Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Young Mother Asks, "Are We Still Stuck in 1916?"

My wife's cousin lives in Idaho and she sent us and everyone else on her mailing list this letter.  With her full permission, I've posted her letter.  Shelley had an up close and personal view of the war on Planned Parenthood in action.  She also attached an excellent article about the history of Planned Parenthood including some interesting details about the life of Cecile Richards the current president of Planned Parenthood: "Birthright, What's Next for Planned Parenthood"  by Jill Lepore. 
Good morning all,

I feel I can not be silent any longer on this issue. Feel free to delete/ignore this e-mail or forward on as you like. I've blind CC'ed everyone so our senators and representatives can't put you on their mailing lists.

Please find attached a very interesting and poignant article from this week's New Yorker on the history of family planning and Planned Parenthood. This article came to my attention yesterday when I heard Jill Lepore (the author) interviewed on NPR.

This e-mail is about women's rights, human rights, really, and of the now partisan issue of abortion. Who cares if you're pro-life or pro-choice? This is about OUR rights. A little background - I am a married mother of one 18 month old, an educated (mechanical engineer), middle class 35-year old woman and native Boisean. I have never been put in, or placed myself in, the kind of situation where I've had to BE pro-choice or pro-life. HOWEVER, I have always appreciated the affordable/free health care Planned Parenthood (including the university health clinic!) and similar clinics provides to all people, women AND men - and am tremendously puzzled by our government's pre-occupation with putting Planned Parenthood out of business. Incredible!

A little more background - my company recently turned down a project for a Planned Parenthood hospital because 3 male employees (of 35 total) were extremely against P.P. This came to my attention because one employee (of the three) pulled me aside and asked me "if I had heard the news? We got rid of Planned Parenthood!" (I had missed the previous day's staff meeting when this was brought up by our principals). When I exclaimed "What are you talking about?!" He went on to say "You're not FOR that are you?" (Meaning abortion). I found out later, after taking my boss aside in his office, and finding out the real story, that this particular employee had even gone to the extreme of saying he "would work for free for the amount of profit we would make on the project"....or something along those lines. (This employee is a white middle-aged male, native Idahoan, high school educated, and extremely religious.) But I digress. My employer opted out of the project because, as he put it, "the profit wasn't worth the headache these individuals [employees] were going to cause us." This is typical. The rest of us just said, "no, we don't have a problem with it", instead of shouting from our soapboxes "No, WE DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM WITH IT, AND IF YOU DON'T TAKE IT [the project] WE'RE GOING TO QUIT."

Is that what's wrong with this issue? Are the educated, rational people also the quiet, reflective people who say we'll just let you guys hash it out?...I know that's how I've always been regarding politics. Well, here I am, not quiet any longer!

My intent is not to offend anyone, nor impose my beliefs on others; however we must increase awareness and knowledge on this issue. If you take nothing else from this e-mail, please just take a look at the very well researched article attached. I wish I could put down my words as well as Lepore.

Are we still stuck in 1916?

Shelley Weatherby, PE
November 10, 2011
Planned Parenthood, Homepage

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