Today The United States has the highest death rate during birth among developed countries with Texas being the leading state. Why is this happening? Why does the United States have one of the worst maternal mortality rates? In recent years, women’s access to affordable reproductive health services has sharply declined due to the decrease in funding to the family planning budget which gave money to women’s health programs. As a result, women have had to turn to Planned Parenthood, a non-profit organization that gives advice on family planning, contraception and family planning and other clinics aimed at providing affordable services to women. Planned Parenthood is important to society because it provides services to 2.7 million men and women, it has affordable service for low-income women, and it screens for various types of cancer along with providing inexpensive contraception (Strickland).
One reason why Planned Parenthood is so detrimental to society is it provides services to 2.7 million Americans, men included (Strickland). One popular myth about Planned Parenthood is it only benefits women but CNN reports that on official documents released from Planned Parenthood “3,545 vasectomies were performed in 2017 through planned parenthood” (Strickland). Even with this statistic, many feel as if Planned Parenthood is a waste of money because not everyone needs it. The primary beneficiaries of Planned Parenthood are uninsured or live in low-income areas. Another statistic from CNN reports that Planned Parenthood is the only source of healthcare for 4 in 10 people (Strickland). So since it is less than half, many people argue that since they do not benefit from it or need it, their tax money should not go to an organization that they do not need.
Another reason why Planned Parenthood is essential to society is the majority of people who benefit from its services are from low-income communities. In the article “Four Reasons Why Planned Parenthood Is an Essential Health Care Provider,” it provides the statistic that in the year of 2013 around 70% of Planned Parenthood patients had incomes below the federal poverty level. Not only is this eye-opening but it is truly heartbreaking because so many people benefit from Planned Parenthood’s services and the Trump administration has seemed determined on limiting the already restricted services that Planned Parenthood can provide. As an alternative to Planned Parenthood, women will often find alternatives that are extremely unsafe and can result in death or life-threatening diseases.
An additional reason why Planned Parenthood is important to society is it provides screening for multiple types of cancer along with vaccinations and birth control. One of the main controversies around Planned Parenthood is it provides abortions. In reality, 3% of all of Planned Parenthood’s services go to abortions and tax money cannot be spent on abortions (Kurtzleben). Most of what Planned Parenthood provides is wellness exams, cancer screenings, birth control, contraception education and testing and treatment for STIs and STDs (Parenthood). In 2014 alone “270,00 pap smears, 360,00 breast exams, and 3,545 vasectomies were performed and 941,589 emergency contraception kits were provided” (Strickland). The notion that Planned Parenthood is an evil foundation because they perform abortions is understandable but, in context, less than a third of what it does goes towards abortions. Planned Parenthood’s overall goal is to benefit the general welfare of all citizens regardless of income status.
Although many people believe that Planned Parenthood’s services are lifesaving and fundamental to an efficient society, others claim that Planned Parenthood and those who benefit from it are immoral. Many conservative tactics, in regards to birth control, consist of practicing abstinence which, in the 21st century, is an unlikely task. For women who live in religious centered communities, there is no such thing as a contraceptive. For example, in the article “Women’s Health in Harm’s Way” by Alexandria Zavis, Texas Tech student Aubrey Reinhardt was attempting to look for a clinic that sold contraceptives but the Christian clinic that she went to did not provide any. Not only did she have trouble finding a clinic, but when she visited her primary practitioner, he laughed in her face and asked why she was in such a rush to have sex. And when it comes to abortions, Jonathan Emord author of “Planned Parenthood’s Evil Empire” referred to abortions as a “grotesque inhumanity” which is a common belief among the pro-life community.
Planned Parenthood has done an array of positive deeds for women, typically low income and uninsured. The ‘defund Planned Parenthood movement’ seems to have an uninformed perception of what Planned Parenthood actually does. If they choose to, they too could benefit from Planned Parenthood’s services as it is inexpensive and the safer option for our bodies. Overall, the various types of services that Planned Parenthood has provided have saved millions of lives in counting and will continue to do so no matter how hard the government makes it.