Friday, July 27, 2012

I Stand With Planned Parenthood

I am hesitant to begin this post, as I have chosen quite a controversial topic: Texas funding of Planned Parenthood. First, I would like to point out that when I discuss this topic, I am not simply referring to abortion (which is only one of the services Planned Parenthood provides). Please see this article on Planned Parenthood's website to get a full view of what they provide: women's health care, education, global health care, and much more. In fact, according to an article in the Huffington Post, "None of the eight Planned Parenthoods that participate in the Texas Women's Health Program offer abortions, and Planned Parenthood accounts 40 percent of the program's services to low-income women across the state" (Bassett). Therefore, by stripping state funding from these clinics, the health and well-being of low-income women across the state will be jeopardized. 

The Republicans seem to be relying heavily on the argument that "it's inherently wrong to use taxpayer dollars to fund an organization that performs abortions" (Republican politician, Sid Miller). While I personally disagree with this statement, it isn't even relevant. As I mentioned earlier, Planned Parenthood is about so much more than abortions. In Texas, dozens of the clinics that will suffer from a lack of funding don't even perform abortions. So, it is completely illogical to use the abortion excuse as a reason to cut funding from clinics that simply provide women's health care and education. 

Coming from a strictly financial perspective, Texas has already cut funding for women's clinics by two-thirds. According to an NPR article, "the Texas Legislative Budget Board estimates those cuts will result in roughly 20,000 additional unplanned births" (Goodwyn). Texas is already the state that spends the most money on unplanned teen births. So taking funding away from an agency that educates teens on contraceptives in fact harms the economy. 

Looking at the situation from these different perspectives, I just don't see how the state can justify stripping Planned Parenthood of its funding.


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