When the critics of Planned Parenthood cry “Defund!”, it comes from a variety of stances, typically. The largest qualm, as discussed in last week’s post and spoken largely about by the president of the United States, is that many people do not want an an organization providing abortions that individuals believe they pay for with their taxes. Again, as discussed last week, this is not true. Yet, the cries for withdrawing all of the federal funding for this organization is being treated as a form of negotiation from the highest office in the country:
For the voice of the pro-defunding group, I will use the one with the most power and finality, the President:
In this new climate, it needs to be discussed what defunding the organization of Planned Parenthood would actually look like.
By defunding Planned Parenthood, many people claim that there are other, better, non-abortion providing organizations women can attend instead. They also claim that, because lowered abortion rates in Texas after the state cut funding to the organization, that there would be lower abortions and the same amount of pregnancies.
(courtesy of: Brey Peyton of The Federalist)
However, Planned Parenthood itself is estimated to be responsible for preventing 579,000 unintended pregnancies each year, according to the website. Though abortion rates in Texas lowered slightly, because their primary center to get abortions at was defunded, it does not take into account the pregnancy preventative measures Planned Parenthood provides.
Defunding the organization could also result in a significant increase in cost for taxes, which, in case you don’t remember, is something “de-funders” are particularly sensitive about, including Vice President Mike Pence.
According to the CBA, nonpartisan watchdog, “halting federal funds to Planned Parenthood would shrink spending by $520 million in the short run — but, over the first decade, it would cost taxpayers an additional $650 million,” which sounds…opposite to what “de-funders” want when they are concerned about where their taxes are going, right?
Defunding Planned Parenthood, in addition to costing taxpayers millions and taking away preventative pregnancy measures and women’s rights to their bodies, would be stripping away care for more than women.
Men and children are huge parts of the Planned Parenthood community. In fact, male patients have increased by 83% from 2002 to 2012, according to the organization’s website. The services range from cancer screenings to general physicals, making it a suitable healthcare provider for men. In addition, there are entire sections of the Planned Parenthood website devoted to raising children, from baby-care to sexual education to LGBTQ advice. Because of this breadth of services, nearly half a million people worldwide who are provided with health care services/educational services by the organization each year would lose their coverage.
In light of the changing climate both in the political and social sphere, it is important to fact check and to remain sympathetic. Those who yell “defund!” may soon have to console a sister, brother, mother, or friend who has lost something vital to them: the protections and rights provided by Planned Parenthood.