Anna’s Video Pick: Planned Parenthood Up Close & Personal

by on April 8, 2011 · 32 comments

in Anna's Video Pick, Health, Popular, Women's Rights

As I write this, the US Congress has still not agreed on a budget to keep our government from shutting down. The sticking point between paying our soldiers and keeping federal offices functioning is a rider which the Republicans introduced to eliminate funding to Planned Parenthood—or as they pitch it, to eliminate funding for abortions.

I am trying to stop screaming and banging my head against the wall. Even the progressive alternative media has presented the issue completely in terms of the utterly fact-less Republican narrative. This is not about abortion!

Sen. John Kyl walked back his incendiary and erroneous attack upon Planned Parenthood funding in which he stated that well over 90% of what Planned Parenthood does goes to abortion. Here’s his “clarification” — “his remark was not intended to be a factual statement, but rather to illustrate that Planned Parenthood, a organization that receives millions of dollars in taxpayer funding, does subsidize abortion.”

And it is correct- Planned Parenthood provides abortions in addition to all their other women’s health services. And no, absolutely no federal funding goes to the provision of those abortions.

So keep in mind- when the Republicans speak, their remarks are not intended to be a factual statement. We got this information from John Kyl (R-AZ) himself.

Full disclosure- When I arrived in San Diego 33 years ago, I worked a couple of years for a temp agency and had no health insurance. Planned Parenthood essentially became my primary health provider that included affordable pap smears, mammograms and birth control and pretty much everything else.

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

annagrace April 8, 2011 at 9:31 pm

A shout out to DougBob for fanning the flames….


Patty Jones April 8, 2011 at 9:44 pm

And gawd forbid you have a vagina and are poor!


Gary Ghirardi April 9, 2011 at 1:22 pm

The same people who are advocating cutting abortion funding for the poor are the first to complain about the poor having too many children!


Jill April 12, 2011 at 8:35 am

The “poor” like the “rich” need to be responsible for the children they create. If you can’t provide for YOUR kids with YOUR $ – don’t ask me to fund it. Cross your legs or USE CONDOMS OR BIRTH CONTROL. Someone just called where I work looking for “help” – She has children ages 5,4,3,2,1 and a NEW BORN – STOP HAVING KIDS if you can’t afford it – PRACTICE SAFE SEX – I can understand one unplanned pregnancy – or if you’re really careless 2 – but 6 – PLEASE figure out what causes it and STOP DOING IT….


annagrace April 12, 2011 at 12:12 pm

One more reason to support Planned Parenthood and abortion access and sex education.


Andy Cohen April 12, 2011 at 11:27 am


Can that be any clearer? THERE IS NO ABORTION FUNDING THROUGH THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT! PERIOD!!! The Hyde Amendment, among other things, absolutely and without exception guarantees this. (OK, there are three exceptions: Incest, rape, and when the life of the mother is threatened by the pregnancy, but that’s it and those are extraordinary circumstances.)

Abortion services account for a whopping 3% of the total services Planned Parenthood provides. None of that is funded by the government.

What Planned Parenthood does do–and what is funded, in part, by the government–is provide access to various kinds of contraception including birth control pills, cancer screenings, and other health services in no way related to abortion.

Yes, Planned Parenthood provides access to abortion services. But much of the rest of what they do helps to ensure that an abortion is the absolute last resort; they work to make abortions unnecessary. They also provide vital health care to women (and some men) who otherwise would have no access to it……healthcare services that have absolutely nothing to do with abortion. But without Planned Parenthood the need for MORE abortions would skyrocket. So you see, Planned Parenthood actually PREVENTS abortions in the overwhelming majority of cases.

Abortion is only 3% of the total services that Planned Parenthood provides. AND THOSE SERVICES ARE NOT FUNDED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. It’s time for the Repubs and their TeaBagger toadies to stop propagating these lies.


Abby April 9, 2011 at 12:46 am

It’s time for all women to pull a Lysistrata and cut these assclowns off until they get it through their heads that they can not control our bodies!


annagrace April 9, 2011 at 7:05 am

As you said elsewhere Abby, how’s that small government thing working out for us.


Gobnait April 9, 2011 at 5:16 am

Right on, AG! The cruelest irony is that the right wing, tea party types think their sperm is sacred, apparently, and they are very concerned about it during gestation. Once born, however, a poor child is no longer of interest to them. Cut WIC, Food Stamps, AFDC, Head Start, Medicaid, CHIP – anything that benefits the poor and their children but don’t touch that corporate welfare!! (Oh, and cut public spending for NPR, public television, the arts, and any other medium which might expose the “remarks not intended to be factual statements.”


nunya April 9, 2011 at 9:36 am

Absoutely! I’m a lousy typist, so thanks for your comment, you said exactly what I wanted to :)


Dave Rice April 10, 2011 at 10:45 pm

Love the fetus, hate the child! It’s been the right-wing mantra for as long as I can remember…and I can’t believe it took me so long to catch Anna’s video this week, it rocks! And so do you, my fire-headed shee-ro!


annagrace April 11, 2011 at 8:37 am

:) Thanks Dave!


Jill April 12, 2011 at 8:37 am

Ummmmm – I’m not rich – can barely pay my bills – almost had my gas cut at my house last month – but I am responsible for the kids I have – I’ll get another part time job beofre I live off food stamps (unless I have no other alternative – never say never) – It’s the people who keep having kids to get more $ that piss us (the right wing, tea party types) off – You guys are actually missing the point. Quit spending money that you don’t have – It’s sad to read how uniformed you all are.


annagrace April 12, 2011 at 12:21 pm

Jill-The fact that you are working and struggling to pay your bills speaks volumes about our economy which was brought to the verge of collapse by Wall Street and corporate interests. You are in a pretty big boat with a lot of other struggling Americans. Are you ok with GE paying no taxes or with Bank of America paying no taxes or corporate CEO’s getting record bonuses?

this is not a tea party type forum or the U-T comments section.


Abby April 12, 2011 at 2:09 pm

Shhhh, listen! Can you hear that? It’s the worlds smallest violin, and it’s playing the worlds saddest song, and it’s just for you Jill!

Do you think you are the only person having a hard time right now? Do you really want to take away access to family planning for poor people? because having more unwanted children will be less of a drain on the system?

Planned parenthood provides birth control, which means less unplanned babies that you don’t want to support with your tax dollars. You are being very short sighted.

Maybe you wouldn’t be so broke if you’d taken your own advice and practiced safe sex.


judi April 9, 2011 at 7:06 pm

Pretty soon we can lock up all the people with vagina’s and then wonder where the women are. Love the video. I hope all of those people that are voting to do away with funding for women’s issues find their daughters and wives knocked up with no place to go. Oops…that’s right. The have a Different Health Care program!


Goatskull April 10, 2011 at 7:39 am

Oddly enough, there are hardcore right wing women who actually support stamping PP right out of existence. I have the sucky privilege of working with a couple of them. Kind of selling out their own gender.


annagrace April 10, 2011 at 8:56 am

This surprises me too Goatskull. I wonder where they get their birth control and abortions and mammograms etc. Even extremely right wing women do not normally have five or six kids….


Annie April 21, 2011 at 9:14 pm

I wonder which one of them has had an abortion. It wouldn’t surprise me in the least.


annagrace April 21, 2011 at 10:29 pm

One out of three women has had an abortion. I have never ever been in circumstances in which this has not been true.


Gobnait April 10, 2011 at 10:04 am

No, they have a retinue of high-priced doctors at their beck and call who take care of every wrinkle, sagging whatever, and whatever pills or procedures they need. A rabid right wing woman called one of our local talk shows last night complaining about Planned Parenthood AND Medicare. She said: “I have my own insurance and I resent having to pay for someone else. I pay my own way….blah, blah, blah. Then she added that she would, however, support “passing out birth control pills on the corner.” She concluded that “Then they (presumably the unwashed poverty-stricken women) would not need Planned Parenthood.” Last she added that the government should “crack down” on all the lazy boyfriends living with “welfare women.”
So, that, AG, is your counterpart. She voted for Corbett and Walker and Michelle Bachman and their ilk.


annagrace April 10, 2011 at 10:30 am

And I really love it when fetus loving men then complain that their own insurance premium rate is unfairly inflated by including coverage for childbirth….


Nancy April 10, 2011 at 5:52 pm

Great article and comments and love the video.

Had lunch with a friend on Friday who talked about her daughter having to go to
PP for care due to no health ins. for herself and family – husband and 2 kids, and he is working.

The attitude of “if I can take care of myself, than so can you.” really bugs me.
I would love to say to them “well, I hope you lose your job or your source of income and have to take a job paying 10.00 an hr.” I’d also like to say “I hope you never say to anyone that we live in a “christian” country” or “what would Jesus do?” if I knew they’re religious.

Interesting comment, annagrace, about some men complaining about childcare
costs inflating their medical rates; what about their prostate problems costs?


annagrace April 10, 2011 at 6:48 pm

Thanks Nancy. I bet viagra is a covered medicine as well as prostate exams. And I am still screaming and banging my head against the wall- “An Illinois judge has voided a law forcing druggists to sell morning-after emergency birth control.” Great news- “the health care profession does not have to check their conscience or religion at the door.” AAAARGH!


annagrace April 11, 2011 at 7:35 pm

This is what resistance looks like- the Mayor of D.C.and 40 other people, including City Council members were arrested today. They were protesting the policy riders that remain in the budget that was just passed to avoid a complete government shutdown. Those riders, which affect only D.C. are “a ban on federal funds being used to reimburse family planning, a ban on funds for the needle exchange program, and the return of the city’s school voucher program.”


Patty Jones April 11, 2011 at 9:37 pm

We saw this on the tube. I clapped. Right on Mr. Mayor!


Gobnait April 11, 2011 at 10:09 pm

I have written to my Senators suggesting a ban on federal funds used for foreign wars and adventurism – sounds pro-life to me? Which reminds me that many of the “pro life” fanatics support the death penalty as well as killing people abroad.


Gobnait April 14, 2011 at 4:25 am

Stephen Colbert says we can all go to Walgreens for our annual exams:
He said he personally prefers Walmart for his annual colonoscopy – he goes to the camera department…


annagrace April 14, 2011 at 8:13 am

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have set the record straight with Kyl & Fox in their inimitable style. Thanks for that link.


Annie April 21, 2011 at 9:13 pm

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: the government spends 60 percent of its funding on the military and people gripe about what is essentially the pocket change that goes into PP. I just don’t get it. The organization’s primary mission is education — not abortion or even birth control.

I just can’t believe that so many people are against basic sex education. I mean, 16-year-old girls are not getting pregnant because they’ve thought about it, are emotionally ready for the commitment and really want to. It’s because they haven’t learned how to protect themselves sexually. What the right-wing doesn’t seem to understand is that kids are having sex — period. (hee hee) As a result, they must be given access to educational tools, as well as materials that allow to plan their parenthood. Heaven forbid we as a society start doing that.

However, should the need arise for an abortion — and no one is to say what that need is for another person — the access to safe medical attention should always be available. Every child should be a wanted child.

I could go on forever ….


annagrace April 21, 2011 at 10:27 pm

Thank you for not losing sight of something important in this discussion – abortions are still constitutionally protected. A number of states have imposed draconian abortion laws which are without a doubt unconstitutional. There is concern among pro-choice groups that the current composition of the Supreme Court would probably result in Roe v Wade being overturned.

“The end result is that Roe remains on the books, while for all practical purposes women can’t get an abortion in Ohio, North Dakota, or Florida. I suppose you can call it half a loaf, but then, having half a loaf only really works if you are sort of pregnant. ”


Annie April 22, 2011 at 9:32 am

Great, great link.

A read I would recommend for anyone passionate about this topic is This Common Secret: My Journey as an Abortion Doctor by Susan Wicklund. She talks about, among other things, the hurdles that face women who choose to have an abortion, and the propaganda and fear tactics used by the right wing to stop women what is technically one of the safest and least invasive among surgical procedures.

It’ll be interesting to see what happens. The saddest part is that Roe v. Wade and the protection of Planned Parenthood could be such an easy victory if women everywhere united. As Wicklund says, the number of women (of all different social, political and religious backgrounds) who have had an abortion is big enough to make it a common secret — and that has nothing to do with PP. And never mind counting the number of women who use some form of birth control. It’s quite silly that the debate for support is ongoing.


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