Fight over Indiana parental consent law proves Planned Parenthood is not a friend to parents

sexual abuse, teen, abortion, late-term abortion, abortion counseling

When it comes to protecting children and teens, the abortion industry has a dismal track record.

Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the U.S., has been caught on tape expressing willingness to aid and abet sex traffickers, coaching minors to experiment with porn and BDSM, covering up the sexual abuse of minors, and giving inaccurate information to women seeking abortions. Planned Parenthood commits nearly 330,000 abortions each year. So why, then, would we ever trust that Planned Parenthood has benevolent, non profit-seeking motives when it comes to minors and abortion?

For these reasons, it’s beyond frustrating that a new Indiana law meant to protect teens in vulnerable, unplanned pregnancy situations is being painted as a law “targeting” minors by news outlets like USA Today. And Planned Parenthood, which opposes parental consent and informed consent laws, is presented as the champion and defender of women’s rights (emphasis added):

Current Indiana law dictates that girls under the age of 18 must have parental consent to obtain an abortion, or they must petition the court to waive that consent. Senate Enrolled Act 404, signed by Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb in April, would allow the judge in that case to decide whether or not it is in that minor’s best interest to tell her parents before the procedure

While the bill was criticized by some as another hurdle to a woman’s right to choose, Holcomb said at the time that he saw the bill as a “parental rights issue and responsibility and common sense.”

The bill was set to go into effect July 1. The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed a lawsuit against the state on behalf of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky (PPINK) in May, claiming the act “imposes new burdens on a young woman’s access to abortion and on her health care providers, in violation of often reaffirmed constitutional rights.”

Women under 18 can’t cast votes in an election and in most states, they can’t even get tattoos or piercings without parental consent. In light of this, it should be common sense that undergoing a chemical or surgical procedure (one that ends a distinct human being’s life, no less) is something that should require that same parental consent.

On June 28th, the Associated Press reported:

U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker wrote in approving a temporary injunction that “when it comes to our children, while parents or others entrusted with their care and wellbeing have the lawful and moral obligation always to act in their best interests, children are not bereft of separate identities, interests, and legal standing.”

Notifying parents when their daughter is about to undergo a procedure riddled with potential complications is what would be “act[ing] in [the child’s] best interest.”

The key word here in the judge’s statement is “children.” These are children we’re talking about, as the judge admitted.

What does all of this mean for parents? It means that Planned Parenthood believes that children should be able to have abortions, without their parents’ knowledge or consent.

According to the AP, attorneys for the state “argued that they in part further the state’s interest ‘in protecting pregnant minors’ and encouraging parental involvement in their minor children’s decision to have an abortion.” But the plaintiffs (Planned Parenthood, remember) don’t see this as a parental rights issue but as a “due process” issue.

The current state law requires “girls younger than 18 [to] either get their parents’ consent to have an abortion or seek permission from a judge through the so-called ‘judicial bypass’ process,” and her parents are not notified. The AP notes what the new law would change:

… [T]he new law would require the judge considering that request to also weigh whether the girl’s parents should receive notification of her pregnancy and her efforts to obtain an abortion, regardless of the decision on the abortion itself. It requires that the parents be notified unless the judge determines it would not be in the minor’s best interest for the parents to know – even if the court finds the minor is mature enough to make a decision independently on whether to have an abortion.

Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky CEO Betty Cockrum objects to this, of course, claiming the law “will have a chilling effect on teenagers already dealing with a difficult situation.” Are we really supposed to believe that Planned Parenthood cares more about teenagers’ wellbeing than their parents do? Shouldn’t teenagers have the help and support of their parents in all “difficult situations,” Ms. Cockrum?

Planned Parenthood also objects to “a new provision that adds a procedure physicians must follow to verify the ‘identity and relationship’ between the minor seeking an abortion and parent or adult providing consent.'” Hmm… I wonder why this sort of thing might be deemed necessary. Could it be because without this provision, any predatory older male could bring his victim to Planned Parenthood for an abortion, sign a consent form pretending to be the child’s guardian, and then walk out again after the abortion, free to continue his abuse?

Sadly, that scenario isn’t just hypothetical; it certainly wasn’t for the women harmed by these sexual predators.

Here’s another kicker — the AP says the new law “prevents anyone from aiding an unemancipated minor who is seeking abortion,” which would “violate[] the First Amendment because it will prohibit Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky from advising those minors ‘that they can travel to other states to obtain their abortions.'”

What? You mean Planned Parenthood wants to be able to show children how to skirt the laws in their state, and this new Indiana law would prevent them from doing that? Hmm…

And since when is the abortion industry worried about First Amendment speech? We haven’t seen that same concern for those seeking to force pro-life pregnancy centers into speech promoting how to get abortion services. Why isn’t the ACLU clamoring to help pregnancy centers to defend their First Amendment rights?

Probably because the abortion industry and its allies don’t really care about defending free speech with which they disagree, and they don’t care about the vulnerable children whom the state of Indiana (or any other state) is seeking to protect.

No, Planned Parenthood doesn’t “care, no matter what.” Planned Parenthood profits from the crisis pregnancies of women and children — almost 900 times a day. And we shouldn’t trust them with our children’s safety.

Take note, parents: Planned Parenthood is not your friend.

Editor’s Note: All op-eds are the opinion of the writer, and not necessarily the official position of Live Action.

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