Politics and religion are always a slippery slope--both of these issues are united in the debate over Planned Parenthood’s funding creating militant supporters and opponents of the group. Just by doing a quick Google search you can find hundreds of articles in support of the organization as well as on people attacking them. I’ll admit that it is overwhelming, to say the least, and regardless of you're own opinion, you will probably leave angrier than you started.
The organization’s statement as it appears on the website says: “Planned Parenthood believes in the fundamental right of each individual, throughout the world, to manage his or her fertility, regardless of the individual's income, marital status, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, national origin, or residence. We believe that respect and value for diversity in all aspects of our organization are essential to our well-being. We believe that reproductive self-determination must be voluntary and preserve the individual's right to privacy. We further believe that such self-determination will contribute to an enhancement of the quality of life and strong family relationships.” Essentially, the mission stated is to allow all women control over their bodies and reproductive health. The organization boasts that it provides services to prevent pregnancy from occurring through educating women and providing them with birth control and contraceptives. The controversy that shrouds the organization stems not from these practices which reportedly make up 80% of their work, but from another service offered by the clinics: Abortions (3% of the services provided). Planned Parenthood does more than just pass out condoms and perform abortions. They offer cervical cancer screenings, breast exams, and even aid men in obtaining vasectomies.
According to some, the scope of these services may be an exaggeration of the impact PP actually has on the community at large. The organization is not, for instance, a primary care provider for most women and is often utilized only when a woman finds herself dealing with an accidental and/or unwanted pregnancy. Naysayers of the organization say that they do not want their tax dollars to go towards abortion and also would like the evaluation of services to reflect the difference between a pregnancy test and abortion when discussing the percentage of services provided. The main argument in opposition of aborting a pregnancy is that, according to the bible, life begins at the moment of conception and thus by terminating a pregnancy you are ending a life. Another criticism of Planned Parenthood is that the organization ended the year with a 127 million dollar profit--this figure implies that in order to keep operating, the organization does not require government funds.
President Trump has been sighted praising the organization for the help that they have provided to women with many of the services that they provide, but also warns that if they continue to offer abortions he will remove funding from the organization. House Speaker Paul Ryan points out that there are other clinics that do not offer abortions, where women may seek out medical care and that these facilities could potentially benefit more from the funding currently allocated to Planned Parenthood. Many Celebrities have also spoken out about the organization. Miley Cyrus and her Happy Hippie foundation work to raise awareness of the good that they do provide for women’s health and urge women to voice their opinions on Planned Parenthood.
The funding of Planned Parenthood is highly controversial, they do a lot of good for the women in the community but some of their practices are not widely accepted. Everyone has the right to their own opinion about the correct thing to do regarding this organization and their practices, but in order to form this opinion you need to know the facts. Below is some information I found supporting both sides of the argument: