Lawson: Planned Parenthood defunding is unethical


Tyler Coffey/Iowa State Daily

Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards listens to an audience member’s question after her speech on Oct. 4.

Angelica Lawson

Just after Donald Trump was elected and inaugurated as the president of the United States, laws began to get passed that would limit the scope of abortions and eliminate Planned Parenthood funding.

These newly-formed laws on abortion make it illegal for a woman to receive a safe and legal abortion, and remove vital funding for Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood has not been able to escape headlines since the first state passed legislation that removed its state funding. This defunding movement gained headway after a video was released claiming that Planned Parenthood performed late-term abortions and sold the body parts of the removed fetus to medical labs for research purposes. It has since been concluded that the video was severely altered, and no truth came from those videos. Still, many states have have defunded Planned Parenthood.

The removal of state funding hurts Planned Parenthood by limiting its resources to provide health care needs to its communities. Although Planned Parenthood has become synonymous with abortions, it provides so much more. It provides basic health care needs — pap smears, breast examinations, STD testing, education on safe sex and much more — so why are so many lawmakers and pro-life activists concerned with just one aspect of the services it offers?

These people disagree with one thing and feel the need to destroy and defame a non-profit organization that is serving its shared communities in many ways. The pro-life activists who claim to be “fighting” for the children who do not have a voice do so in a kind of irony. They are fighting for a “life” that hinges upon someone else feeding it, sheltering it and ultimately sustaining it until it can sustain itself.

Instead of trying to force your personal definition of a life, how about we use resources to enrich and protect the lives that are not up for an argument? Since when did being pro-life mean a fetus has more rights than the one sustaining it? Perhaps, instead of lobbying for legislation that would limit the scope of a woman’s reproductive rights, we lobby for mandatory education about what safe sex is, and how to prevent an unplanned pregnancy or make all forms of birth control free to drastically reduce the number of unplanned pregnancies. But here’s the real kicker:

You could just leave this alone and let a woman use her best judgment on what is right for her and her family. Stop telling people they do not have the right to not become a parent if they wish to not be one.

Be pro-life in a way that protects the lives of the people who are here, on this earth, eating and breathing on their own accord. Removing Planned Parenthood will not stop abortions; there will still be private physicians who perform abortions, and there are many other clinics throughout the United States. Making abortions illegal doesn’t end abortions; it ends safe abortions.

Roe v. Wade made it possible for women in this country to assert their rights over their bodies. With these new laws being passed and the threat of reversing Roe v. Wade from our fearless leader, President Trump, we need to ask ourselves if we are really pro-life if we are not going to protect the lives of the women of the United States.

Are you pro-life in a way that you would fund programs that actually show people what it means to be a single parent; what it means to have a child when you are not ready to be a parent? Are you pro-life in a way that you want to provide sexually active people access to free birth control so they can plan when their tenure as parents begins?

We need to stop this assault on Planned Parenthood and on women’s reproductive rights. Let your lawmakers know that you do not support these types of legislation, and stand with Planned Parenthood.