(photo via Breitbart.com)
Recent controversy has arisen after the release of a series of videos by the Center for Medical Progress exploiting Planned Parenthood’s illegal selling baby parts for a profit. These videos have led to demands that congress should defund the organization because of its action and congress has launched an investigation in response. However, the fight for the defunding of Planned Parenthood goes far deeper than a series of videos, but into the organization itself. Supporters of the government’s allocation of tax payer dollars to fund Planned Parenthood argue that the organization promotes women’s health; however, using taxpayer’s dollars to fund abortions and the illegal harvesting of organs cannot be justified when there are privately owned alternatives that focus only on advancing the health of women.
From the beginning, Planned Parenthood was an organization undeserving of federal tax dollars as its founder, Margaret Sanger, was a known racist with the desire to control the population (Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now) and eliminate minorities. Whether pointing to the need for “sterilization of inferior races,” (Planned Parenthood’s Racism) or writing that “The most merciful thing that a large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it,” (Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now) Sanger constantly fought to accomplish this goal. While some may sight Sanger’s motives as a piece of the past, William L. Davis, a black financial analyst, remarks that it “doesn’t take an expert to realize that the organization is indeed [racist], (Planned Parenthood’s Racism)” not only because of its history, but also Planned Parenthood’s present focus on race-based programs-specifically targeting minorities (Planned Parenthood’s Racism). According to BlackGenocide.org, a sister company of L.E.A.R.N. Northwest, “Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion provider in America (BlackGenocide.org)” and “78% of their clinics are in minority communities” (BlackGenocide.org). After observing the evidence above, it would be easy to conclude that Planned Parenthood is indeed an organization that targets their services, specifically abortion, towards minorities. Therefore, many important questions are raised concerning the use of tax payer dollars to fund the organization. Why is the United States government supporting an organization with racist roots? In most circumstances, government officials condemn anything with a history of racism, so why is this an exception? Why is an organization with a history of racism being supported by the President and congress through the allocation of approximately 528 million tax payer dollars (Torre)?
Why is the United States government supporting an organization with racist roots? In most circumstances, government officials condemn anything with a history of racism, so why is this an exception? Why is an organization with a history of racism being supported by the President and congress through the allocation of approximately 528 million tax payer dollars (Torre)?
Secondly, why is the United States funding a top cause of death of minorities? After researching statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, theatlantic.com concluded that, “An African-American woman is almost five times likelier to have an abortion than a white woman, and a Latina more than twice as likely” (Dutton). The Center for Disease Control and prevention also released a statistic stating that 55% of abortions are minorities even though they only make up 28.9% of the population. If this continues, the two minority groups could suffer a major decrease in population over time which would be detrimental to the country both economically and politically. With many Planned Parenthood clinics being a walking distance from most minority houses and their primary service being abortion, Planned Parenthood is a direct contributor to the reduction of minority races. (Abortion and Race)
With many Planned Parenthood clinics being a walking distance from most minority houses and their primary service being abortion, Planned Parenthood is a direct contributor to the reduction of minority races. (Abortion and Race)
The questionable nature of Planned Parenthood Federation does not stop with its foundation, but shows itself through accusations against various Planned Parenthood clinics. In New Jersey, Lila Rose’s Live Action exploited the clinic’s employee offering to assist a pimp as she provided him with another facility that could perform abortions with less guidelines along with advice about how to answer the questions the clinic might ask (Planned Parenthood Exposed). Planned Parenthood has even acknowledged that its staff should be retrained to prevent it from further participation in illegal activity (Cecile Richards: Abortion Is 86% of Planned Parenthood’s Revenue) however, this is not the only example of Planned Parenthood’s questionable employees. The most recent case being exhibited by The Center for Medical Progress’ video series which has been released over the past few months. The videos exposed Planned Parenthood’s harvesting of organs for a profit, the manipulation of the abortion to preserve certain organs, and the lack of facts presented to the patient concerning their abortion. (CMP’s Open Letter to Congress in Reply to Planned Parenthood’s Aug. 27 Letter)
The Center for Medical Progress’ release of these videos has led many, including congress to question whether or not Planned Parenthood’s actions are breaking multiple laws. In its issue briefing conservative think tank, The Heritage Foundation, cites a law implemented by congress entitled 42 U.S.C. 289g-2 which states that it is illegal “’to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce.”’ “Valuable consideration” is the key phrase here making the sale of human tissue illegal for profit. (Lamontagne) In many of the videos released by CMP, Planned Parenthood employees, including executives, are bragging about their efforts to provide high quality tissue and maximize profit (Hemingway). Critics of the video point out that if Planned Parenthood is not making a profit, but just charging enough to compensate the cost of the procedure what they are doing is legal. However, this argument has no validity after looking at the evidence. With statements from Harry O’Donnell, an employee who assisted in the harvesting of organs at a Planned Parenthood clinic such as, “It’s basically a huge trafficking of fetal tissues (Hemmingway),” in reference to the organization’s harvesting of organs it is difficult to conclude that the process is performed with good intentions. The Center for Medical Progress, in its letter to those in congress conducting the investigation, also presents evidence supporting Planned Parenthood’s illegal profit made off of the harvesting of aborted babies’ organs by citing Planned Parenthood Cooperate Executive, Cecile Richards. The letter cites Richards’ statement that Planned Parenthood is payed around sixty dollars “per tissue specimen” to cover the cost of the procedure. While this may seem reasonable, it neglects to acknowledge that by performing one procedure which can produce more than one organ leading to a profit. Even more controversial is the original claim that Planned Parenthood needs to charge sixty dollars to offset costs since they do not perform the dissection or shipping of the organs therefore causing the questioning of the need to offset nonexistent costs. Could this be an attempt to make profit as well? (CMP’s Open Letter to Congress in Reply to Planned Parenthood’s Aug. 27 Letter) Even if this not an attempt for profit the very questioning of the ethics of Planned Parenthood by the people should at least result in the temporary defunding of the organization until an investigation is complete.
Planned Parenthood’s profit oriented business model also evidences itself through the abortion procedure itself. Both and a statement by Richard’s where she acknowledged the possible change in the abortion procedure to allow for high quality tissue to be produced. This is a problem for two reasons, the first being that it breaks federal law which is used to prevent such actions. Secondly it leads to the manipulation of the customer who in the consent form is promised that the abortion will not be performed differently just to obtain “blood or the tissue.” (CMP’s Open Letter to Congress in Reply to Planned Parenthood’s Aug. 27 Letter)
Not only is Planned Parenthood itself an organization that should not be funded because of it breaking federal laws, but the act of funding Planned Parenthood itself is illegal. In 2013, the Hyde Amendment Codification Act, sponsored by Democratic Senator Robert Casey, barred the use of federal dollars to fund abortion unless it is because of rape or the health of the mother (S.142 – Hyde Amendment Codification Act113th Congress). Therefore, one can conclude that the federal government funding Planned Parenthood is illegal. Through Title X, a grant for organizations assisting in family planning, and Medicaid reimbursements Planned Parenthood is able to receive millions of taxpayer dollars a year. While Planned Parenthood may argue that this money does not go to abortions, it is hard to believe that no Title X money is used to buy equipment, rent facilities, or even cover the costs of some procedures. Additionally, as a Title X recipient, Planned Parenthood provides services such as adoption recommendations to validate its status as a family planning program, but the amount of adoption recommendations have decreased by 61% in recent years while abortions have increased by 66% (Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now). This proves further that Planned Parenthood is an organization centered on its abortion services and not the others it claims to provide. As a result, congress should remove Title X funding to Planned Parenthood and allow an organization focused on all aspects of family planning to receive it. (Torre)
However the main provider of government dollars does not come from the Title X program, but form Medicaid reimbursements. (Torre) With so many alternative clinics and health centers in the United States, the need for the government to fund Planned Parenthood through Medicaid is really nonexistent. In fact, it could even be beneficial to women as they are forced to choose alternative clinics that provide more services than just abortions and STD testing. Alternative clinics provide mammograms, cancer screenings, and other services for men, women, and children allowing for more people to benefit from a wider range of services (Cecile Richards: Abortion Is 86% of Planned Parenthood’s Revenue). These clinics would most likely use tax payer’s money more effectively as well by focusing on health services as opposed to throwing parties, paying their CEO a lavish salary, or buying expensive real estate in New York. By spending money on frivolous things Planned Parenthood is potentially depriving women of healthcare services further discrediting its argument (Cecile Richards: Abortion Is 86% of Planned Parenthood’s Revenue).
Therefore, Congress should remove all funding of Planned Parenthood and work to transfer these funds to alternative clinics. Supporters of the government’s allocation of tax payer dollars to fund Planned Parenthood argue that the organization promotes women’s health; however, using taxpayer’s dollars to fund abortions and the illegal harvesting of organs cannot be justified when there are privately owned alternatives that focus only on advancing the health of women.
“Abortion and Race.” The Case Against Abortion:. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Oct. 2015.
“BlackGenocide.org | Planned Parenthood.” BlackGenocide.org | Planned Parenthood. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2015.
“Cecile Richards: Abortion Is 86% of Planned Parenthood’s Revenue.” N.p., 30 Sept. 2015. Web. 02 Oct. 2015.
“CMP’s Open Letter to Congress in Reply to Planned Parenthood’s Aug. 27 Letter.” The Center for Medical Progress. N.p., 31 Aug. 2015. Web. 01 Oct. 2015.
Dutton, Zoe. “Abortion’s Racial Gap.” The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 22 Sept. 2014. Web. 08 Oct. 2015.
Hemingway, Mollie. “A Quick And Easy Guide To The Planned Parenthood Videos.” The Federalist. N.p., 29 Sept. 2015. Web. 30 Sept. 2015.
“International Planned Parenthood Federation.” SpringerReference (2011): n. pag. Web. 30 Sept. 2015.
Lamontagne, Ovide. “Planned Parenthood Is Accused of Harvesting Organs from Aborted Babies. Is That Illegal?” National Review Online. N.p., 14 July 2015
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Planned Parenthood Manager Offers to Help Sex Ring, Gets Fired. Planned Parenthood Exposed. Live Action, n.d. Web. 09 Oct. 2015.
“Planned Parenthood’s Racism.” N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Oct. 2015.
“Planned Parenthood Exposed.” Planned Parenthood Exposed. N.p.,n.d.Web.08 Oct. 2015.
“S.142 – Hyde Amendment Codification Act113th Congress (2013-2014).” S.142. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Oct. 2015.
“Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now.” Top 12 Reasons to Defund Planned Parenthood Now. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Sept. 2015.
Torre, Sarah. “Congress Should End Federal Funding to Planned Parenthood and Redirect It Toward Other Health Care Options.” The Heritage Foundation. N.p., 22 Sept. 2015. Web. 30 Sept. 2015.