Vox is a liberal website whose calling card is explaining the news, but a disturbing belief slipped out on Feb. 3 from one of its head writers as she discussed the effects of Planned Parenthood’s defunding in Texas: More babies being born is a bad thing.
The Vox piece does not even imply this. It repeatedly stresses the issue of new babies, and even in its title makes issue of the fact that when Texas blocked abortion providers from the state-run Women’s Health Program (WHP), which provides low-income Texas women with family planning services, Texas women “had more babies.” Whether one supports access to birth control, or even abortion access, the rest of the article paints a picture of the intentions of many abortion advocates that is chilling.
Vox author Sarah Kliff, a former Washington Post reporter known for her biased reporting on abortion, writes of limited birth control in Texas, “Fewer women filled birth control prescriptions—and more low-income women had babies.”
There is no arguing that the way the sentence is written, Kliff regards more babies as a negative result. But the fact that it is especially distressing to her that these women were low-income is creepy. Members of the pro-choice movement often consider themselves champions of the poor, yet some are extremely eager to prevent poor people from having children.
If Kliff’s phrasing at first seems unfortunate or, less charitably, a Freudian slip, a complete reading of the piece clarifies that she indeed finds it unfortunate that more poor women are having babies. A subtitle in her article laments “More women on Medicaid had babies” following the Planned Parenthood cuts. This is directly followed by a statement that “Less access to birth control correlated with an uptick in births among certain Texas patients” — as if births are an undesirable disease.
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The article’s final subtitle, meant to reinforce the conclusion, reads, “The story here is consistent: Defunding Planned Parenthood means less birth control, more births.” Kliff explains the “risk” of cutting public funding for Planned Parenthood is that “births can increase as a result.”
While many abortion advocates regard the label “pro-life” as a propaganda term, their case for that position weakens when they regard the creation of certain lives as especially undesirable. This reality is supported by the fact that over three-quarters of Planned Parenthood abortion facilities are strategically placed in low-income minority neighborhoods, and the very founder of Planned Parenthood herself, Margaret Sanger, made it a goal to control populations she found undesirable by her promotion of birth control and sterilization.
Intelligent people of various viewpoints can thoughtfully debate how best to prevent unplanned pregnancies and provide health care. But when the main argument against a changed law is that more poor people will be born, it darkens the pro-abortion position in an often ignored and evil way.