A video made by the friend of a friend popped up on my Facebook newsfeed a couple weeks ago. It was about the videographer’s sister, who I used to know through church, and the friend who posted it commended her for the courage it took to make the video.
She told the story of how her birth mother, a high school dropout and drug addict, had no hope, no future, one abortion under her belt and another child on the way when she found out she was pregnant again. Through an organization called His Nesting Place, she made the decision to give her child up for adoption instead of aborting.
I hear stories like these, and then I hear the battle cries of the people who are defending the “rights of women” and my heart breaks. At the forefront of this battle is Planned Parenthood, which has recently come under attack from the media because of videos released of Planned Parenthood officials picking through human fetal tissue and haggling over prices.
In response to the videos, and as a result of several long years of debate over the ethics of abortion, Republican senators made several attempts to push a bill through Congress to defund Planned Parenthood but none have made it through.
Those arguing in defense of Planned Parenthood claim these bills mark the attack
on women’s rights by the religious right-wing. They provide statistics in support of the
organization, like the fact that only 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services go toward abortion. They argue that without Planned Parenthood, millions would lose their access
to contraceptives and proper sexual health care. They also claim that
government-funded healthcare is a right and that women have a right to their
As a woman and a strong advocate of personal freedom, I still cannot help but wonder where we went so wrong that we are now arguing at what point it is moral to end a child’s life.
At the most basic level, it is ludicrous that the government endorses this organization at the price of $500 million a year with taxpayer money, according to Planned Parenthood’s 2013-2014 annual report. Although only 3 percent of the services go toward abortion, as the same report states, this money, a portion of which comes from citizens like me who do not agree with the mission statement of the organization, goes into Planned Parenthood’s general pool of funds.
But the most heartbreaking thing for me, again as a woman who is a staunch supporter of retaining one’s rights, is that though a woman has the right to her own body, once she is pregnant, it no longer is her own body. No one is giving the child a choice and that child’s unheard voice is getting lost in politics.
Although the solution is not easy, Congress can pass a bill to end government donations toward Planned Parenthood, causing it to lose its largest source of funding. If the organization ceases to exist, there are thousands of community health clinics and nonprofit organizations like His Nesting Place across the United States that provide alternative solutions for pregnancy, such as adoption, and sexual health care.
If Planned Parenthood is such a valuable resource like many people argue, then it will continue to exist but on private funds and donations—the way that it should be. The people that want to give their money can still do so, and the people who do not will be able to have that choice, as well. The idea is not to shut down Planned Parenthood, after all. It is to remove the federal stamp of approval by defunding it and to stop using the hard-earned money of people like me to fund
This movement is not an attack on women’s rights. It is a desperate attempt to stop the genocide that has for so long dwelt under the radar. Nearly six million abortions have
taken place since abortion was legalized in the United States. It is time to remove the politics and start making