Defunding Planned Parenthood would be detrimental for women across America, especially female college students.
I know, you’re probably sick and tired of hearing about Planned Parenthood, but listen up. This is important.
I consider myself one of the lucky ones. I’m still on my parents’ insurance plan, so getting birth control or any other kind of female-related health service from my gynecologist isn’t that big of a deal cost-wise. But I understand for other female college students, that isn’t the case.
House Speaker Paul Ryan has been a huge part of the face that’s trying to defund Planned Parenthood. This was evident Thursday as he mentioned at the CNN town hall debate he doesn’t want taxpayer funding to go to Planned Parenthood because of the amount of abortions it performs. Ryan also mentioned this funding should instead go to local health centers.
While all of this may seem like a good plan at first, if Planned Parenthood is actually defunded a lot of women will go without birth control or many of the other services it provides like STD testing, pap smears, cervical cancer screenings and breast exams. Say what? Yeah, Planned Parenthood actually does more than abortions.
According to plannedparenthood.org, “one in five women in the U.S. has visited a Planned Parenthood health center at least once in her life.” Besides helping with unwanted pregnancies, Planned Parenthood also provides 270,000 pap smear tests, over 360,000 breast exams, and more than 4.2 millions tests for sexually transmitted infections a year.
Local health centers are great, but requiring birth control coverage may not always be possible depending on your insurance plan. Planned Parenthood makes it possible for a young college student who may be trying to make ends meet get low-cost birth control. Some argue that college students don’t need birth control and should be focusing on their schooling instead of being so sex-crazed, but aren’t college students considered adults?
According to the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals website, methods of birth control can be pricey depending on if you have insurance or not. The pill can be $15 to $50 a month, and the Nexplanon arm implant can be up to $800 without insurance.
Another thing Ryan mentioned at the CNN town hall debate was by funding local health centers instead of Planned Parenthood, there will be fewer controversies. Controversies can follow anyone or any place. So, let’s stop treating Planned Parenthood as just a controversy surrounding where their federal funding is going to.
We can sit here and look at different statistics about Planned Parenthood, not knowing whether its services are 94 percent abortion services or 3 percent are abortion services. But we can’t deny that Planned Parenthood has provided a lot for women and taking away its funding doesn’t make sense. Planned Parenthood has provided educational programs for adolescents and provides a lot more than just preventing unwanted pregnancies.
Even though I don’t personally rely on Planned Parenthood, when I have children I want them to know they have a place to turn to, besides myself, if they’re scared.
If you don’t rely on Planned Parenthood for health services or if you are anti-abortion, then that’s fine. But someone you know or love may be relying on it. Don’t sit back; speak up. The U.S. House of Representatives will vote on this Friday, so make calls to your congressional representatives.