Monday, August 28, 2006

Planned Parenthood's Idea of Informed 'Choice'

Planned Parenthood is often accused of attempting to sway clients with positive pregnancy tests to choose abortions, a charge the organization denies. In light of that, I found a Planned Parenthood representative's comments to a reporter doing a story on a pregnancy resource center, a parenting-class center, and a Planned Parenthood chapter, to be very telling.

Stephanie Veale writes in the Utica Observer article "Values and Consequences":

Planned Parenthood counselors facilitate the decision-making process by making sure patients know how a choice will affect them. If a young teenager wants to keep her baby, a counselor might ask questions like, "How will this fit in with school?" and "Who will take care of the baby every day?" Schenectady-based counseling manager Sue Wendelgass said.

"The goal is not to alter their decision, but to get them to look at it in the context of their lives," Wendelgass said. Sometimes a woman hasn't thought her decision through all the way, and counseling helps her do that, she said.
Do you think that if the teenager answered that having her baby would indeed make it hard for her to stay in school, or that she would have trouble getting child care, Planned Parenthood's Wendelgass would bend over backwards to connect her with social services? Would she do everything legitimately within her power to make keeping the baby as attractive a choice as possible, as do pregnancy resource centers such as A Bridge to Life?

Nuh-uh. It's all about getting teens to look at at their unborn babies — I mean, as Planned Parenthood puts it, "pregnancy tissue" — within "the context of their lives." Meaning the teens' lives — because, kids, being pregnant is All About YOU.

When a teenager is encouraged to think of a human being inside her body as being subject only to her own desires, what is to prevent the teenager from persisting in such narcissism if and when she ever brings such a child into the world? After all, if the child only exists because it fits conveniently into her life, why should she bother to keep it alive when it becomes inconvenient? To an abortion supporter, the answer can't be because the child, once born, has unique human qualities; there is nothing substantial in the born person's humanity that did not exist in it when it was unborn.