The Planned Parenthood Federation of America recently released its 2014-2015 Annual Report. That report contained information that demonstrates the real problem that Planned Parenthood is encountering across the country.
First, let’s understand that a cross-section of groups oppose Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood (PP) likes to portray its opposition as those that oppose abortion. While it is certainly true that pro-lifers oppose PP – the largest abortion chain in the nation, one that admits in its recent report to ending the lives of about 888 preborn children a day – pro-lifers are just one of PP’s opposition.
Another large group of Planned Parenthood opponents are those that believe the government should not be funding social programs. Planned Parenthood received $553.7 million in taxpayer money last year and showed a bottom-line “income in excess of expenditures” of $58.8 million. It didn’t even use all the money taxpayers gave them. Over the last 20 years, PP has received $6.8 billion in taxpayer funds and reported $1.3 billion in excessive income. It’s no wonder even pro-choice fiscal conservatives are calling for taking all taxpayer funding from Planned Parenthood.
Another group strongly opposed to Planned Parenthood is parents. Planned Parenthood pushes confidential services for minors and supports teens as they go against their parents’ wishes. This was illustrated just recently when actress Jennifer Lawrence told Glamour magazine that she received birth control from Planned Parenthood when she was a teen growing up in a devout Kentucky household.
“My mom was really religious with me when I was young,” Lawrence said. “And I wouldn’t have been able to get birth control if it weren’t for Planned P. I wouldn’t have been able to get condoms and birth control and all these things I needed as a normal teenager who was growing up in a Jesus house.”
There you have the essence of why parents are against Planned Parenthood. It doesn’t matter if the parents are liberal or conservative. It doesn’t even matter if they are “pro-choice.” Parents want to impart their beliefs to their children and resent any organization that presumes to usurp their authority. As a result, they are on the front lines of the effort to stop Planned Parenthood.
The combined results of these three groups focusing on stopping Planned Parenthood is taking its toll on the organization, and this year’s annual report testifies to this fact.
Planned Parenthood starts off the 2014-2015 Annual Report stating that it has 661 centers across the country. In 1995, Planned Parenthood had 938 centers. There is currently much discussion and conjecture about what will happen when Planned Parenthood closes its centers. Where will its patients go? Yet, the fact is that Planned Parenthood has been closing clinics at a rapid rate for years. By its own count, Planned Parenthood has closed 277 centers in the last 20 years. That number includes closing two dozen or more every year for the last eight years.
There is no evidence women’s health care has suffered because of all these Planned Parenthood closures. That’s because, at its roots, Planned Parenthood is not a health care organization. It is a sex shop. Just about all of Planned Parenthood’s services concern girls and women who are engaged in sexual activity. Teens who do not get involved in sex do not provide any income to Planned Parenthood. Those who do get involved in sex provide millions of dollars to the organization. Planned Parenthood has a vested interest in getting young people involved in a sexual lifestyle.
But, Planned Parenthood has a problem. This year’s annual report shows that girls and women are staying away from the organization. PP reports that it had 2,500,000 unique clients last year. That is the lowest number of clients since 1998. It also reported doing 9.5 million services – the lowest number since 2004. Finally, it says it committed 323,999 abortions – the lowest number in seven years.
These fairly dismal numbers have spurred all three groups that oppose Planned Parenthood to increase their activities. It is now becoming clear that Planned Parenthood is vulnerable. The only remaining significant problem is the taxpayer funding of the organization. The fact that government funding increased last year and is now at record highs is motivating pro-lifers, fiscal conservatives and even pro-choice parents to work together to call for an end to the government funding of Planned Parenthood.
We expect the taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood to continue to be a major hot button throughout this next year, and based on this latest report, the future is beginning to look bleak for Planned Parenthood – and that is a good thing.
Jim Sedlak is vice president of American Life League and founder of STOPP International. He has been fighting against Planned Parenthood since 1985 and is generally recognized as being one of the leading experts on the organization. In 1993, he was identified by Planned Parenthood as being one of the “most active” fighters against Planned Parenthood sex education programs.