As Americans we live in a nation founded on the idea that our rights and freedoms are God-given and that government’s fundamental role is to protect them. But our government today falls tragically short of this duty by failing to protect the rights of the most defenseless in our society: unborn children.
Each year, over half a billion dollars in taxpayer money is given to Planned Parenthood, an organization responsible for over 300,000 abortions each year. While the provision of taxpayer money to such an organization has drawn its share of criticism over the years, the most recent revelations of Planned Parenthood’s actions reveal a new low for the organization.
Millions of Americans, myself included, have been outraged by the recently released videos showing Planned Parenthood officials matter of factly describing the harvesting and sale of limbs and organs from unborn babies in graphic detail and with a callous and cruel disregard for human life. The videos also raise serious questions about potentially criminal and unethical practices at Planned Parenthood clinics. The videos clearly indicate that these practices are not contained, but endemic to the organization.
It should be noted that Planned Parenthood’s callousness does not extend merely to the unborn. The videos also reveal that Planned Parenthood views the women that they purport to serve as nothing more than profit centers for their macabre business. One of the videos shows a senior Planned Parenthood official speaking casually about the tactics she employs in order to deceive patients so that their unborn children can be better utilized for organ and limb harvesting. This is a violation of the rights of their patients.
The videos are tough to watch and tough to fathom, especially for parents. It’s not something any of us want to have to discuss. And yet like many other uncomfortable topics confronting our nation, we have an obligation to not avert our eyes.
There is more than enough evidence to push forward with a serious and independent investigation into Planned Parenthood and its practices, like the one Governor Rick Scott has called for in our home state of Florida. I have asked the Secretary of Health and Human Services to do, but am not holding my breath for the Obama Administration to act. Congress should bring Planned Parenthood’s senior officials to testify under oath before the American people.
There can be no denying that Planned Parenthood is a morally bankrupt organization. Americans of conscience might disagree on the legality of abortion. It is a contentious issue that elicits deep passions. But as a country, we should at least be able to find common ground on acknowledging and respecting the humanity and basic dignity of both the mother and the unborn child. It is clear from the videos that Planned Parenthood long ago stopped acknowledging either. At Planned Parenthood, women are treated as paying clients, not patients. Unborn children are treated as cells and tissues, not human beings. The organs and limbs of babies are treated as commodities, for sale to the highest bidder on an open market. And taxpayers are forced to fund this.
There are countless organizations in America that provide health care, including reproductive health care, to women in need. None of them receive the undeserved political protection and taxpayer funding from the federal government that Planned Parenthood has enjoyed for decades. A purported health care organization that has allowed itself to become this callous and dismissive of the human dignity of their patients and unborn life cannot be redeemed. We must defund Planned Parenthood and make sure that taxpayer dollars are never spent on abortions or organizations that demonstrate such a callous disregard for basic human dignity.
America is the freest and most powerful nation on earth, and we have done more to advance the rights of all human beings in our brief history than any society before or since. The Planned Parenthood videos, and the behavior and culture they reveal, are anathema to our very identity as a nation and run counter to the great sacrifices generations of Americans have made in the defense of human dignity here and abroad. We cannot fulfill our promise as a nation by simply turning the other way when we are confronted with difficult realities.Planned Parenthood should never receive another dime from American taxpayers.
LifeNews Note: This exclusive column is written by Senator Marco Rubio, a pro-life Florida Republican and presidential candidate.