Planned Parenthood Stands Up To Violence, People Need To Stand Up For Planned Parenthood

Ralph Lang, an angry and demented idiot from Marshfield with a handgun was arrested in Madison this week before he could pull the trigger and kill untold numbers of people at Planned Parenthood.  The news makes for a sober ending to the work week. 

As the Wisconsin Legislature carelessly works to allow anyone the right to carry a concealed handgun we are again reminded of the anger and unstable makeup of many in our society.   Lang represents the worst kind of madman.  One that feels he has a mission from God to spill blood.

Planned Parenthood is a worthwhile and essential organization.  Not only in Madison but throughout the state and nation.  They serve a purpose for women and our whole society.  Too often Planned Parenthood is vilified and willfully misunderstood for the sake of political chicanery by conservatives and out-and-out wackadoodles.

After a near tragedy such as the one that made news this week in Madison it is again time to recognize the need for not only gun control, but also the continued rights of women to control their own bodies.  That there are some who would go the lengths Ralph Lang was planning strongly underscores the reasons we all must stand up for Planned Parenthood, and the rights of women.

Today Teri Huyck, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood released a statement.  In part she said the following.

Unfortunately, we are working in an environment where a vocal few would like to see us cease being a part of Wisconsin’s health care community.  When anti-abortion organizations and politicians vilify Planned Parenthood as a health care provider, they embolden people like this man who would turn to violence.  Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin will stand strong and continue to be a trusted provider of comprehensive reproductive health care services in communities throughout Wisconsin.

It is at times like this that I most admire Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin’s staff.  They continue to provide the highest quality health care even in the face of their own personal safety.  Their personal strength and commitment to our mission and our health care is without equal.  Additionally, we are stronger and safer because we have the commitment and support of people like you who fully understand the critical role all the health care we provide plays in the lives of women and families. 

Wisconsin Republicans On Joint Finance Endanger Women’s Health With Party-Line Vote

Do  Wisconsin Republicans on the Joint Finance Committee just pick and chose which parts of the modern era that wish to reside in?   In other words do they still opt for their BlackBerry and GPS units at the same time they are consigning women to the back of the bus when it comes to reproductive health care?  Do these elected Republicans really scorn the level of modernity over women’s health rights  that most of their fellow citizens endorse, and very much enjoy?

It was hard to watch the Planned Parenthood issue get debated in Joint Finance. I have no need to care about conservative constituencies, and certainly no need to wonder if a teabagger is lurking to challenge me come the next election.  Yet I wondered why there was a complete lack of awareness among the elected Republicans about the needs, and yes the RIGHTS of women when it comes to reproductive health issues.  

When it was over by a party-line vote of 12-4 about $1 million a year had been cut in family planning funding to Planned Parenthood. This was not a good outcome for the state, or for the women these Republicans claim to honor and represent every election cycle.

The damming consequences of the amendment that passed would disallow any abortion providers in Wisconsin, or those affiliated with those that perform abortions or even just make referrals, from receiving a state grant targeted for women’s health programs.  In other words funding for women’s health services such as cervical cancer screening,  annual exams, or even birth control that is provided by agencies such as Planned Parenthood would be eliminated.  The reason is that even if an agency talks about abortion as an option, but the procedure is not actually performed by that agency, funding to that agency would still be eliminated.     

That is just plain crazy!

That low-income women in rural districts without health care might not have other options than visiting Planned Parenthood or a similar agency for exams seemed lost on the Republicans.  Since the GOP seems averse to national health care I wonder what solutions they favor and are willing to pay for so all women can have their medical needs met?

The average citizen in Wisconsin understands that it is not acceptable for some to still think there is a right to snoop into the private places and dictate what a woman should do with her body.  This is 2011, and yet in the Joint Finance room Wednesday I am sure some of the audience were checking their calendars just to be sure.  The debate that was underway makes me wonder how someone elected to office can still be so woefully misguided and uneducated about basic issues impacting women.

One of the other aspects to the measure that passed prohibits men from receiving family planning services through a state program!  I have no idea why this makes sense to Republicans.  Yet it passed.  I would think the more accurate and timely information that an agency could provide would only allow for people to make better choices.  Those wiser decisions impact all of society in a number of ways from preventing the spread of STD’s to lowering the number of unplanned and unwanted pregnancies.

At the end of the day one questions lingers.

Just what happens to make an otherwise seemingly intelligent legislator come to view Planned Parenthood as the boogeyman?

Republicans And “Forcible Rape”, GOP Wants Culture War

I know the elections were last November and I am getting older and so things can be more difficult to recall and retain……

But did anyone hear last fall that Republicans were going to tackle abortion within the first weeks of their time leading the House of Representatives?

I thought this was a jobs….smack President Obama…..jobs…smack the President again….jobs… type of House of Representatives.  I was not aware the culture wars were starting again. 

Did the American people sign up for more culture wars and I was not aware of it?

Furthermore, did anyone hear last fall the Republicans were doing to redefine the term rape?  And in so doing tick women in the nation?

Look, as a male I am outraged at this action.

I can only image what women would feel about the term “forcible rape”.    How cheap, insensitive, and demeaning to those victims of rape.

Today the three-thumb crowd, better known as Congressional Republicans, removed the offending language.  But only after being taken to the woodshed by many from around the nation.

House Republicans have opted to drop the word “forcible” from a section of House bill about abortion that addresses rape, following widespread condemnation from Democrats and abortion rights activists. 

The “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” also known as H.R. 3, is a bill that would make permanent the “Hyde Amendment” – a provision banning the use of taxpayer subsidies for abortions that currently requires annual Congressional renewal. 

The bill came under fire earlier this week, however, for changes it made to the original language of the amendment – which includes exemptions for women who have become pregnant as a result of rape, incest or life-threatening illnesses. In the language of H.R. 3, only pregnancies resulting from “forcible rape” were exempted. The bill would also limit  exemptions among victims of incest to minors only. 

Critics of the bill argued that Republicans were trying to “redefine rape,” and that federal coverage for the abortions of rape and incest victims would be dramatically limited.