Despite what the GOP wants you to think, abortions provided by Planned Parenthood take up only 3 percent of the work performed by the health care service.
Abortion has and, for our lifetimes at least, will be a topic of heated debate.
Planned Parenthood isn’t just an organization that performs abortions. According to their website, 80 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services are focused on clients who want to prevent unintended pregnancies. These are services such as providing condoms, dispensing birth control and implanting intra-uterine devices.
Planned Parenthood is generally targeted for people with insufficient funds for most doctors’ offices. I’m a 21-year-old student without a job, so I don’t have money to pay the $8 for a box of condoms at Walgreens. I don’t plan on being a father anytime soon, so the free condoms at Planned Parenthood are a pretty sweet deal for me.
The website also says, “Planned Parenthood provides nearly 400,000 Pap tests and nearly 500,000 breast exams each year, critical services in detecting cancer.” These tests tend to cost less than they do at other doctors’ offices. I don’t see why we’d want to stop funding a cheap service that is responsible for detecting breast cancer; it’s only the second leading cause of death in American women.
My mother is a survivor of breast cancer. Cancer runs in my family. What if my sister couldn’t get a breast cancer test done at Planned Parenthood? She doesn’t matter because Planned Parenthood provides a service some find unethical?
Planned Parenthood conducts close to 4.5 million tests for sexually transmitted diseases each year. Over one million Americans have AIDS, and 1 in 8 people are unaware they are infected, but I guess conducting test for a disease that destroys people’s immune systems isn’t worth funding.
People are scared enough about going to get checked for STDs. If Planned Parenthood didn’t have the money to test them for HIV and AIDS, then these people are out of luck.
According to sba-list.org, a pro-life website, Planned Parenthood is responsible for 25 percent of all abortions in America. This number doesn’t offend me. In fact, I think it should be higher. The other 75 percent of abortions could partially be at-home abortions or done in some weird back alley clinic.
Sometimes I’ll walk by the Planned Parenthood on Brinkerhoff Street and see old men women with picket signs protesting abortions. Some are wheelchair-bound. I just feel bad for them. They spend their weekends protesting a helpful service. Do they even know the other work Planned Parenthood does for people besides abortions?
Apparently, as long as Planned Parenthood provides abortions, their other services, which take considerably more of their time and money, aren’t worth jack.
Some GOP representative members, such as Jason Chaffetz, of Utah, say the issue isn’t abortion but rather affluent government funding.
According to slate.com, an online news source, “more than 80 percent of the money Planned Parenthood gets from the federal government is Medicaid reimbursement. It isn’t assigned to Planned Parenthood up front. It’s paid as compensation to clinics for services they’ve delivered to people covered by Medicaid. If those people choose other doctors or clinics, Planned Parenthood doesn’t get paid.”
Sorry Chaffetz, but you just got lawyer-ed.
Planned Parenthood provides important health care services to Americans. Yes, they do conduct abortions, but that’s only a small percent of their work load. Without the majority of the services provided by Planned Parenthood things like cancer, AIDS and teen pregnancy would most likely increase. Keep that in mind next time GOP members viciously berate a woman at a congressional hearing.
Email Griffin Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org