Hello dear reader(s)!
I’m sure you are aware of the possible impending shutdown of the government (along with a likely drop in our credit rating, again…which will result in lasting economic damage) over the issue of defunding Planned Parenthood. The controversy, is centered around the outrage from people who have seen heavily edited and doctored videos regarding the sale of fetal tissue. Now, let me make this clear before you continue reading…I am staunchly pro-choice…but this post is not about abortion. Well, not a lot anyway.
Planned Parenthood uses 3% of its budget for abortion services. 3%. Chuck Todd (Republican shill who should not be allowed to use journalist within 150 feet of his name), recently said that Planned Parenthood claims it is 3% but others claim it is as high as 80%. The problem, is that a real journalist would have then followed that with, “But those others are wrong, because the numbers are all subject to extensive audits and reporting requirements.” Anybody who has ever worked for any non-profit knows just how stringent the audits are. So, the number is 3%. And that 3% isn’t 3% for abortions, it is 3% for abortion services. Referrals, how to prepare, what to expect, and even the cons of a possible procedure.
I’m getting off track however. This post is not about abortion.
What it is about is the sudden outrage of politicians who voted to make the use of fetal tissue for research legal. The politicians who claim they didn’t understand the implications of what they were voting on. (That, right there, should be enough to disqualify them if they were telling the truth.) But they are not telling the truth. Thanks to creative editing, these attack videos, years in the making, have outraged a conservative anti-abortion base and now they are cowing to them in hopes to retain power. They didn’t care about it when they voted for it, and they don’t care about it now.
And why should they? The fetal tissue saves lives. Premature babies now have a greater chance than ever to survive. Stem cell research is coming very close to outright curing many previously untreatable diseases. Some cancers are already seeing the benefits of fetal tissue research.
Where are these politicians trying to shut-down In Vitro Clinics? Many, many fertilized eggs are wasted in the hope that one will attach. Yet Plan B remains controversial. Sorry, I am getting off track again, this post was not about abortion.
I have used Planned Parenthood’s services (as a man) 3 times before. 3 different Planned Parenthood locations. Let me tell you how they helped me.
The first, I was 16 years old. I had my first serious girlfriend and we had been sexually active for about 6 months. We had been using condoms, but one time, one of those condoms broke. She was not pregnant. I wanted her to get on the pill, but her mother was vehemently against it with the beliefs that if you play, you should pay. (I guess that is what she knew.) So there was no obtaining birth control from her doctor. Planned Parenthood was the only option. So we went. She got an exam, and the pill. And because we were both young and in school, with parents who disapproved, they used a sliding scale and the cost was so minimal, even I could afford it.
And that is what every single other person in the waiting room was there for.
The second time, I was a bit older, but going through a tough economic time, personally. I walked in to grab the free condoms in the little paper bag. There was a girl (and I say girl for a reason) who was in there crying. There was a staff member, or volunteer (I don’t know, somebody official) telling her she would be okay, that it wasn’t her fault someone did that to her. The woman was holding her hand and said, “But it looks like you aren’t pregnant so at least that is one less thing to worry about.” Then she started telling her about help for rape victims. I walked out with tears welling up in my eyes.
The third and final time, I went in, I was with my first wife and we were grasping at straws trying to figure out the cause of her depression and some other issues she was having. It was suggested that her hormones may have been out of whack and to try birth control to regulate them. So we went again to Planned Parenthood (no insurance) and got her birth control, which did not help her, but that had nothing to do with Planned Parenthood. While there, a woman and her daughter were waiting for a cancer screening which I only know because the daughter kept repeating to her mom, “It won’t be cancer.” Over and over again. Also, 4 guys, who were just like me, came in for the paper bags of condoms.
So if you think Planned Parenthood is all about abortion, you are mistaken. There is ample evidence to back this up, including many anecdotes like mine. This isn’t even a women’s health issue…it is a public health issue. Planned Parenthood has helped me, and the least that I can do is speak to my experiences with the organization in an attempt to help them.
Please write and call your Congressmen (I’d say, and Congresswomen, but chances are you don’t have any of those) and tell them not to attempt to defund an organization that is so beneficial to the general welfare of the people in this country.
Finally, a personal message to Congress. You do not have the votes to override a veto. You lost. Shutting down the government because you can’t follow the Constitutional principles of checks and balances from the different branches is both sneaky and skirting the spirit of the law of the land.
Not to mention…people on things like Social Security have no choice but to live month-to-month. If you withhold those payments for your political gamesmanship, you are threatening people’s very lives. And what do you think happens when people legitimately believe their lives are under immediate threat? Luckily, I have family and friends to fall back on should it come to that…but I am one of the lucky ones. This is not a threat, because I’ll be alright. But it is strong advice for you to tread very carefully about shutting down the government.