Downstairs, Zandar linked McMegan’s latest mind-yammerings in The Atlantic, and like some unstoppable idiot, I got out of the boat and read her article. Ostensibly the article is supposed to be a response to Jeffrey Goldberg’s article. In actuality, it’s her traditional steaming pile of brain-shit.
I know it’s been All Komen All Day over here, but with apologies to Monsieur Levenson, I want to highlight one of her “arguments” (such as they are):
Nor do I think that this [Komen defunding Planned Parenthood] is somehow fatal–indeed, the news of the Komen foundation’s funding withdrawal was met by an outpouring of donations that, as of this writing, has nearly replaced the lost funds. And I don’t think that’s an accident. If Planned Parenthood didn’t provide abortions–if it had decided, post-Roe, to continue doing all the contraception provision and pelvic exams, but to stay out of the abortion side of the business–many of the people who now send them large checks probably wouldn’t bother. I’d guess that a considerable portion of their donor base is making an expressive commitment to abortion rights, but of course, the flip side of that is people who make an expressive decision not to give them money.
What would make Miss 1500 Dollar Food Processor think that those who are donating money to Planned Parenthood are making an expressive commitment to abortion rights, as opposed to making an expressive commitment to women’s health for low-income women? I donate to Planned Parenthood because I appreciate the fact that when I was broke and had no health insurance in the early 90s, I was able to go to Planned Parenthood for non-abortion services. I’ve never had an abortion (not that there’s anything wrong with it). I suspect thousands of women have availed themselves of Planned Parenthood’s services without getting abortions. I am certainly pleased that an organization like Planned Parenthood champions the reproductive rights of women, and has not given in to Forced Birth Propaganda (the sort of propaganda to which Karen Handel, Nancy Brinker, and others have fallen prey.) Women have a right to decide for themselves what goes in and out of their bodies. The government has no right to force women to quarter fetuses in their wombs. Isn’t it against, like, the Third Amendment or something? No? Well it should be!
But, more important than offering abortion services (THREE PERCENT, folks!), Planned Parenthood is often the only option available for low-income women to obtain healthcare related to their lady-business. As asiangrrlMN noted in her post, 76% of their clients have incomes at or below 150% of the federal poverty level.
So fuck you very much, Megan McArdle.
UPDATE: Oh and there’s this too (not McMegan-related) from Daily Kos:
In 2000, when I first became a breast cancer activist, one of my first assignments was contacting the senators and members of Congress in my area to encourage their support for the Breast & Cervical Cancer Prevention & Treatment Act. The bill was to provide Medicaid coverage for uninsured women diagnosed through the Breast & Cervical Cancer Prevention & Screening Act, which had been passed several years earlier. IOW, the Treatment Act was necessary because uninsured women were getting no-cost breast cancer diagnosis, but still had no means to pay for treatment.
Sounds easy, right? You screen and diagnose them, you have to help them get treatment. Except one of my GOP senators didn’t see it that way, and he had another breast cancer group who agreed with him….
Upon calling my GOP senator and speaking with his aide, I was shocked to hear her tell me “Sen.__ can’t sign on as a co-sponsor to the bill because all the breast cancer groups aren’t in agreement on it.” Shocked, I asked her who was opposing it. She told me that Komen opposed the bill. When I asked her why, she explained that Komen felt that treatment for uninsured breast cancer patients should be funded through private donations, like the pink ribbon race. I was speechless, in shock. A phone call to another activist confirmed it was true – Komen was lobbying behind the scenes to kill the bill. A moment later, Sen.__’s aide called me back and begged me not to repeat our conversation to anyone, that she had given me the information by mistake.
Thus my lesson about Komen began in 2000. They spend a lot of money lobbying for a very different agenda.
Skeletons are tumbling out of the Komen Kloset.
[somewhat cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles]