Thursday marks Lobby Day on Capitol Hill for Planned Parenthood. If you’ve been on Capitol Hill lately, you may wonder how that makes it different from any other day recently, where “Will you stand with Planned Parenthood?” has replaced “What do you do?” — and the business-card exchange outside bars and offices has been replaced with petitions ready for your signature.
Ever since Lila Rose’s Live Action released videos showing Planned Parenthood officials’ willingness to aid and abet illegal activity — namely, sex trafficking — the nearly billion-dollar organization has been working overtime to protect its “brand.”
Brand is in quotes because it’s a quote from Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards (daughter of the late former Texas governor Ann Richards). She told Politico last month that “going after the strongest brand in women’s health in America is one of the stupidest things the Republican Party could have done.”
Stupid? Or effective? As defunding Planned Parenthood has become a rallying cry of not just pro-life activists but fiscal conservatives like Grover Norquist, its pretty-in-pink media and bipartisanly protected spin as a beacon of “women’s health” is coming undone.
For decades, pro-life activists have been on to Planned Parenthood, its eugenic roots
, and its abortion business, but finally, its well-protected spin has been penetrated. Its untouchable status as a beacon for women’s health has been revealed to be but a pink cloak covering a darker underbelly.
They rally for “women’s health” on the Hill Thursday — but under a cloud of increasing questions and skepticism about their mission. And even more fundamentally for members of Congress and the American taxpayer: about why they are receiving federal funding.
You may have met Abby Johnson by now. She’s the former Planned Parenthood director who figured out how Planned Parenthood works and left — and now stars in TV and radio ads in the Washington, D.C., area courtesy of the Susan B. Anthony List and other groups. Her journey reflects, a bit, the politics of the moment.
Johnson, who first got involved with Planned Parenthood after an encounter at a volunteer fair, bought the “women’s health” talking points. But that positive image conceals the organization’s real business: abortion, as she would eventually see and reveal. It’s how they make their money and it’s where the lifestyles they encourage all too easily lead.
Johnson, who writes about her journey in her book, Unplanned (which she talks about at length here), began to realize these things after her own second abortion. She began to connect the dots, as she saw so many women come to her clinic for multiple abortions, despite using contraception (it’s not foolproof, contrary to the message we’re so often told to give kids). She began to realize that, as she — a clinic director — was given increased abortion goals.
So much for the “rare,” in Bill Clinton’s infamous “safe, legal, and rare.”