As the debate in Washington continues to heat up over the half billion dollars Planned Parenthood receives in taxpayer funding each year, the abortion chain has been desperate to have its celebrity proponents be visible in their support. From Charlize Theron and Lena Dunham to Anna Paquin and Katy Perry, Planned Parenthood is hoping these influencers will help win over the general public and save its funding.
Stars have done fundraising events, tweeted about “abortion rights,” and taken photos of themselves wearing Planned Parenthood T-shirts.
Part of Planned Parenthood’s strategy in attracting such endorsements is an attempt to add star power to the claim that it is an “essential” provider of women’s health care, especially for lower income women.
But for years, Planned Parenthood has deceived the public about what it does. That’s why there are four things I wish these celebrities knew about Planned Parenthood before lending their celebrity and encouraging people to support a corporation that cares more about its bottom line than helping women.
Planned Parenthood misleads about the services it provides to women.
Planned Parenthood has claimed for years that prenatal care was an integral part of the services it provides to pregnant women, with President Cecile Richards stating, “These are the kinds of services that folks depend on Planned Parenthood for.” However, after an extensive investigation, Live Action discovered that prenatal care is virtually non-existent at its facilities.
Of the 97 centers we looked into, 92 turned away our investigators posing as pregnant women wanting to keep their babies. Planned Parenthood employees were caught on camera telling them things like, “We don’t do prenatal services. I mean, it’s called Planned Parenthood. I know it’s kind of deceiving,” and “We don’t offer prenatal care at Planned Parenthood… we specialize in abortions.”
As much as Planned Parenthood talks about “choice,” it isn’t focused on helping women who choose to carry a child to term or anything that follows.
After we released our investigation, Planned Parenthood refused to tell inquiring reporters how many of its centers actually provide prenatal care.
Planned Parenthood doesn’t do that much to fight cancer.
Planned Parenthood has claimed that without taxpayer funding, women will be left without access to vital cancer screenings. Despite this claim, Planned Parenthood’s own annual reports show it performs less than two percent of the nation’s clinical breast exams and less than one percent of the nation’s Pap tests.
And over the last 10 years of Planned Parenthood’s reports, those services have been declining rapidly. Breast exams are down 62 percent, from 842,399 in 2005 to 321,700 in 2015; and Pap tests are down 74 percent, from 1,116,681 to a dismal 293,799. Yet over that same time period, abortions are up 24 percent – to 328,348 in 2015. Abortions at Planned Parenthood in 2015 exceeded the number of breast exams performed.
What about those mammograms Planned Parenthood had claimed for years that it provided – a claim that many of its supporters and media outlets still make today? Well, at a congressional hearing in 2015, Cecile Richards was forced to admit under oath that the organization has never performed a single mammogram -- not one.
Planned Parenthood’s business is abortion, plain and simple.
Planned Parenthood is America’s largest abortion chain by far, committing over 320,000 abortions every year and holding over 34 percent of the market share for abortions in the United States. That means the abortion giant takes the lives of nearly 900 preborn children every day.
How does it achieve these staggering numbers? It has abortion quotas for its facilities. Former Planned Parenthood facility manager Sue Thayer revealed to me in an interview, “I trained my staff the way that I was trained, which was to really encourage women to choose abortion, to have it at Planned Parenthood, because it counts towards our goal.”
Recently, President Donald Trump offered Planned Parenthood the option of continuing to receive a half billion dollars in taxpayer funding on the condition that it stop committing abortions and instead only provide health care services. Planned Parenthood refused, proving yet again where its priorities lie.
The abortions Planned Parenthood commits don’t remove “clumps of cells.” They are violent and brutal.
Many people don’t understand what really happens during abortions or the level of development of children in the womb. In a series of short online videos at abortionprocedures.com, former abortionist Dr. Anthony Levatino uses medical animations to accurately demonstrate what happens to mother and child during the four most prevalent abortion procedures. The videos show not only how amazingly developed the children are, but also how they suffer - whether by being poisoned, starved to death, or ripped apart limb by limb.
Planned Parenthood attempts to cover up the violence by pretending what’s in the womb isn’t actually human yet. Staff refuse to show mothers the ultrasound images and call the preborn children “clumps of cells,” even though they have beating hearts just three and a half weeks after fertilization.
These are four basic truths I wish all women knew about Planned Parenthood. It’s my hope that women of power and influence can use their voices to advocate for the most vulnerable in our society, especially those whom popular politics may dehumanize or demean. It’s also my life’s work to remind women that children are not antithetical to their empowerment and that turning mothers against their children disrespects the humanity of both. Abortion is a trap for women — it’s a promise to solve a perceived problem with a violent and deadly act that destroys one innocent life and wounds another.
Charlize, Lena, Katy, and Anna, let’s stand up for women everywhere — including the littlest women in the womb. Use your platforms to elevate the rights of all women, not to promote a corporation devoted to the destruction of the most vulnerable.
Lila Rose is the president and founder of the national pro-life organization, Live Action.