This afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to ban federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
Last Saturday, I cried in the lobby of the Elizabeth Blackwell Health Center, one of the Greater Philadelphia area’s 20 Planned Parenthood locations.
My tears of relief came last weekend when an employee told me my birth control would cost only $36 a month (instead of the $87 I’d been paying out of pocket for the last year when I switched insurance plans after a job transition). For me, this savings is a huge amount of money.
But that kind of care could be eliminated if this legislation passes through the Senate and is not vetoed by President Obama.
To me, that is horrifying and the reasons why have nothing to do with abortion, though if you listen to some Republican pro-Lifers, you’d think that’s all Planned Parenthood does.
I have never had an abortion, but for almost 10 years — more than a third of my life — I’ve been going to Planned Parenthood.
Depending on my financial situations, I’ve gone for a variety of treatments— for things like birth control, but also for basic health exams and biopsies for cervical dysplasia.
Each year, 25,000 Philadelphians receive preventative care — read: not abortions — at Planned Parenthood. These people are like me; they’re looking to receive medical care for a realistic price. To take that option away is not just unfair, it’s downright unethical.
Planned Parenthood has drafted a petition that phrases my anger more articulately than I can muster through my seething right now:
How could you?
How could you betray millions of women — and men, and teens — who rely on Planned Parenthood for basic health care?
How could you condemn countless women in this country to undiagnosed cancer, unintended pregnancies, and untreated illnesses?
Your vote was not only against those who seek care at Planned Parenthood health centers, but against every one of us who has ever sought care there, and against every one of us who knows that when we are healthy, when we are in charge of our lives, we thrive.
It was a vote against me.
If you feel similarly, you can sign the petition here.