Saturday, February 19, 2011

SAVE Planned Parenthood!

Don't let women's health care rights become merely a privilege of the wealthy simply because a bunch of male Republicans want to impose their out-of-date values on this country.

I was among the thousands, if not millions, of horrified citizens when the Republican led House of Representatives voted to end federal funding to Planned Parenthood yesterday. I try very hard to remain politically neutral on this blog, but not on this issue.

The measure now moves to the Senate, which will ultimately decide the funding fate of this vital family service organization. Thus, it's time to make your voice heard, and reach out to each and every Senator from your state and tell them just how vital it is to maintain funding levels, and that you will remember in November if they vote this funding down!

Planned Parenthood MUST retain its federal funding.

This organization provides health care services to needy women and children. Less than 5 percent of its budget goes to reproductive choices, and NO federal money is used to perform abortions NOW! [See above graphic.]

I have included important information below, the first a letter of appeal from Planned Parenthood, the second a fabulous posting by the non-profit Woodhull Freedom Foundation. I wish I had written Woodhull's post, but since I didn't, I am including it below in its entirety.

Here is the information from Planned Parenthood:

"We've never faced an attack like this in our 95-year history — and we've never needed your support like we do right now. Thank you for standing with us.

We have to raise a massive outcry against this dangerous attack on women's health and Planned Parenthood. Please, tell everyone you know to stand with us today.

Did you hear? The House voted to bar Planned Parenthood from federal funding. They cut funding for HIV tests, cancer screenings, birth control, and more, putting millions of women and families at risk. We can't let it go unanswered. It's time for you and me to stand with Planned Parenthood. Sign the open letter to the reps who voted for this bill — and to the senators who still have a chance to stop it.

This fight will continue as our legislators return to their home districts, and when legislation to bar Planned Parenthood from federal funding heads to the U.S. Senate. Your voice, your strength, and your unwavering support are absolutely critical, now and in the weeks ahead. Thank you so much for standing with us.

Ready to do more?

Help us fight back against ongoing attacks and set the record straight by sharing your story about how Planned Parenthood has been there for you, your family, or your friends. Telling the truth about Planned Parenthood and those we serve is critical to stopping this truly dangerous legislation. Click here.

These attacks on Planned Parenthood are a drain on our resources at a time when we have to work harder than ever to protect and promote women's health. Please consider making a gift to Planned Parenthood Federation of America to help us through this difficult time."

Now, please read this incredible blog posting from Woodhull below, or directly at its website:

War Against Women in Our Own Country
Posted on February 19, 2011 by rlevy

"It’s an inquisition as virulent as any Inquisition. It’s a holocaust with women and children as the targets.

It’s a fear-driven, rhetoric-inspired hysteria.

It’s a war.

It’s a war of words, not guns. And the victims are women and children. The “guns,” the weapons, are the gradual diminishing of our human rights.

We had warnings. We knew the attacks would be coming. In fact, we were promised that our rights would be stripped away if we put certain people in power. Well, we did. They are. And they are fulfilling their promises.

We are at war and we have to figure out what we’re going to do about it.

The latest salvo was yesterday when the House adopted an amendment to the continuing resolution, or C.R., offered by anti-choice Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) that would eliminate funding for preventative-health services, including contraception and cancer screenings, at Planned Parenthood clinics across the country. The House is expected to pass the overall budget measure, which will then move to the Senate.

Note that I said “latest.” This isn’t the first attack against our fundamental human right and it won’t be the last. H.R.3 and H.R.358 are two bills that have sparked intense controversy. Lawmakers finally had to cave to public pressure and remove a provision in both bills that tried to redefine rape, but now a new version of H.R.358 includes a measure that would allow hospitals to refuse to provide abortion care to women who will die without it.

Nancy Keenan, President of NARAL, said that if passed, both H.R.3 and H.R.358 would interfere in women’s personal, private decisions in unprecedented ways. H.R.3, authored by Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), would effectively block private-insurance plans from covering abortion care in the new health-care system and impose tax penalties on individuals and small businesses that purchase plans that include abortion coverage. Currently, 87 percent of private plans include such coverage.

Just last week a bill in South Dakota would have made it “legal” to murder an abortion provider.

We are a country in the midst of a financial depression. We are a country where millions of people have lost jobs and are unemployed. Shouldn’t those be the priorities Congress is facing? Instead the newly elected Senators and Representatives are manically focused on removing a woman’s right to choose.

Even allowing for editing of the tapes from Planned Parenthood, and imagining how many offices the undercover folks had to go into to get material for their expose, some of what the folks in PP said was wrong. And PP has addressed those individuals and those practices immediately. Did we close down the banks or AIG because someone, some individuals in those corporations screwed up? Well, as a matter of fact we actually increased our support of them and handed them lots and lots of money to fix their “business.”

Why is it so different with an organization that only does good? Why is it a different set of rules for an organization that serves millions of women every year, providing counseling, cancer screenings, testing? I can tell you why. Because it’s convenient for the “right” for the anti-choice war mongers who characterized the issue as one of abortion when that was never the real issue. It’s a weapon the “right” can re-package and use very effectively to strip away our human right to sexual freedom.


All Pence did was remove health care from women.

The real issue is that Planned Parenthood is an abortion provider. Less than 10 percent of the organization’s services are in providing abortions.

The $317 million that the House eliminated, known as Title X, provides women access to contraceptives and family planning services who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford them. No matter your political affiliation, these services should be considered vital.

So what can you do about it? Fortunately, it’s unlikely the amendment will pass in the Senate. In the meantime, hop on over to the Planned Parenthood website and SIGN THIS LETTER, directed toward representatives who signed the bill and senators who can still stop it from passing.

And, if you haven’t been, start paying really close attention to your fundamental human rights and what those elected officials in Congress and at the state level are doing to violate them."

I, too am adding my voice to those who will be reaching out to Congress. I cannot stress how important it is for every citizen, regardless or gender or age, to reach out and make your views known. Don't assume there are enough callers or writers on this issue. Do it for your family, for all families, for the health and welfare of everyone who lives in the U.S.!

— The Curator

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