Thursday, September 17, 2015

I Stand with Planned Parenthood

From the time I was a very, very little girl—from as far back as I can remember, actually—my mom would always joke (yet she was serious) that, if she had ten minutes to live, “I would tack the phone number for Planned Parenthood next to the phone for you girls, and then I’d eat hamburgers until I died.” From the time I was tiny, I was taught how important what Planned Parenthood does is. What do they do? They provide birth control. They prevent unwanted pregnancies and children coming into this world when their parents are not ready for them. They empower girls and women to have choices in life. They provide affordable health care. They provide counseling. And yes, they do provide abortion services but that is only 3% of what they do. It’s the other 98% that is so important. It’s the other 98% that prevents more abortions than they will ever, ever do, and more than probably any other organization or entity in the world. They are about what their name is: planned parenthood. Not accidental parenthood—planned, wanted, welcomed, rejoiced-in parenthood. That is the way children should come into this world: when they are wanted, when their parents are ready for them and can afford to take care of them.

Now along come some divisive, patriarchy-supporting, rich MEN and they are convincing everyone that Planned Parenthood is bad, Planned Parenthood is evil. Why? How are they evil? They are not “selling baby parts”, that is utter despicable propaganda, designed to stop this fine organization from helping women. Because make no mistake about it, people: as unfathomable as this may sound/seem in 2015, these men want us barefoot and pregnant. Which sounds pretty good to me right now, actually, although I’m way too old but anyway it should be up to the person if she wants to be barefoot and/or pregnant, not up to some hateful, violent people who want to shut down Planned Parenthood.

They don’t give a hoot about stopping abortion, they want to stop BIRTH CONTROL. Birth control and affordable health care, that is what Planned Parenthood is about, that is what they have been doing since before I was born, that is what I was taught as a tiny girl I should REVERE about them and always know and always keep that phone number “tacked by the phone.”

And when I got old enough to need birth control, I was so blessed to have a parent whom I could pick up the phone and turn to, and actually a college health center I could go to. But if that amazing little health center hadn’t been there, do you know where I would have gone? PLANNED PARENTHOOD. Because I’d been taught. Because I knew. Because I had it told to me again and again even as a tiny child: Planned Parenthood is there for you when you need them. Be sure to know their name. Be sure to keep their phone number tacked by the phone.

I stand with Planned Parenthood!