by Steven Ertelt
November 8, 2004
Kansas City, MO (LifeNews.com) — Another Girl Scout group is under fire for its association with Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion business. This time, a Catholic woman in Kansas City is concerned that two local scout groups allowed girls to earn badges by listening to a Planned Parenthood speaker.
Angie Winston, who heads up the pro-life committee at St. Andrew the Apostle church, told KMBC-TV that she "would like to see every Catholic troop in the nation pull out of the Girl Scouts" because of the latest controversy.
Winston says the visit from the Planned Parenthood representatives was wrong because the organization performs and promotes abortion.
But local Girl Scout representative Mindy McDermott says Winston, a mother of six, is wrong in assuming that the Planned Parenthood speaker discussed abortion.
"We do not have any programs that deal with abortion or birth control," said McDermott told KMBC.
McDermott said two local Girl Scout troops contacted the abortion business on their own last year and invited speakers to come to discuss dating issues. She insists that parents of all of the scouts who attended were informed of the event beforehand.
"Any program that we do, we get parent permission slips. Parents do have a right to know and an obligation to decide if this activity is good for their daughter," McDermott told the television station.
But, Winston told KMBC that Scout leaders should have found out more about Planned Parenthood before inviting the speakers.
"You just don’t put your kids in an organization without checking it out and fully, 100 percent, believing in everything that that organization supports," Winston said.
Part of the debate revolves around the meeting location of the Scout troops. Winston says she doesn’t want the scouts meeting at the church any longer because of the speakers, and the head pastor of the church apparently agrees with her.
In Texas, numerous Girl Scout troops resigned from one regional council because of its decade-long sponsorship of Planned Parenthood events.
After a local pro-life group called for a boycott of Girl Scout cookie sales in the area, the controversy entered the national spotlight. Ultimately, the Girl Scout council announced it had severed ties with the abortion business.
Meanwhile, national Girl Scout CEO Kathy Cloninger stated that Girl Scouts partner with many groups, including Planned Parenthood, during an interview on NBC’s "Today" show in March.