Tag Archives: abortion

Why Planned Parenthood is NOT for Women’s Health

As a twenty-something American women who is highly in favor of the defunding of Planned Parenthood, the biggest opposition I hear is that by taking funds from Planned Parenthood, we are hindering women’s rights and limiting the healthcare options that women have available to them. Many people say that, if not for Planned Parenthood, they would have nowhere else to go for basic reproductive healthcare. The simple fact is that this is not true.

Since the Affordable Care Act has been signed into place, it is required by law for all Americans to have health insurance. Furthermore, all health insurance providers are required to provide basic reproductive services (including a yearly exam, mammogram, and pap smear) free of charge. These services are offered at any OBGYN office.

What about people who do not have insurance? Funnily enough, the same people who use this argument are traditionally staunch advocates of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, which fines those who do not have healthcare. So to these people I ask, where do you truly stand? Is insurance required at the risk of paying a penalty? If so, then why the need for Planned Parenthood? And if the Affordable Care Act does not supply insurance as it should, leaving women without healthcare options, then how can you fail to see the glaring lack of practical application of the ACA?

Setting that aside, there are numerous organizations which provide healthcare to those who do not have insurance. In August of 2015, the Charlotte Lozier Institute produced a map listing over 13,000 non-abortive healthcare facilities in the United Stated compared to only 665 Planned Parenthood locations.  Clearly, there are many alternatives to seeking true healthcare without the need for Planned Parenthood.

So what does Planned Parenthood offer that cannot be obtained elsewhere? Not anything to help advance women’s healthcare, I can tell you that. Planned Parenthood provides contraception. And Planned Parenthood provides abortions. Oh and about those contraceptives? Let’s go back to that lovely Affordable Care Act once more. The ACA requires contraception to be provided free of charge. So why exactly is Planned Parenthood necessary? What is it that women are getting at Planned Parenthood that they cannot get elsewhere, aside from abortion?

Why should our federal tax money be supporting this organization which places such a strong emphasis on contraception and abortion when the actual healthcare needs of women can be met in so many other locations? If we’re going to spend the money on healthcare, why not put it towards facilities that do not offer abortions? Why not use it to help provide better healthcare to our veterans? Or to children battling cancer? There are so many better uses for this money.

To convince society that all women will have sex promiscuously and need the contraceptives and STD testing Planned Parenthood provides is insulting to women. We are more than mindless sex machines who cannot stop ourselves from giving into bodily pleasures. And our young women need to be taught that they are worth so much more than a one night stand. Instead of throwing our hands up and saying, “It is what it is. They’re going to have sex. Let’s make sure they do so safely”, why not fight back? Sexual promiscuity does not have to be the norm.  And America’s young women deserve to know that.

Life is to be protected at ALL stages.  To spread the lie that a child within the womb is not a baby is truly evil. To tell women that it is just a blob of tissue that can be easily disposed of and then turn around to “harvest” what, in truth, is very valuable tissue, the tissue of a living baby…well this is a bold faced lie that the devil himself couldn’t be more pleased with.

I don’t care if it makes me “old-fashioned”. I don’t care if you think I need to “get with the times.” Truth does not change with time. And the truth is that life, ALL life, is created by God. It is not ours to dispose of as we so choose.

As the United States election creeps closer and closer, please pray for God’s guidance in electing our next President. Please pray for those who fight for life.  Please pray for those who feel they have no other choice than abortion.  Pray for those in the abortion industry and those who support Planned Parenthood, that their eyes and hearts may be opened.  Pray for America.  Pray for life.

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To Be a Superhero

superhero-296963__180My neighborhood holds trick-or treat on a weekend afternoon and so we had children coming around this past weekend dressed as all sorts of characters in search of free candy.  There were a few truly unique costumes, a few of the teenager-in-a-hoody-and-mask variety, and several little princesses.  But the majority of the costumes were superheroes.  Girls and boys alike showed up as Captain America, Superman, Spiderman, Batman, and Ironman.  It’s not surprising given our culture’s fascination with superheroes.  Superheros dominate the movie box offices, they fill the toy shelves in stores, they are on T-shirts, backpacks, lunchboxes, socks, shoes, pencils, notebooks…you name it.

My husband is a big fan of the superhero movie genre.  In all honesty I had hardly a clue about any of them until I met him.  Now I see just about every superhero movie that comes out.  At first it was just to be polite and accompany my husband.  But now I truly enjoy many of them.  Some are a bit too dark for my taste, but the overall idea of these movies appeals to me more and more.

What is it that draws the masses to see these movies?  What is it about these stories, these characters, that crosses the lines of race, religion, politics, and economics to appeal to virtually everyone?

When it comes down to it, we all need a hero.  The world is full of chaos, uncertainty, fear.  We love to see the nerdy boy from high school discover his superpowers and embark on a journey to save the world.  We love to see the most dire of situations be instantly turned around by the rag-tag group of misfits who have come together to use their powers for the greater good. They come together to fight injustice and to fight for  freedom.  They fight to protect the most innocent and vulnerable.  They fight for life.

While these superheroes are amazing to watch in the movies, at some point we have to come back down to reality. The movie is finished and real life beckons.  Of course, there are heroes in real life too.

Firefighters who rescue people from burning buildings are heroes.  Soldiers who risk their lives to protect nations and freedom are heroes.  Doctors and nurses who travel to Africa to care for those suffering from Ebola are heroes.

But now, despite our fascination with the life-saving superheroes, it seems a hero here in the real world is defined as something all together different.  Now it seems the title “hero” is bestowed not upon those who vow to protect and preserve life, but rather the opposite.

In June of 2013 Wendy Davis performed a filibuster for 11 hours to prevent a vote on a measure that would halt abortions after 20 weeks, require abortion clinics to meet the same surgical standards as hospitals, and require doctors performing abortions to have admitting rights at a hospital.  She was hailed as a champion for women’s rights.  A “hero”.

In May of this year, 25 year old Emily Letts decided to have an abortion and  to film it.  She wanted to show that it’s not scary, that there should be no guilt, that it’s ok to have an abortion.  She was called a “hero”.

Now Brittany Maynard, a 29 year old battling terminal brain cancer has chosen to end her own life this weekend. This beautiful woman has decided that to spare both herself and her family from the inevitable suffering that would ultimately lead to death anyway, she is going to die on her own terms.  She has made popular in the media the so called right to die with dignity.  And for her decision, she has been called a “hero.”

Every time I read one of these stories, my heart aches.  Aches for those who fight for abortion in the name of women’s health and protecting our rights.  Aches for those who truly believe that there is nothing wrong with an abortion.  Aches for those who, when faced with immeasurable sufferings, feel the only option is to die.

My heart aches for what we have reduced life to.  Something that we have control over.  Or at least we think we do.  We have reduced life to something we can create in test tubes, monitor for signs of “imperfection” and dispose of when we find things that are too tough to deal with.  To something that comes secondary to our own desires and goals.  We have reduced life to something that, when it gets too tough to bear, can be stopped.

Life is more than that.  There is beauty in life, even in the darkest of moments. Beauty because each life is precious and created by our loving Father. To look for the beauty, to find it even when others cannot see it, that is what makes a hero.  To look past the pain and suffering and see a glimmer of joy.  I believe that there are heroes all around us.  Heroes who battle cancer to the very end. Who suffer, yes, but who also find the beauty within the pain.  Heroes who, scared and unprepared though they may be, decide to give birth to a beautiful little baby.  To give them life.  Heroes who, like the superheroes we so admire, fight for life.

Life is hard.  It is messy, it is pain-filled, it is confusing.  But it is also beautiful.  There are times we do not know what is going to happen next.  There are times when we do and we dread what the future has to hold.  In the midst of life’s trials, whatever they may be, I think we all have the chance to be a hero.  Maybe even a superhero.  baby-203048_640

 

For Life

Today I came across a story about a 25 year old abortion counselor who filmed her own abortion procedure in order to show others that apparently, this is a good thing.  In the article she talks about how great she feels about the decision.  She likens it to giving birth and said she feels no remorse, no guilt at all.  She had gotten pregnant accidentally and decided she wasn’t ready to have children yet.  I read this story and wanted to just cry.

My heart aches for this woman and my prayers go out to her and the numerous women like her who have been deceived into believing the lie that is abortion.  The millions of people who have bought the devil’s tales of how killing babies is a good thing.

Just last week there was a news story about a pit-bull that mauled a young boy.  Animal rights activists rallied to the dog’s defense saying that it was the owner’s fault, not the dog.  They won and the dog was “sentenced” to life in prison rather than being put down.  What does it say about our society that we will rally and fight to protect the life of a dog who mauled a little boy because it was not his fault, and at the same time will kill millions of unborn precious babies, despite the fact that they haven’t done a single thing wrong?

Every life is precious.  From the moment of conception to natural death.  The devil may try to make us feel silly for believing this.  He might work to make us feel like we are old-fashioned or behind the times.  But we cannot believe his lies.  Together we must take a stand for life.  I pray for all the women who are facing this decision, that their hearts be open to life!  I pray for the women who have had an abortion, that they find healing and forgiveness.  I pray for those in power in our society, that they might take a stand for life.  And I pray for all the precious little babies who never had a chance to live here on earth, that surrounded by God’s glory in Heaven, they are filled with a love and joy beyond our comprehension.

Unable to Un-Read

The human mind is a tricky thing. There are things I learned and read in junior high and high school that I have almost completely forgotten. Things learned in classes like biology or chemistry or even history. There dates and quotes I memorized for exams throughout college that, if you asked me now, I might only have a faint recollection of what they referred to and may have completely forgotten. At the same time, there are some things you just cannot forget. Certain events, movies, and images stick with you. Some of these things we want to remember! Childhood events, birthday parties, family gatherings, weddings, and so on. But there are some things you cannot erase from your mind, even if you want to.

The recent trials of Gosnell are in that latter category. I began to read the news on him awhile back and had to stop halfway through the article. I just couldn’t bear it anymore. I know abortions happen. I know this is not an isolated incident. But the graphic nature of these trials tore at my heart. What boggles my mind is that there are people who will sit disgusted at what this man did, and yet will still say abortion is fine and we should provide safer and more easily accessible options for it. Somehow since the baby was out of the womb, it was horrendous. But when this happens within the womb in a “proper” facility, these people seem to find no wrong.

I want so badly to be a mother and am praying for God’s peace as I wait for Him to decide it is (finally) the right time for my husband and I to have a child. And as I hope and pray month after month that God might give us a baby, the Gosnell trial accounts were just too horrific to read. The funny thing is though, some things cannot be un-read. Even though I stopped reading the descriptions of the trial, and despite the fact that after stopping part-way through one article I merely skimmed the details of any remaining news on the matter, the parts I did read will not leave my brain. I am unable to un-read what I already read. I can pretend I didn’t read about it. I can ignore the news about it completely, but I still find that it is in my mind somewhere, tugging at my heart.

All I can do is pray. Pray for the mothers, for the doctors, for the babies. Pray that perhaps one day our nation will open its eyes and stop abortion. I pray and I pray alongside so many others and I know that the Lord hears our prayers. I may not be able to un-read what I read. But I am comforted knowing that God is listening to us and that those precious babies are with Him and filled with happiness and joy and the peace of the Lord.

OTC Plan B Pill Now Available to 15 Year Olds

I just read a news article regarding the FDA lowering the age requirement to buy the Plan B emergency contraceptive pill to 15. More than that, it will no longer be behind counters but instead sold in drugstores aisles with everything else. You can read about it here:  http://news.yahoo.com/fda-morning-pill-ok-ages-15-232957915.html

I read this article and it saddened me. Fifteen years old. I am the oldest of three sisters. I picture my youngest sister, at age 17, and think this pill is going to be sold to girls even younger than her?  I can’t imagine my little sister, much less anyone younger, facing such a thing and being able to make such a drastic decision as the morning-after pill without my parents or anyone else knowing and being able to help. These poor girls at age 15 might not recognize what they are doing. Needing no parental consent to purchase this and having it so readily available in the store aisles makes it seem harmless. And these young 15 year old girls who find themselves in a position where they think they may be with child, they don’t know any better.

How is this helping our nation? Our youth? Our women? When we have people who cannot find enough food to eat in day, people who have been out of work for lengthy periods of time, people who are facing diseases such as cancer and are in debt up to their eyeballs to pay medical bills, with all the troubles we have how in the world did this become a priority?

Regardless of your position on abortion or contraceptives, how could someone think this is an appropriate response? These young girls need someone to talk to. Someone to explain everything. Someone to tell them that sex is not the answer to teenage woes. Someone to tell them it is ok to wait, ok to be a virgin, ok to say no to having sex. And if or when they do, they need someone there to accept it, show understanding and assistance for whatever might happen next. They do not need a magic pill to erase what they have done. Life is not like that. You cannot take a magical pill to erase things you wish hadn’t happened. And if you do, there are surely complications that go along with it. Making this pill so readily available makes it seem like you can have sex whenever you want and should you forgo protection, this will do the trick and you can move on as though nothing ever happened.

I hope and pray that young women will realize this is not a fix all. That they have someone in their lives to guide them and lead them to a better path of handling what may come from the choices they have made. I pray that they have someone in their lives, be it a teacher, a friend, a parent or other relative, to show them what it means to truly respect life and to respect your own body. I pray that these young women and indeed all women have someone to trust, to turn to, to lean on. And should anyone feel so alone or as though there is nowhere to turn, I pray that they will know in their hearts that God is always there. That He is there with all the angels at his side to love, protect, and guide us all through anything.

To Value Life

Today President Obama announced his plans for tighter gun control in America. Among the changes he wishes to see are things such as requiring background checks on all guns sales, banning the military style assault weapons, limiting ammunition magazines to 10 rounds, and increasing the penalties for illegal gun sales. While these measures will need to pass through Congress and will likely face quite a bit of opposition, the President showed his determination to fight for this in his decision to make 23 executive orders on smaller matters such as ordering the CCD to do more research on gun violence and the correlation between media and such violence.

 While I have my own opinions about the President’s views on many issues, I strongly support his efforts to fight gun violence in America. The 2nd Amendment gives Americans the right to bear arms, yes. But nothing that he is proposing will keep Americans from owning a gun for hunting or sport. The assault weapons that Obama is seeking to ban are certainly not for either of those things, they are meant to kill. And you certainly don’t need to be able to fire off more than ten rounds at a time to hunt either!
People will argue and say, “It is our right.” What right are we fighting for? We were given the right to bear arms, and that is still a possibility. But when our forefathers wrote that, how could they have known we would possess such dangerous weapons? What right do we truly need to fight for? How about life? God commands us all, “Thou shalt not kill.” It’s as plain and simple as that. So fighting for the right to allow weapons made to kill to be readily available is not only counterproductive to the greater moral responsibility of protecting lives, it is in direct opposition to God’s law.

 It is impossible to talk about the right to life without mentioning abortion. And seeing as we are coming upon the 40 years since Roe vs. Wade, it certainly should be discussed. Most of my readers will know by now that I am 100% pro-life and I oppose abortion in any circumstance. While I know that our current President does not share my views in this area, and while I strongly oppose measures he has taken to increase birth control and other so-called-rights of women, I have to believe that God has a plan. Any change in our nation has got to start somewhere. In his speech, Obama said, “While there is no law or set of laws that can prevent every senseless act of violence completely, no piece of legislation that will prevent every tragedy, every act of evil, if there’s even one thing we can do to reduce this violence, if there’s even one life that can be saved, then we’ve got an obligation to try it.” I read those words and think perhaps this will be the start of change. God is able to work in any situation we can fathom. He can do all things. And although I do not realistically see Obama suddenly reversing his opinion on abortion, I can’t help but hear his words from this morning’s speech and pray that one day those words will ring true for all lives, including the lives of precious unborn babies.

 In no way do I mean to push aside the issue of abortion. But I feel that as we fight for life, we need to be true to our obligation to protect and preserve life in all stages and in whatever way we can. And I believe the gun control measures are one small step in that direction. Certainly it is not guns alone which are the cause for such tragedies as the recent Sandy Hook shooting. Other factors are in play including mental illness and a culture of violence. In my opinion, this culture is what needs to change to truly fight violence. We need to again become a country that protects its children, that honors God, that prays, that teaches our children right from wrong with no gray area in between. Killing is wrong. Whether by gun, by abortion, by euthanasia, by death penalty, and so on. Killing is wrong. God can do wondrous things even in the most unlikely circumstances. I pray that through the measures the President is working to take and through God’s never-ending grace, we may begin to create a culture where all life truly is valued.

Are Women’s Rights at Risk?

As the election creeps closer and closer, the political ads are even more prominent.  Something about the election is featured in every news broadcast.  Every commercial break holds at least one political ad.  It saddens me to see the turn that these ads have taken.  With all the issues that face this nation right now, much of the political agenda has been focused on a women’s choice lately.  And the problem is not one sided.  The Obama campaign is pouring money into ads with women stating how frightened they are by their rights being threatened because of Romney’s previous “support” of ending Planned Parenthood and fighting abortion.  On the opposite end, Romney’s campaign has denied many of these claims and does not clearly state his position at all.  The reason these ads sadden me so is that it has taken a touchy issue, twisted it, and made it the face of the campaign.  While we are facing economic troubles, healthcare debates, international tensions, and more, we are arguing over whether women’s rights are at jeopardy.  While everyone will have their own opinion, I would like to state mine.  Are the rights of women being jeopardized by the threat of a Republican candidate opposing Planned Parenthood and abortion?  No.

Planned Parenthood’s website offers information on the services they provide.  Abortion, birth control, the morning after pill, STDs, and women’s health are among the services listed on the main webpage.  So let’s think about what Planned Parenthood truly has to offer.  Abortion is the top service listed.  When you click on their link for information, the website tells you that 1 in 3 women in the United State will have an abortion before the age of 45.  Now, in all these political ads, the focus seems to be on how terrible ending abortion would be because of victims of rape who become pregnant.  Rape or any sexual assault is terrible.  Never ever ever would I defend that.  The Rape Abuse and Incest National Network estimates that in one year (using 2004-2005 as their study year) .o5% of rape resulted in pregnancy.  Looking at those statistics, I think it is clear that rape is certainly not the leading reason for 1 in 3 women in America having an abortion.  Most women are having an abortion because they are having unprotected relationships when they are not ready for the actual consequences.  Instead of teaching women to respect their bodies and to wait for a real relationship, Planned Parenthood spends 33.5% of its funding on contraceptive services.  Not surprisingly, another 38% of their funding is spent on STD testing and treating.  So over 70% of the funding goes towards preventing pregnancy, and another 3% of funds are strictly for abortions.  73%.  That’s a huge majority.  What makes this more upsetting is the fact that 46% of the funding Planned Parenthood receives is from the US Government.  (All of the above Planned Parenthood information is taken from Planned Parenthood’s most recent annual report found on their website)

Planned Parenthood also lists services such as women’s general health including preventative health care.  Many people are latching onto this as a reason to continue Planned Parenthood.  Well, according to the new healthcare reform, every American must have insurance.  And every insurance provider is required to provide women with preventative healthcare without charge.  So why is Planned Parenthood necessary for this?  Is it really necessary to spend that money on services we now have required elsewhere? 

So with all these questions in mind and with all of the information above, do I believe that my rights as a woman are at risk because of the possible statement that Planned Parenthood is unnecessary?  Absolutely not.  If anything is at risk, it is the right to religious freedom which is being threatened by the HHS mandate.  The right to stand up and say, I do not believe that and will NOT support and pay for something that goes against my beliefs.  If someone’s rights are being threatened, perhaps it is the rights of the unborn children who are being lost to abortion.  These rights truly are at risk and truly are being threatened. 

Many people will fight for the “Right of Choice” when talking about abortion.  It seems to me that this is not the argument at all.  If these people would only listen to the Lord who tells us that He knows us in the womb, from the moment of conception, they will see that this is not a matter of choice at all. It is ending a life, plain and simple.  Women do have a choice.  They can choose to have sex.   They can choose to go for routine checkups or to avoid the doctor.  They can choose to take care of their bodies in whatever way they feel is appropriate.  But no woman, no person at all for that matter, has the right to make a choice that will end the life of another innocent person. 

The political ads are telling me that I should be frightened of the times ahead as a woman because of the threat to our choice.  They are asking me what choices I will be left with as a women.  While it is not what the ad intended, I would say that I do agree with one small point.  Rights of Americans are being jeopardized and that is a frightening thing.  Too many people don’t get a choice at all.  Instead of fighting for the right for a woman, or for anyone, to make a choice that ends the life of another person, I believe we need to be more interested in the choices of those who are unable to voice their own desire to live.  I believe that we need to protect one very important right for ALL Americans.  And that is the right to life for everyone.