The left-leaning group openDemocracy, which once referred to the abortion pill as a “revolution for women’s reproductive rights,” has published several recent hit pieces attacking Abortion Pill Reversal (APR) by falsely labeling the protocol as “dangerous” or “unproven,” even referring to women who seek out the treatment as “guinea pigs.”
Despite the group’s obvious support for abortion on demand, there may be another motive for openDemocracy to be on the attack against APR: one of its more recent donors has ties to the U.S. manufacturer of the abortion pill.
The abortion pill (mifepristone) was brought to the U.S. by the eugenics-founded Population Council which later established Danco Laboratories to manufacture the pill. The Population Council was in charge of overseeing clinical trials for the abortion pill and set up a system through which it would also receive royalties from its sales. In 1996, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation also invested $14.2 million into Danco and is now also investing millions in GenBioPro, Inc., an FDA-approved company which began manufacturing a generic version of the abortion pill in 2019. Packard has also funded Gynuity Health Projects, which is currently conducting abortion pill clinical trials and a number of studies with the goal of expanding access to the abortion pill regimen.
In 2020, this same group — the Packard Foundation — gave openDemocracy $300,000 to “[t]o build a new and more inclusive international consortium of investigative journalists focused on reproductive and sexual rights.” This language referring to “reproductive and sexual rights” has long been understood to mean abortion.
Who is openDemocracy?
Online, openDemocracy claims to be “an independent global media organisation” registered in the UK and “wholly owned by the non-profit openDemocracy Foundation for the Advancement of Global Education…” The openDemocracy company claims to “work only with those whose values and objectives are compatible with our own,” while at the same time boasting of transparency and independence:
Our value and reputation as journalists and as a publisher depends on our editorial independence; and transparency about who we work with, who funds us, and who we serve is vital for our mission in the world…We also receive significant levels of funding in grants from trusts and foundations. We work only with those whose values and objectives are compatible with our own; they, of course, support us for the same reason.
However, their financial support does not give them any decisive control over what we publish…
But openDemocracy’s Board chair, Suzanna Taverne, is actually a former Chair at the UK-based abortion chain, Marie Stopes International (recently renamed MSI Reproductive Choices to hide the chain’s eugenics past). In the U.S., openDemocracy’s current editor Teddy Wilson regularly tweets articles published by the pro-abortion blog Rewire, where he is also a staff writer. He has personally referred to APR as “junk science” or “pseudoscience.”
In her piece entitled, “UK women are being ‘used as guinea pigs’ by ‘abortion reversal’ doctors,” writer Nandini Archer claimed, “A US study into APR was cancelled in 2019 after some participants went to hospital with severe haemorrhaging. The lead researcher, Mitchell D Creinin, said it was stopped because ‘It wasn’t safe for me to expose women to this treatment.'” Archer is listed as “an active member of the feminist direct action group Sisters Uncut [who] previously worked with the International Campaign for Women’s Right to Safe Abortion.” In other words, she is blatantly pro-abortion, which might explain how her piece failed to note that study author Mitchell D. Creinin, MD is a consultant for abortion pill manufacturer Danco Laboratories, and has received compensation from them.
That particular study from Creinin was sponsored by groups tied to both abortion and abortion pill investors — the University of California-Davis and the Society of Family Planning (SFP). SFP was founded in 2005 with a generous contribution from the Packard Foundation and is also funded by the Buffett Foundation (billionaire Warren Buffett), a Danco investor. Published by the pro-abortion American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (a.k.a. The Green Journal) the study was the result of a failed clinical trial in which Creinin and his Planned Parenthood collaborator Laura Dalton intended to give participants either progesterone or a placebo. The “study” was terminated between August and September 2019, following the enrollment of just 12 pregnant women after a failed attempt to recruit 40 participants.
While the openDemocracy author descibes APR as an “off-label treatment,” she fails to point out that the abortion pill itself has been used “off-label” by the abortion industry.
openDemocracy’s other support
The George Soros-funded Open Society, a long-time pro-abortion philanthropist, is also a supporter of openDemocracy (2012-2015, 2019). Open Society has boasted support for pro-abortion Media Matters and other media allies which have also attacked pro-life organizations. In 2000, Open Society gave $383,000 to support abortion pill clinical trials.
In 2004, openDemocracy LTD’s website listed the Rockefeller Foundation as a donor which the Foundation continued to support the company years after. The Rockefeller Foundation has long funded eugenics and abortion organizations including the Population Council, which brought the abortion pill to the U.S.
According to the DNA Learning Center at Cold Spring Harbor, the Rockefeller Foundation also provided funds to construct the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute where racist Nazi programs were developed decades ago. The Rockefeller Foundation is also listed as a donor to Gynuity Health Projects.
Early on, openDemocracy’s website showed financial support from the pro-abortion Ford Foundation, which continues support to this day. In 2010, former Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards joined the board of the Ford Foundation and currently serves as a Trustee. The Ford Foundation has for decades promoted progressive policies and abortion ‘rights’, and has also donated millions of dollars to Planned Parenthood, the Population Council, IPAS, Marie Stopes International (MSI), and many other abortion groups.
Hopewell Fund is also listed as an openDemocracy supporter. Live Action News previously detailed a Hopewell project known as Equity Forward, which has targeted pro-life centers and organizations and is financially supporting abortion facilities through an “Abortion Delivery’s Business Sustainability Project,” financed in part by abortion philanthropists William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and (guess who?) the Packard Foundation.
In 2018, the Novo Foundation, which supports International Planned Parenthood and the Population Council, granted the Tides Foundation thousands of dollars for openDemocracy programs as well. Another openDemocracy funder is Wallace Global Fund, which donates to Planned Parenthood, the Guttmacher Institute, IPAS and other abortion organizations.
The Tides Foundation not only directly funds openDemocracy but has funded the Latin abortion chain Fundación Oriéntame, described in 2014 as “a network of abortion resources that could be described as Latin America’s equivalent of Planned Parenthood… helping to create more than 600 clinics in 10 Latin American countries and for reshaping abortion politics across the continent….” Live Action News previously documented how Tides Foundation also funded an international conference on abortion pill expansion along with IBIS, Planned Parenthood, and the National Abortion Federation.
This seemingly endless list of abortion-connected donors shows why the attacks against Abortion Pill Reversal are not motivated by a concern for women or by scientific ethics. They are being launched by those who benefit financially from the sale and expansion of the abortion pill — and that should be enough to question any and all of their spurious claims.
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