Powerful Special Interest: Planned Parenthood
The issue of women’s health has been widely discussed this year. The release of highly edited and very controversial videos aimed at attacking Planned Parenthood has sparked an outcry from social conservatives. It is believed the videos may have even influenced a recent shooting of a Planned Parenthood clinic. Earlier this year, in response to the videos, Republican lawmakers set out to defund Planned Parenthood. In the process of doing so they found the only special interest group in the country that is capable of stopping the entire federal government. The president even went as far as to refuse to sign any budget that doesn’t fund the special interest group, easily making it more powerful than the equally controversial National Rifle Association. However, the dialogue on the issue has been so far plagued with dishonest propaganda and meaningless rhetoric.
Myth 1: Without Planned Parenthood women will have nowhere to go
The proponents of Planned Parenthood, including the president, brilliantly framed the debate as an issue of women’s health, except it is not. The DNC and Planned Parenthood executives made sure that voters felt the two were inseparable, but in reality there are anywhere between 9,000 to 12,000+ community health centers providing free to low cost health services for women and men. Only 700 of these clinics are ran by Planned Parenthood. If we stop funding Planned Parenthood and start funding other clinics (as proposed by republican lawmakers), we will not likely see a decrease in the number of clinics or access to women’s health care.
Myth 2: Taxpayers don’t pay for abortions
Republicans only asked that we fund the clinics that do not provide abortion so our tax dollars aren’t used to subsidize the practice. It is already illegal to use taxpayer dollars to directly fund abortions, however indirect funding still happens. The government gives Planned Parenthood over half a billion dollars a year. Think of it this way, if you are given a $500 monthly voucher to pay your rent, that frees up $500 for whatever else you want to buy. Half a billion dollars in public funds frees up a lot of resources, and that makes it easier to provide abortion. The easy solution to this problem is to simply fund clinics that do not provide abortion services to ensure tax dollars are nowhere near it and women get the care they need. The moral objections of the American taxpayers should be accounted for. It wouldn’t be fair nor acceptable to give tax dollars to the gun lobby, but for some reason it is perfectly fine to give hundreds of millions of tax dollars to abortion lobbyist.
Myth 3: Planned Parenthood needs the money
No private organization should be allowed to live off of public funding. That is the textbook incubation of cronyism. Planned Parenthood has many high level donors that have given and will give anything to keep their doors open. They do not need our money. Currently, Planned Parenthood receives 40% of its funding from the government.
Conclusion: If you are tired of special interest running Washington you must be willing to sacrifice your own special interest.
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