Defund Planned Parenthood and Give Women Real Power
February 27, 2017
Today we interrupt this little blogging sabbatical to bring you a guest piece from Janet Garcia, a smart, tough-minded nurse and mom of two, who has seen from the front lines the cost of our all-in cultural infatuation with Planned Parenthood and all that it entails. I hope you’ll pour yourself a cup and give her words a thoughtful read. She’ll be over on the Mama Needs Coffee Facebook page moderating the civil, respectful discussion that I invite you to participate in.
Last month, Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and James Lankford (R-Okla.) introduced the “Protect Funding for Women’s Health Care Act” to the United States Senate. The bill would transfer federal funding from Planned Parenthood to other women’s health centers that do not provide abortion services. And, just a few weeks ago, the House of Representatives got rid of an Obama-era regulation which didn’t allow states to pull their funding from Planned Parenthood, allowing them to defund Planned Parenthood individually if they so choose. This movement to defund Planned Parenthood across our current Congress is in alignment with the views of most Americans: a poll released last month by Susan B. Anthony List revealed that most Americans are in favor of defunding the abortion provider, 56% in favor to 40% opposed.
Additionally, on February 11th, rallies advocating for removing federal funding occurred at over 200 Planned Parenthood locations across the US.
Sens. Ernst and Lankford’s bill needs to become law in the United States, and Planned Parenthood must lose its federal funding due to the organization’s involvement in several different ethical scandals and the way that our tax dollars are continuing to fuel the cycle of incomplete, or even incorrect, sexual education of our young people.
In case there was any doubt about this Administration and sitting Congress’s need to pass legislation such as this, recently LiveAction, the non-profit organization led by pro-life pioneer Lila Rose, uncovered yet another scandal involving Planned Parenthood. This time, the abortion giant’s utilization of “quotas” for abortion services within their clinics was brought into the light. (http://liveaction.org/abortioncorporation/ ) Employees or clinics who meet or exceed these numbers have been rewarded with perks such as “pizza parties.” And yet, the Democratic Party that has insisted for years that they want abortion to be “safe, legal and rare,” claims that we would be doing a great disservice to the women of our great country by taking away federal funds from Planned Parenthood.
The disconnect between what these politicians claim they desire for America and how, in reality, our tax dollars are being utilized by Planned Parenthood is staggering. Furthermore, last year, thanks to the Center for Medical Progress and David Daleiden, we also know that Planned Parenthood clinics across several states were involved in the trafficking of infant body parts.
We have in America today a profound disconnect between what politicians claim to want regarding funding for women’s health care, and how this end is ultimately being carried out.
Practically speaking, Planned Parenthood is directly responsible for a large portion of the sexual education received by recent generations. Young women today who have been brought up on the sexual education of our public school systems, oftentimes provided by Planned Parenthood and its affiliates, are seriously lacking in a basic understanding of how their bodies actually work.
They are unaware of the potentially abortifacient effects of hormonal contraceptives.
They are unaware that hormonal contraceptives can cause several forms of cancer, as well as dangerous, or deadly, blood clots.
They are unaware that there are times in a women’s cycle when she can become pregnant and times when it is literally impossible for pregnancy to occur.
Planned Parenthood is feeding our youth with the lies of unrestricted, consequence-free sex, and then when this isn’t what these young women experience and they become pregnant, Planned Parenthood is there to offer their abortion services and perpetuate the cycle.
As a registered nurse, I have had the privilege of bringing education and truth to the minds and hearts of teenage and young adult women about the beauty and the truth of their natural fertility, and the option of Natural Family Planning (NFP). I have seen the shock on their faces as they are told the truth of their own fertility as well the disgust, when they learn about the dangers of the contraceptives they have been told, by the likes of Melinda Gates, are a necessity for their success as modern women.
The same case must be made in defense of our international sisters around the globe. The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) decried President Trump reinstating the Mexico City Policy – something every recent GOP president has done within days of taking office – limiting funds to organizations that provide abortion services. IPPF, along with The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, are champions of providing hormonal contraceptives and abortion access to third world countries around the world, in the name of bringing them out of poverty. Nevertheless, these dangerous hormonal contraceptives carry the same concerns around the globe as they do in the US. HIV/AIDS, various forms of cancer, and embolisms are all very real consequences of using contraceptives for these impoverished women.
These women, with less education and very little information at their fingertips, are at an even greater disadvantage and are more likely to be forced or coerced into contracepting and abortion as well, without any sort of “informed consent.”
We need not look any further than the recent “One Child Policy” of China to know that Pope Paul VI was chillingly accurate when he predicted in Humane Vitae that contraceptives would become a, “dangerous weapon… in the hands of those public authorities who take no heed of moral exigencies.”
Is this kind of coercion the empowerment that modern day feminists want for themselves and their sisters around the globe?
So, where does this lead us? Obviously, women both here and abroad, deserve comprehensive sexual healthcare and education. If Planned Parenthood loses federal funding, there will be a hole left by the lack of their services. The most wonderful result of defunding Planned Parenthood will of course be the precious unborn lives that will be saved, by eliminating our tax dollars from the largest abortion provider in the US. However, I am hoping for a secondary consequence that will be the responsibility of the Women’s Health Centers, and in reality all of us who are advocating for defunding Planned Parenthood.
Mainstream, liberal, feminism claims to want female empowerment. One of the main principles of the recent Women’s March was “reproductive rights,” under which they ask for “medically accurate sexuality education.” These women claim that Planned Parenthood is a major champion in providing this sexual education; one need not look any further than Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s chic pink scarf to know how infatuated they are with Cecile Richards and her clinics. However, I would like to ask these women if their healthcare providers at Planned Parenthood ever gave them true informed consent regarding their artificial contraceptives: including the risks, alternatives and how exactly these hormones or devices work inside their bodies. I would like to ask them, “Has your healthcare provider explained to you the risk of very early-term abortions which are inherent to nearly all hormonal contraceptives?”
Of course, a portion of women will be unaffected by this information, however, what about those women who believe that when their unborn child’s whole genetic code is determined at the moment of conception, that the child is worthy of protection? Do these women not deserve “medically accurate sexuality education?”
There was a time in the not-so-distant past when women were not given a “seat at the table” or a place in the ballot box; we were not given information, so as to not burden us with it. If we are not teaching women the full truth about contraceptives and fertility, are we really so much better off than we were?
Women’s Health Centers need to become places where women can be educated about their fertility and its awesomeness. Of course, I know it is naïve to believe that a large portion of American women will become users of NFP as the result of the defunding of Planned Parenthood, however, my hope is that more women will be able to see the beauty in their fertility and feel empowered to make a truly informed choice, with complete education and understanding.
Because if our goal is to empower women, we need to explore ways to educate minds and sustain health. NFP can not only assist with preventing or delaying pregnancy, it can also help to achieve and sustain pregnancy through facilitating targeted hormone support ( http://time.com/4629589/miscarriage-progesterone-pregnancy/ )and identifying hormonal or dietary insufficiencies, among other things. Personally, I learned NFP while engaged to be married. Through charting my cycles, I was diagnosed with both hypothyroidism and low progesterone in the luteal phase. Both of these diagnoses carry with them a risk of infertility and miscarriage. I was able to reach maximum wellness in these areas through practicing NFP and do what I could to minimize these risks; how is that for female empowerment?!
All feminists, rightly so, demand that women have equal standing with men in our society. If knowledge is power, I hope that Women’s Health Centers will step up to the plate and help women reach this new level of true empowerment that Planned Parenthood has failed to provide for generations.
Janet Garcia, RN, BSN, is a “retired” registered nurse turned SAHM. During her nursing career she cared for extremely premature infants, patients on hospice and every beautiful soul in between. She enjoys sharing the truth of honest femininity, defending the most misunderstood teachings of the Church, being a political news junkie and binge watching The West Wing and Fixer Upper with her husband. Janet lives in northern Minnesota with her husband and two young children.