InDepth: Abortion and Planned Parenthood

Founding of Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood celebrated 100 years in 2016, being founded in 1916 by Margaret Sanger, Ethel Byrne, and Fania Mindell. This group of activists founded the first Planned Parenthood clinic, which focused on passing out birth control to women. They went on to grow this organization from the American Birth Control League to Planned Parenthood. Although Planned Parenthood only started performing abortions in 1970, Margaret Sanger is still looked at as the mother of abortion.

Sanger was also very active in politics. In her early life as a mother, Sanger was apart of the Women’s Committee of the New York Socialist Party. She was also very good at being a provocateur, writing in the local newspapers talking about contraception, motherhood, and sex. You have to remember that early 1900’s public life was very different than it is today. Women’s rights were nowhere near what they are today. She seemed to have drifted away from the radical politics that she grew up on after WW1, which is when she founded the American Birth Control League.

Thoughts on Eugenics

The one section of Sanger’s life that her staunchest supporters shy away from is her view on eugenics. Sanger was just as powerful of a figure in the eugenics movement as she was in the birth control movement. Although labeling Sanger a racist seems to be somewhat of a stretch among most historians, it is clear that she certainly entertained the racist faction of the population.

One of these examples is the acceptance of giving a speech at the women’s chapter of the KKK in 1926. This certainly does not paint her as a racist automatically, but it is certainly questionable as to why she would give a speech at this rally if indeed she was staunchly opposed to racism.

Her radical policy ideas about sterilization are certainly frightening. As it is certainly a common idea to wait to have children until you are ready, there is still a large portion of the population that does not. Most sane individuals would not call for mass sterilization as Sanger did when it came to the “misinformed” or “unintelligent” demographic.

Here is one of Sanger’s most astonishing quotes on the basis of eugenics:

“The main objects of the Population Congress would be to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring[;] to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization.” (“A Plan for Peace,” 1932).

When is a Child ‘Just a Sack of Cells’?

The interesting argument when it comes to abortion is when life starts. Although it is obvious to myself that life starts at conception, other people have a wide variety of their view on life. The astonishing argument is that life begins at birth, that the child is still a ‘fetus’ until the mother gives birth. For example, weeks 1-5 the child is basically just a “sack of cells” for a lack of a better term. The difference between this sack of cells and another is that these cells are the building blocks for life. Each cell plays a vital roll in the forming of the child in the womb.

Lets move on from the first 5 weeks of pregnancy. By week 6 the child is already forming their mouth, ears, and nose. Although no heartbeat is found, it is still apparent that a child is forming the first parts of their head.

Weeks 7-10 are very vital to the healthy formation of the child. These are the weeks in which the bodily organs are being formed at the most basic level. By the end of the first trimester the child has formed fingerprints.

By week 16 the child is already pumping up to 25 quarts of blood. This statistic is very vital among political realms as the heartbeat bill is something the left and right are finding common ground on.

 Abortion Statistics

On www.cdc.gov, it it stated that,

In 2013, 664,435 legal induced abortions were reported to CDC from 49 reporting areas. The abortion rate for 2013 was 12.5 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years, and the abortion ratio was 200 abortions per 1,000 live births.

Women in their twenties accounted for the majority of abortions in 2013 and throughout the period of analysis. The majority of abortions in 2013 took place early in gestation: 91.6% of abortions were performed at ≤13 weeks’ gestation; a smaller number of abortions (7.1%) were performed at 14–20 weeks’ gestation, and even fewer (1.3%) were performed at ≥21 weeks’ gestation. In 2013, 22.2% of all abortions were early medical abortions.

Just to give you an idea of what a child after 21 weeks looks like, studies have shown that they can actually survive outside of the womb. If a child has a chance to survive outside of the womb after 21 weeks, is it still considered ‘women’s choice’, or is it considered murder? Here is an excerpt from an article at www.newsweek.com:

The study, published in The New England Journal of Medicine on Thursday, looked at nearly 5,000 babies born before 27 weeks of gestation. It found that a significant number of babies who were born at 22 weeks, just over five months of gestation, survived after being medically treated in a hospital. Previously, 22 weeks was considered too early to resuscitate a baby because survival rates were so low.

Repercussions of Pro-Choice on all Levels

Dr. Gosnell

Dr. Kermit Gosnell was a doctor in west Philadelphia who ran an abortion clinic from 1979 to 2010.

The true disgust and horror of this evil doctor seems to be never ending on the lengths he went to to murder. It was stated by eyewitness accounts that there was urine and blood spattered on the walls of the procedure rooms and that the procedure tables and tools were old and worn out.

An excerpt from www.washingtonpost.com:

Pennsylvania law bars abortions after 24 weeks’ gestation, at which point a fetus is considered to be likely viable outside the womb. Gosnell performed multiple abortions at 24.5 weeks, and the grand jury report found that many of those procedures underestimated the period of gestation. One Gosnell employee estimated that about 40 percent of the clinic’s abortions occurred after 24 weeks. Gosnell, the grand jury found, killed the babies born alive in his clinic.

“Gosnell had a simple solution for the unwanted babies he delivered: he killed them,” the report said. “He didn’t call it that. He called it ‘ensuring fetal demise.’ The way he ensured fetal demise was by sticking scissors into the back of the baby’s neck and cutting the spinal cord.”

Aren’t there inspections and inspection reports at such clinics? How did he continuously get away with such evil acts?

In the early years, documentation shows that the clinic had been investigated multiple times and no concrete result ever came out of them. There was even a 16 year stretch of no investigations of the abortion clinic. There was even a refugee woman that died during a procedure in 2009, which did not even trigger an investigation.

One of the most troubling cases of his late-term abortions was a child that was 29 weeks old. I remember that one of the nurses in the clinic testified that she had taken a picture of the child after the abortion because she was so surprised that he was so large. She even stated that she took the picture of the child because she thought that he would have had a chance if he would have been born instead of killed.

The number of evil acts from just this one clinic is utterly astonishing. What may be even more astonishing, however, is that he colluded with a number of employees at this clinic. Although he was the doctor in charge of all of these procedures, I find it rather troubling that no employee came out about these actions when the clinic was running. If abortion is going to stay legalized, more regulations have to come down so these things do not happen.

Selling of Body Parts

There were twelve undercover videos that showed Planned Parenthood representatives selling off body parts from aborted babies. Their conversations seemed to have stated that they perform abortions a certain way so the tissue and body parts are not harmed in the process, thus allowing for sale after the killing. Representatives on the buying end seem to even get bonuses for certain things that they purchase in good condition.

In the eleventh video, a Planned Parenthood employee is shown selling baby heads after the procedure for research. This evil act is heightened in the twelfth video as a medical director is shown stating that they perform abortions against procedure so they can sell the intact head to for-profit medical research facilities.

Summary: Is There Common Ground Between Pro-Life and Pro-Choice?

Both sides have seemed to dig in their heels when it comes to Planned Parenthood funding and the rights of the unborn. The pro-life side of the argument argues for no abortions to be committed. The pro-choice crowd wants abortions seemingly anytime the mother chooses.

One of the most notorious views on abortion from a Republican Governor is Scott Walker. Governor Walker has seemingly stayed away from abortion bans at certain weeks, but did pass into law in Wisconsin that the women had to see an ultrasound before performing the abortion and the clinic had to be within 30 miles of a hospital just in case.

Governor Walker does in fact side with the idea of eliminating governmental funding for abortions in Planned Parenthood facilities. This side of the pro-life argument is an interesting one that may prove to bridge the gap between the two sides. As I am a pro-life advocate, I am also aware that there will never be a day in this country where abortions at all levels are completely eradicated. The ultrasound law may prove to be what we need to be satisfied in this argument.

There is no doubt an evil presence in the realm of abortion. Clinics like Gosnell’s are only a product of the laws in place legalizing abortions. Lawless and moral less doctors rule these clinics in a pursuit for lucrative cash flow. With regulations in place, it is evident that these clinics and Planned Parenthood still find ways around them to sell off the body parts. When will the evils of abortion be eliminated?

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