Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Did Pro-life activists finally take it too far?

By Noelle Tedford

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. -- Planned Parenthood has been accused of selling baby fetuses for profit. Although these accusations have been proven false the topic is still creating a lot of controversy throughout our nation.
            In July 2015 the Center for Medical Progress, an anti-abortion and Pro-life organization, leaked a video of Deborah Nucatola, Planned Parenthood’s senior director of medical services, it featured Nucatola discussing the harvesting of tissues and organs of aborted fetuses. The video was a sting in which CMP posed as a medical research organization looking for fetuses. The video was later found to be highly edited with many things taken out of context.
            Following the video leak, Cecile Richards, Planned Parenthood’s president, spoke to the House Committee on Oversight and Government reform. Although the video was tampered with, Richard’s did apologize for the overall tone of the video.
            Katie Gibbons, a former Planned Parenthood employee said, “I did not feel that Richard’s should have apologized for a highly edited clip. She did nothing wrong and that is what people need to realize.”
            During the meeting given to the House Committee, Richards was “spoken over and berated with questions,” said Karen Case. Case is the OBGYN at Planned Parenthood and a Midwife at CVPH Medical Center and has been with both organizations for five years.
            Case said, “I felt Richard’s presented herself and Planned Parenthood in a very dignified light. She wasn’t able to get her point across because of the rapid-fire questioning they were throwing at her.”
            A huge issue that is being brought up with all of this talk of fetuses is government funding. Pro-life groups are using this story to bend facts and manipulate public opinion.
            Case admits, “People are always trying to breach the system. In order to even access my computer I have to go through at least five passwords.”
            These system breaches can include anything from people calling the receptionist to give faulty information to people making fake appointments and trying to trap workers outside protocol.
            With Pro-life advocates comes the protesters. Each day from about 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. picketers can be seen outside of the local Planned Parenthood. Generally, the group consists of two elder gentlemen and an elderly nun. This poses the problem that people might not realize: not everyone who goes to Planned Parenthood is getting an abortion!
            Robin Marie, Planned Parenthood employee said, “I have never been harassed but I stood outside in support one day. The protesters were yelling things implying that we were all lesbians and that we live in condos with all the money we get from abortions.”
            The protesters are known to give dirty looks to incoming patients as well as forcefully handing out antiabortion pamphlets.
            The fact that no government funding is even used towards abortion shows how little these antiabortionist groups really know about the Planned Parenthood organization. Pro-choice isn’t just a phrase about the woman’s choice to keep her baby or not. It goes so much deeper than that. The whole picture of Pro-choice is about preventive measures as well. In fact, abortion is the lower than any other test or procedure at Planned Parenthood.
            Chris LaRose, a local male youth said, “I don’t know why people address Planned Parenthood as just a woman’s service. Clearly men use the organization as well for things such as testing and family planning.”
            So what is government funding used for at Planned Parenthood? It is used for things such as mammograms, pap smears, STD/STI testing and prevention. These things are very important to the health of adults and Pro-choice advocates. Pro-life has a powerful message but Pro-choice lets a woman choose what is right for her. After all it is her body to do as she pleases.
            Susan Kier-merrihew, OBGYN at Planned Parenthood said, “Pro-choice means you have the right to choose whether you will be a mother or not. Birth control is also Pro-choice and is the safest preventive measure, aside from abstinence. What a woman does with her body is a personal choice and it is nobody’s business what that choice is.”

            There will always be people on both sides of the Pro-choice and Pro-life conflicts. However, fabricating and falsifying information to damage an organization that looks out for the over-all health of its community is not morally correct. Should a group so close to God be more understanding of the God-given right to choose?

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