The Iowa Caucus has come and gone. All of the debates, town hall meetings and news coverage have finally reached the moment it has been leading up toward. If you are a political junkie like me, then you probably have noticed several themes that have run through almost all the debates, like gun control, immigration and the Islamic State. Well, I am going to hop up onto my proverbial soap box and take on something that has been badgering me since the very first debate: Planned Parenthood.
I do not align myself with any party, mostly because I have noticed that my views are scattered across the political spectrum. But I do believe very passionately that Planned Parenthood should continue to operate.
Planned Parenthood, for those who do not know, is a women’s health organization that provides relatively inexpensive and professional care for women. Because it is less expensive and accepts most insurance providers, Planned Parenthood tends to pop up in more impoverished areas simply because there is a need for cheap health care.
The controversy surrounding Planned Parenthood comes from the fact that they also happen to provide abortions. Here is where I am going to get a little preachy, so if you don’t want to hear it, I suggest you stop here.
Out of all of the people that come into Planned Parenthood, only three percent are getting abortions according to a 2014 study.
Three percent. That’s it.
Do you know what the other 97 percent of women are getting? STD tests, birth control, pap smears, breast exams and prenatal care, all by a caring, experienced medical professional.
The protesters lining up outside of Planned Parenthoods across America are protesting what only one in every 33 women are going in there to do. These people are screaming at more women going in to get checked for breast cancer than they are women getting abortions.
And if a woman is choosing to have an abortion (which is her legal right), she is having it done by a professional with a medical background who will provide her with a safe, caring space free of judgment.
As for the highly edited videos that you may have heard about, a court in Texas not only cleared Planned Parenthood in the alleged tissue sales, but it also indicted the two individuals who made the videos, according to The Associated Press. So a court of law, in the highly conservative Texas nonetheless, sided with Planned Parenthood.
After reading stories of women who have had abortions, it is obvious to me that deciding to have an abortion is a long and emotionally taxing decision, but a decision that is ultimately up to the woman. And should she choose to abort, she should be able to have one in a medical building with a professional attending to her.
The only thing that Planned Parenthood is guilty of is providing low-cost care to women in need. They are not guilty of selling fetal tissue; they are not guilty of providing illegal abortions; they are not guilty of anything. They are simply giving women the caring, professional treatment they need in order to live healthy and happy lives.