Friday, November 11, 2011

Deconstructing the Planned Parenthood Myth

At a recent Houston gala, numerous well-known Texans gathered to pay tribute to Peter J. Durkin, retiring CEO of Planned Parenthood-Gulf Coast. The City of Houston declared a “Peter J. Durkin Day,” and Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee called Durkin a “true American Hero.” What was not mentioned is that Durkin's Planned Parenthood is in very deep trouble.

For starters, PPGC and Peter Durkin himself are under investigation for massive Medicaid fraud. Former employee Karen Reynolds has filed a complaint with the Texas Attorney General and the U.S. Department of Justice alleging that the organization systematically falsified medical charts for abortion clients to make it appear as if these clients came in for other services. Included in the complaint are memos instructing employees on how to falsify records in order to obtain Medicaid reimbursements.

But this allegation is only the latest in a series of revelations that are shattering the mythology surrounding Planned Parenthood. In addition to Medicaid fraud, the organization is also under investigation for enabling sex trafficking of girls as young as 14. Although Americans have seen the organization as a “friend to women,” they are slowly discovering the ugly truth.

Originally founded as a birth control clinic, Planned Parenthood has been portrayed as an advocate for women's health. The organization proudly touts founder Margaret Sanger's work to legalize birth control, but carefully sidesteps Sanger's documented speaking engagements with the Ku Klux Klan and her many articles promoting eugenics. Her writings indicate that Sanger was an angry and resentful woman who loathed large families and the “human weeds” of the “lesser races.” Sanger would be pleased to know that about half of all African American pregnancies now end in abortion.

Marketing the organization as a 'healthcare' provider has been highly successful; corporations and charities have funneled billions of dollars into Planned Parenthood coffers. In addition to massive taxpayer-funded subsidies from all levels of government, groups such as the Susan G. Komen Foundation, United Way, and the March of Dimes have donated millions to Planned Parenthood for 'healthcare,' often under the guise of fighting breast cancer. Never mind that this 'non-profit' reports anywhere from $62 million to $114 million in annual profits.

While Planned Parenthood claims most services are non-abortion health care, former PPGC Employee of the Year Abby Johnson, has described how the organization manipulates reporting data to mislead donors. If a client receives a prescription for birth control pills, PP reports 12 'healthcare' services, one for each month of the year. Abortion services, even those requiring multiple visits, are counted as only one 'service.' Planned Parenthood's health care statistics are largely the result of accounting gimmicks.

Furthermore, despite receiving millions for breast cancer prevention, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services, not a single Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas even has equipment or licensing for mammograms. And as for the highly touted doctor-patient relationship, the only occasion in which doctors have any contact with patients at PP clinics is during an abortion procedure. If a client needs a medical doctor for anything else, she is then referred to a real women's health care clinic.

None of this, not even the alleged complicity in sexually exploiting minor girls, should come as any surprise. For both individuals and organizations, foundations matter. Furthermore, one cannot compartmentalize just one 'unethical act' without corrupting the whole. Despite the 'compassionate' arguments for abortion, the bottom line is that a human being is killed in the process, and all the pseudo-ethical and intellectual contortions in the world cannot make it otherwise. The myth is shattered; these are not our 'friends.' Planned Parenthood is and always has been a wolf in sheep's clothing, and it is time to bring Margaret Sanger's twisted legacy to an end.

Note:  This is a column I wrote for the Hill Country News.  One reader has suggested that I've never been inside a Planned Parenthood Clinic and so I don't have any credibility.  Well, I have been inside a Planned Parenthood clinic- as a patient.  It was a soul-less place I won't forget. 

Another aspect I did not mention in my previous column is that Planned Parenthood is not concerned with whether or not patients are being coerced or forced into an abortion. 

From Dr. Allen Unruh:  "
Unruh, who studied abortion for a state task force in 2005, said that Planned Parenthood maintains willful ignorance about the majority of women who have abortions against their will.
The threats often come from a boyfriend, husband, parent or other party.
“The task force revealed it was 65%,” Unruh told CNA in a May 31 interview. “Planned Parenthood admitted under oath that they don’t have anybody who has any training, of any kind, in counseling to determine when a woman’s being coerced.”

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