Sunday, February 20, 2011

Excuse me!

Now, I try not to get too much into politics here, but I feel that we have a really serious situation that is relevant to this blog and that I think is not a partisan issue so much as a basic human decency issue. Our representatives in the House just voted 240-185 to pass the Pence Amendment, which if made into law, will strip Planned Parenthood of all its federal funding.

You might be thinking now, "What. Excuse me. Not okay. Not acceptable. Not appropriate."

At least, that is what you should be thinking. Actually, you should be thinking that, but with a lot of other words in addition that I won't say here because it's a Sunday. But seriously, this is not acceptable.

This nation needs Planned Parenthood. I cannot tell you how important it is. I cannot tell you how many people I worked with during my short stay who had absolutely nowhere else to turn-- people who would have continued bleeding as they had for months, or not bleeding but not seeking prenatal care, or having sex while unsure whether they'd contracted HIV, or people who were in constant pain because the birth control they got wasn't right for them, or people whose birth control consisted of finger-crossing and four-leaf clovers, or people who had been raped and needed the Plan B pill.

I could go on for even longer, but I can assure you that I met at least one person who fell into each of these categories, and many more, who needed this help. I don't know how we can claim to be a nation founded on Christian values if we refuse to help heal the sick. I don't know how we can feel okay spending incredible amounts of money trying to bring democracy to countries that didn't ask for it and then turn around and refuse to provide basic care-- a tiny, tiny, insignificant, microscopic fraction of our national budget-- to people who are begging for care. On top of the monstrosity of this attack, there is the fact that it is simply stupid-- babies cost so much more money than birth control, cancer treatments cost so much more than pap smears, and condoms cost so much less than STD treatment. Institutions like Planned Parenthood just make sense for our economy because they are an investment. I don't think there's a soul on this planet who will deny that preventative medicine is a wise choice, and Planned Parenthood offers preventative medicine to those who need it the most.

I don't know how anyone supporting this proposal can sleep at night, but I know that I won't be able to until I have done everything I can to make sure that the wonderful and necessary institution receives the funding it needs to continue helping people who need help.

Hopefully I've convinced you. The question is how to put this passion into action. Here's what you can do:

1: Donate. A big part of P.P.'s funding comes from donations, and they especially need money right now. Make donations here.

2: Sign Planned Parenthood's open letter to congress. Let congress know that the people want the Pear. Sign here.

3: Call, email, write, send smoke signals, send a telegram, contact your senator and let him or her know how you feel about Planned Parenthood. To find your senators contact info, go here. It's fun, I promise. Just let them know where you live, what you'd like your senator to do and why. For a template for an email, go here and scroll down.

4: Spread the word! This is one case where I think the whole "slacktivism" thing might actually be helpful, as long as your efforts include the link to the open letter. Talk to your friends about why you love Planned Pear, link the open letter/this blog post/the PP website on your Facebook/Twitter/etcetc, shout from the rooftops your praises to the great and glorious Pear and make sure everyone knows that it needs help!

Okay, team. I hope I have your support. We all know that Planned Parenthood needs federal funding and that we need Planned Parenthood. Stand with the Planned!

(To be honest with you, I'm sitting with Planned Parenthood in this shot.)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting, Ingrid. Here is the letter I sent to my senators:

    Planned Parenthood is incredibly important for the well-being of the entire nation. Not only to allow men and women to protect their bodies from STDs and cancer, regardless of their economic circumstances, although this is a great service in and of itself. If we are going to improve as a nation in areas of poverty, education, and health care, women and families need to have options when it comes to family planning. If Planned Parenthood loses public funding, those options will be greatly diminished, especially for men and women who are in economic distress and in dire need of counsel, education and services in the area of family planning and safe and healthy sex.

    I consider access to contraception, birth control, and health services a basic civil right, so I am asking you to vote against the proposal to cut funding for Planned Parenthood. Please don't be afraid to boldly voice your reasons, and the reasons of many of my friends, colleagues, and family members--your constituents.

    Thank you,

    Eva Asplund

    Also: "condoms cost so much more than STD treatment" I think you meant the reverse.