Every American Should Be Supporting Planned Parenthood. Especially If They're Pro-Life.
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Every American Should Be Supporting Planned Parenthood. Especially If They're Pro-Life.

It's neither as simple nor as complicated as we're making it seem.

Every American Should Be Supporting Planned Parenthood. Especially If They're Pro-Life.

In the wake of women's marches across the globe that drew hundreds of thousands of supporters to the streets, Donald Trump and many Republican lawmakers have continued to wage a war on Planned Parenthood and many organizations like it.

One of President Trump's first actions in office was to reinstate the Mexico City Policy, essentially banning any foreign non-governmental organization (NGO) that is receiving funding from the United States for family planning initiatives from supporting or administering abortions.

In short: foreign NGOs may not use any funds, even funds coming from their own government or elsewhere, to perform abortions, to give referrals for abortions, or to provide information about abortions if they want to continue receiving support from the United States.

In addition, the last month has been filled with promises from Republican lawmakers like Paul Ryan to defund Planned Parenthood, an organization that, among many other services, administers abortions.

And many people are totally fine with all of that, and part of me gets it. But stick with me here.

Nobody, Pro-Choice or Pro-Life, wants to have more abortions. Nobody discusses these topics and hopes that a woman will find herself in a situation where she chooses to have an abortion, because as both sides of the aisle have admitted, that's an emotional experience that no one can imagine without having been through it. No Pro-Choice lawmaker is rallying for a higher volume of women scarred by the choices they made.

In a perfect world, only women who wanted to be a mother and had the means to be a good one would get pregnant, and those women who didn't simply wouldn't.

But this isn't a perfect world.

And despite the fact that I was raised to love all babies and to dream about motherhood, and more tangibly, despite that I was fortunate enough to know that I would have support from my family if I found myself in that situation even if it wasn't ideal, I can't look at a woman who was raped, or a woman who has to choose between her life and her unborn child's, or even a woman who has found herself pregnant and, for any number of reasons, unable to be the kind of mother every child deserves, and say to her that I or the lawmakers that tell her what she can and cannot do with her body understand what she's feeling or what she's going through.

In short, I understand that despite my own feelings and my deeply imbedded privilege, no unwanted pregnancy will ever be as simple as whatever the law happens to be at that time.

Which brings me to my point. Because regardless of where you stand on the issue, your ideal is zero abortions needed. But that's not the reality, and we have to take that into consideration at least for now.

Stopping funding to places like Planned Parenthood is a ludicrous idea, and my reasoning expands from two general places.

The first point is simply about abortion, and it's a point that I think can be made by people who are on either side of this argument, even if you don't buy in to women having that right to make the choice to have an abortion.

If President Trump truly believes that outlawing abortion and halting any funds to organizations that give abortions will simply make the problem disappear, he's not thinking clearly or comprehensively.

Even worse, if he realizes that outlawing safe and sterile abortions in clean facilities will simply lead women seeking abortions to unsafe methods that are, at best, dangerous, and at worst, life threatening, that's simply an indication that he stops caring about women and their health once they've decided to have an abortion.

Regardless of your ideas about abortion, it's irresponsible and callous to declare that anyone seeking an abortion deserves whatever "punishment" befalls them. That's not a way of thinking I would categorize as Pro-Life.

And even if my first point doesn't sit right with you, anyone on the Pro-Life side of things should know all the facts about Planned Parenthood that inhabit my second point.

One of the statistics thrown around by proponents of Planned Parenthood is that of all services provided by the organization, only about 3% are abortions. To be clear, this number is accurate, and is determined by collecting data on each service rendered, not on the number of people helped.

Apart from abortions, Planned Parenthood does a ton. They test for and treat STIs and STDs, perform breast exams, give referrals for low-cost mammograms, provide contraception in the form of condoms and birth control, administer emergency contraception, perform female sterilization procedures, performvasectomies,administer and refer patients for various kinds of cancer preventative measures, screenings, and treatments, perform pregnancy tests and give prenatal care and/or give referrals for prenatal doctors, treat UTIs, give general family planning advice and assistance to both men and women, serve as OBGYNs, giveoverall reproductive checkups to women and men, and provide patients with information about and referrals for adoption agencies and options.

If you didn't want to read that paragraph because it was too lengthy, here's the Spark Notes version: not only does Planned Parenthood benefit patients by administering many services other than abortions, butit is alsoa fact,pointed out plainly by statistics, that they do FAR MORE topreventunwanted pregnancies than they do to terminate them.

In short, nobody wants the number of abortions to grow. But the idea that an organization like Planned Parenthood that does so much at such a low cost to those in need would lose funding and inevitably close down simply because of a small section of their procedures is unsettling.

To dismantle a place where people can feel safe and cared for in speaking plainly about their bodies and in receiving clean, affordable, and safe treatment without judgment would be a mistake, and from a standpoint of someone who doesn't have the perfect answer, but is hopeful that her country can find it through contemplation, discussion, and careful consideration, I implore you, Pro-Choice or Pro-Life, to stand up for the fact that this "solution" is not a solution at all, and that we owe it to ourselves and to each other to find a better answer.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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