply obtained at different stages of pregnancy, and the federal laws regarding them.
|RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN EMBRYOS AND FETUSES
|Status of Federal Funding
|An umbrella term encompassing the study of fetuses (in utero or ex utero) or the use of fetal cells and tissues generally obtained from induced abortions.
|Used in the development of vaccines and to study aspects of cell physiology and human development.
|Allowed in accordance with 1974 law and subsequent regulations, which prohibit researchers from having any involvement in the decision to terminate a pregnancy or assessing fetal viability and forbid altering the timing or method of abortion for the sake of research and the payment of any inducements that might encourage a woman to have an abortion.
|Fetal tissue transplantation research
|Research involving transplantation of multipotent cells (differentiated cells that give rise to more specialized cells) and tissues generally obtained from aborted fetuses.
|Used to develop potential treatments for a variety of conditions, such as diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
|Allowed in accordance with 1993 law, which ensures informed consent, forbids the woman providing the tissue from being paid or knowing the identity of the recipient, forbids altering the timing or method of abortion for the sake of research and attempts to avoid the commercialization of fetal tissue.
|In vitro fertilization research
|Research on reproduction in which sperm and egg are combined in a laboratory dish, where fertilization occurs.
|Used to understand and develop treatments for infertility; IVF also used for deriving stem cells (see below).
|Effectively prohibited by 1995 law, which blocks funding for any research in which human embryos are destroyed, discarded or knowingly subjected to serious risk.
|Stem cell research
|The study of “undifferentiated,” or “pluripotent,” stem cells, which are able to divide and form into many different cell types. Stem cells can be derived from aborted fetuses, from embryos created through IVF for the sole purpose of research, from embryos created through IVF but not implanted in women being treated for infertility and through a cloning technique called somatic cell nuclear transfer.
|Used to understand factors in abnormal human development. Considered potentially useful in treating genetic disorders or organ failure and, through transplantation, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, spinal cord injury, stroke, burns, heart disease and diabetes.
|Allowed in some cases in accordance with 1993 law. Strict National Institutes of Health guidelines permit the use only of cells derived from excess embryos that had been created for fertility treatments and otherwise would be discarded; research involving stem cells derived by cloning may not be funded. Funding for the actual derivation of stem cells from embryos is prohibited by 1995 law (see In vitro fertilization research, above).
No, Planned Parenthood, You are the One Who’s Extreme
Planned Parenthood’s pathetic defense is that they were filmed without their knowledge by extremists who misrepresent things. Later, they claimed their website was hacked by extremists, but were conveniently able to post the message “We are being hacked by extremists” along with a fully functional link to comment on why you like Planned Parenthood. Having been called on that ruse, they have now changed their message to speak merely of site maintenance.
According to Life Site News, 84% of people believe abortion in the last trimester should not be legal. Planned Parenthood does. Planned Parenthood profits off its legality. Planned Parenthood wants us to remain one of only seven countries alongside Canada, Vietnam, China, North Korea, Singapore, and the Netherlands, who still allow abortions for any reason late-term. That is extreme.
What is equally extreme is Planned Parenthood’s unbelievable ability to lose all humanity in the way it’s staff and media reps callously talk of abortion, dismemberment methods, and bargain for baby part prices. What is extreme is the way they giggle looking over a petri dish full of cut up babies they killed — the way they say, “And we have another boy” … the way they callously acknowledge the humanity of the child only after they’ve ripped it to pieces.
Planned Parenthood knows it is killing babies, and it doesn’t care. It believes in the right to kill babies and make money off of it, selling children like pieces of butchered chicken.
That is what is extreme.
Calling for Action
- Investigate the criminal actions of Planned Parenthood
- End public funding to Planned Parenthood and redirect the money into women’s health centers which do not provide abortion.