According to the folks at the New York Times, this whole Planned Parenthood story is not a story. And if anybody needs to be investigated, says the Times, it’s certainly not the country’s largest abortion provider, which we’ve now learned is possibly also in the business of selling aborted babies’ livers, hearts and other body parts for tissue research. No, no, it’s the group that has brought that latter fact to light that we need to be questioning.
That’s right: the editorial board of the newspaper whose motto is “All the news that’s fit to print” doesn’t think a story exposing the alleged selling of and profiting from human body parts is worth printing and is nothing more than, as the Times editorial headline reads, a “Campaign of Deception Against Planned Parenthood.”
Says the Times: “The Center for Medical Progress video campaign is a dishonest attempt to make legal, voluntary and potentially lifesaving tissue donations appear nefarious and illegal.”
No, what the group who produced the videos sought to do was show the American public what is going on in Planned Parenthood clinics beyond all the “nice” services they publicly advertise such as cancer screenings and giving out free contraception.
And if you listen to the statements made by two Planned Parenthood officials, Dr. Deborah Nucatola in video one and Dr. Mary Gatter in video two, it is quite plausible that the organization is indeed violating federal laws—specifically, sections of the Public Health Service Act that prohibit abortion providers from altering their method of conducting an abortion in order to obtain human fetal tissue or organs (Nucatola seems to admit to doing just this in the first video) and another that forbids the sale of human fetal organs and tissue for profit (Gatter wants to “negotiate” prices in video two).
Eric Ferrero, vice president of communications for Planned Parenthood of America, told The Washington Post that “these videos are part of a decade-long campaign of deceiving the public, making false charges and terrorizing women and their doctors, all in order to ban abortion and cut women off from care at Planned Parenthood.”
If there is nothing to hide and nothing illegal going on, then Planned Parenthood and their friends at the New York Times shouldn’t be worried. But they are, and for good reason.
Not only may congressional investigations find that Planned Parenthood is violating federal laws, and not only do these videos produce a public relations nightmare by showing the callous attitude of senior leaders in the organization toward the sanctity of human life, but this also forces the debate over taxpayer funding of abortion into the headlines. That might be even more concerning to Planned Parenthood.
Americans may not be ready to ban all abortions or overturn Roe v. Wade, but polls show that the vast majority want limits on the procedure. A 2015 Marist poll showed that 7 in 10 Americans, including women and millennials, oppose taxpayer funding of abortion. And there’s the rub…Planned Parenthood receives over $500 million in taxpayer funds each year.
It’s true, as the Times asserts in its editorial that, that “[a]nti-abortion groups have long pushed to defund Planned Parenthood[.]” A congressional investigation into this latest scandal may very well show those groups have been right all along.