Cecile Richards is president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. I’ve not met her. Perhaps one day I’ll have that opportunity. If given the chance to sit across the table from her, there’s no doubt that we’d have our share of differences. For instance, here are just three of what she views as “a year full of noteworthy achievements” as summarized in Planned Parenthood’s Annual Report to Stakeholders:
- We provided medical services to more than three million people and helped prevent an estimated 621,000 unintended pregnancies in the U.S. alone.
- Our activists and supporters helped convince 11 more states to decline federal abstinence-only funding, bringing the total to 26.
- We helped defeat anti-choice legislation and ballot initiatives across the country, including 33 of the 34 abortion ban bills introduced in state legislatures in 2008.
Cecile beams over the efforts by the Planned Parenthood lawyers who successfully fought off “an assault by the anti-choice forces in Kansas” while also “helping keep anti-choice initiatives off the ballot in Georgia and Missouri.” In an email to supporters, Cecile says, “I love my job . . . I am so proud to be a part of an organization that touches so many lives.”
I cannot fathom how anyone would “love” a job that includes aborting hundreds of thousands of babies in just one year. How can Cecile, and those who support Planned Parenthood, not be grieved that so much innocent blood was shed in the name of “choice” this year? Why do we, as a nation, fail to see that every life is a beautiful choice? Where are the tears?
The Psalmist wrote, “Children are a gift from the Lord” (Psalms 127:3), which is why my heart aches to think that these pre-born children never had a chance to run, laugh, play, learn, grow, and make their mark on the world. Looking back over the year, Cecile may take delight in their accomplishments which silenced the voices of so many. I, for one, cannot bring myself to enter into her joy.
More than that, as long as I have breath I will remain firmly on the side of protecting life–the life of the pre-born, those who are born with a handicap, those who might not feel they can keep on living, those who are infirmed, those whose body is fighting a losing battle with cancer, HIV/AIDS, or other life-threatening disease, as well as the elderly who are at the end of their life. Can we not do better as a nation, as a community, to say we want to do all we can to create a culture of life for our children?