Your tax dollars are not charitable donations

I sure wish they were, but they aren’t. But, tell that to the GOP who thinks it is perfectly OK to eliminate federal funding for all community clinic family planning programs – which just happens to include all federal funding for Planned Parenthood clinics – all under the guise of making sure that none of their pro life voting supporters’ tax dollars go IN ANY WAY towards funding abortions.

They don’t care that there is already a law preventing it from happening directly. Planned Parenthood is required to carefully separate its abortion expense from all others. Abortions are performed in a different building, or a designated floor with specifically designated staff to ensure that there is no crossover of funds.

But the pro life voting block is still not happy with that. In their minds, any federal money provided to PP frees up other funds to pay for their abortion services.

Well, gosh folks, I hate to break it to you but we don’t GET to designate our tax dollars to specific programs!! There are PLENTY of things the Federal Government does with my tax dollars that I sure as heck don’t like. Forget obvious things like war spending which I am pretty sure many other citizens don’t particularly support. Defense of our borders, yes. Invading other countries for reasons as yet to be determined? Not so much. How about subsidies to oil companies? You know, those conglomerates that make billions year after year and yet never pay a DIME in taxes thanks to industry specific tax breaks. Then on top of that, they get federal money in subsidies? Because, you know, they really NEED that!

Farm subsidies too. Not all of them of course, just the ones that help out foods I don’t like. Such as brussel sprouts. I never buy the things and hate to know that any of my hard earned tax dollars are being used to grow them. Yuck. Ptooey! It’s against my taste bud’s beliefs!

Alas, that is just not how taxes work. Citizens pay taxes to fund the government. It’s mandatory, not voluntary. Sure, we can designate $3 to go to the Presidential election fund when we file our taxes, but who does that? Seriously  – do any of you ever check that box? Otherwise, we have no say. That there has been enough of a citizen backed movement to have in place this restriction on federal funding for abortion  – a completely legal medical procedure – is rather unusual as it is. It also has the side effect of making it harder for low income women to exercise their right to choose since they are the ones who will need to use a family planning clinic like PP. Still, the Hyde amendment has been the law of the land for appropriations bills since 1976 and was also specifically attached to the recently passed Affordable Care Act to ensure that any government subsidized health care plan would not be covering abortions. Again – who would use that? Lower income women.

The thing is – setting aside how one might feel about abortion one way or the other – the attempt to eliminate funding from Title X programs has an even deeper impact on families who need ALL of the services they provide.

Abortions only represent 3% of the services PP provides. Contraception is 35%, testing for sexually transmitted diseases is 34% and cancer screening and prevention is 17%.

It seems to me that people who are so concerned about stopping abortions should be equally, if not MORE concerned about *preventing* unplanned pregnancies in the first place. Mike Pence, the GOP Congressman who introduced this bill even acknowledged that stating that he applauds “the important work that is done in Title X clinics across this country: breast cancer screening, HIV protection, education, counseling, pregnancy diagnosis.”

Unfortunately, applauding does not mean supporting those services enough to fund them.

Ironically, the original Title X program was signed into law by GOP President Richard Nixon in 1970. Of course, by today’s Republican party standards, Nixon would be a Democrat! He proclaimed that “no American woman should be denied access to family planning assistance because of her economic condition.”

Thank you Mr Nixon, I agree.

Unfortunately the 2011 GOP led congress does not. They are fine with halting funding for 2.2 million Pap smears, 2.3 million breast exams and nearly 6 million tests for sexually transmitted diseases.

An informal survey of my female friends on the internet resulted in a response of close to 85% who used a Title X funded clinic at some point in their lives. For most of us it was in our early 20s when money and insurance were tight or non existent. For others it was later on, or perhaps even a constant back up because the industries they worked in were victims to lay offs or lack of complete insurance coverage because they are independent contractors. One woman had her breast cancer detected early at a Planned Parenthood clinic and to this day she credits them with saving her life.

Now, the good thing for women is that the Democrats still hold the Senate and the WH and this particular part of the budget bill wont pass. But I also think that women need to pay attention to what message the GOP is sending to you. I’m not a raging feminist, but damn if this doesn’t feel like an assault on our mere existence! Another message about control feels like it is being sent along. Your bodies are not yours my dears. You are not free to seek all the medical services you may need.  Especially if you are poor. First those services need to pass their religious purity tests. And that matters more than anything.

Even your own life.

(Oh yeah, and just how many jobs would this bill have created? Because, you know, it’s all about JOBS, right?!)



  1. I don’t know why pro-abortionists have such a difficult time wrapping their head around the idea that Federal funds allow them to divert money to abortion services. They can cover all other expenses with Federal dollars, thereby freeing up money for abortions. The Hyde Amendment is utterly useless.

    Planned Parenthood and all their supporters are going down – and fast. Your Regressive Messiah will be on his way out the door come 2012, and hopefully, so will all his minions in the senate.

    You people are morally bankrupt, and you’ve done nothing but tear this country apart.

    1. “You people”
      Who would that be, exactly? And who do you think is “pro-abortion”? PLEASE.
      Anything at all to say about the other services being provided? Women don’t matter, period. You’d rather see women die. That’s the truth here.

    2. I do believe this comment reflects just about every right wing stereotype.
      Right down to the avatar – depicting a man who, while a bit closer match than Nixon, would still also struggle to conform point for point with this extreme version of the GOP.

      Such a lovely, Christian response too! PP supporters are “going down”? Really? What exactly does that mean? If your goal is for PP to no longer exist as an institution, I understand that. But you also included “all their supporters” which I assume means all their employees & also people like Vegas & I who support them and have used them in the past. Do you want all of us to no longer exist too? How would you go about achieving that goal? Sounds a bit threatening don’t you think?

      You leave a response like that and then conclude by accusing ME of being morally bankrupt and tearing the country apart? I do believe that you should be checking out the mirror to see a clearer example of those qualities.

      But hey – thanks for stopping by and speaking your mind. Next time, check out the rules I’ve set out here about serious, respectful debate on the topics and try to avoid the insults. Honestly some of the best conversations I’ve had with my conservative friends has been on abortion. We’ve even come to a consensus on many things. But it does require an open mind & respect for the other human being across from you.

  2. I had to remove Terrance’s reply to my comment due to further personal insults.
    To be fair, he did clarify that by “going down” he meant that in a political way only. That Democrats would be voted out and, yes, that Planned Parenthood would cease to exist.
    He did not, however, respond to the questions about what then would happen to women & families who seek out PP for those other 97% of non abortion related services. He also did not address the fact that this is in attempt to defund Title X entirely which is not JUST Planned Parenthood but ALL family planning related clinics for low income families which receive federal funds. Again – which provide all kids of health care screenings, tests & services for those without insurance or the ability to pay out of pocket.
    I’m happy to debate people who are pro life, but not when they start from the beginning with sweeping generalizations of all liberals as lacking in intelligence. Condescension & disrespect is not a way to start a debate and since Terrance also decided to go attack my friend on her site, it looks to me like he is a classic troll just going onto liberal sites to throw around insults in the attempt to create a fight.

  3. Stirring the pot, are you? 😉

    I’ve given up the term “pro-life” as most of those I’ve met who claim to be “pro-life” are only pro-life when it comes to embryos and fetuses, but couldn’t care less what happens to the child after birth (having some form of medical insurance for them is one good example). Those pro-lifers also tend to be all for invading other countries, thereby killing people (hardly pro-life), and the death penalty. But that’s my experience. There may be pro-life people who truly are all-out pro-life. I just haven’t met them yet.

    I use the term anti-abortion, even though I don’t know a single soul, not even pro-choice people, who are FOR abortion. What they are generally FOR is a woman’s right to decide what happens with her body.

    I do find it interesting that it’s usually white males who come out against abortion. Wonder why that is? (Seriously. I do wonder.)

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