Planned Parenthood Under Fire: The nation’s largest abortion provider faces its worse crisis ever
By Jeanne Mancini, Organization Trends, October 2015 (PDF here)
Summary: Whatever your view of abortion, it’s hard not to be appalled by the recent undercover videos of Planned Parenthood personnel casually discussing how they can profit from the body parts it “harvests.” The powerful, politically connected nonprofit enjoys massive government subsidies, as well as invaluable aid from the mainstream media who help it pretend to be what it is not: a broad-spectrum provider of healthcare. Now it faces efforts to end taxpayer subsidies for its lucrative business.
On July 14, 2015, a small nonprofit organization, the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), released a video that marked the beginning of a tidal wave of public opposition to the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The video was part of a much bigger, broader three-year undercover “sting” project detailing a horrific reality: Planned Parenthood harvests and sells baby hearts, lungs, livers, and brains. At press time, 10 such videos had been released by CMP with more expected in the weeks ahead.
The footage raises a number of critical legal questions. Is Planned Parenthood involved in the unlawful activity of harvesting and selling baby parts? Is Planned Parenthood obtaining informed consent agreements from the mothers whose babies’ hearts, lungs, livers, and brains are being obtained? Is Planned Parenthood unlawfully altering abortion procedures to obtain intact baby parts or whole babies? Is Planned Parenthood performing illegal partial-birth abortions to facilitate obtaining those organs?
The CMP videos also focus public attention on Planned Parenthood as a government-subsidized agency and provide an insightful snapshot of problems in the abortion industry. The videos follow previous undercover “sting” projects conducted by the new media group Live Action, founded by Lila Rose, as well as the startling revelations about Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell, now in prison for life, who was convicted of multiple infanticides and accused of gruesome mistreatment of mothers who came to him, including at least one maternal death.
The videos are raising awareness among the public of the truth about Planned Parenthood, yet they are only a small part of the story. For years, a wealth of data and information has shown that Planned Parenthood isn’t a benevolent healthcare provider; see, for example, the April 2012 Organization Trends. I published a background document on Planned Parenthood in 2010 and updated it in 2012 (http://downloads.frc.org/EF/EF12J05.pdf). This essay further updates that information and provides new data, particularly on Planned Parenthood’s management and finances. Most of the material is taken from the group’s publicly available tax forms and annual reports.