Banning Family Planning is Just Bad Business

Denying women access to basic, affordable reproductive services is a blight on the conscience of this nation.

We should be doing anything and everything to mitigate such extreme proliferation of our species, and to encourage women to have children only when they are ready for them and want them. Unwanted pregnancy is painful not just for the mother, but the children. The repercussions are far beyond a simple question of economics. The emotional toll garnered by being an unwanted child is a horrible fate.

I know first hand. My mother, 19, involved with a "very Catholic" man, became pregnant. She wanted an abortion. He was "religiously" opposed despite the fact I never once saw him enter the church of his family. He insisted on marriage and birth. Enter a short-lived marriage made in hell and years of toil, turmoil and therapy. Fortunately for me, we were relatively affluent and my grandparents on both sides were wonderful emotional and financial contributors. Add poverty to this molotov mix, and you can only imagine what my fate might have been.

Personal issues aside, offering easy access to affordable family planning is part of being a responsible regime, no matter which way you stack it. Check out the figures from the Guttmacher Institute for 2008. These numbers are for our nation alone.

The savings a government incurs with family planning versus expenditure just for the birth alone are astounding. Add to that, the lifelong care issue with impoverished women needing federal and state support to scrape by in the circumstances created by unwanted and unplanned pregnancies, and you have a very substantial savings over the long term.

In her article House Family Planning Cuts: Bad Medicine And Bad Economics, Emily Stewart cites the very important fact that Planned Parenthood, by offering so many women contraceptive and family planning resources, they actually prevent 406,000 or more pregnancies that would have wound up in abortion from even occurring in the first place.

It doesn't take a genius to figure out that rallying against the right to family planning resources is not simply a moral issue, but an economic one. We need to take responsibility for allowing women access to the care, the tools and the education they need to decide for themselves what would serve them and their families the best in terms of timing children.

Yet another reason to support Planned Parenthood and all organizations invested in providing family planning resources to the world at large: We need to stop having so many babies. We need to give poor women the education and access to allow them to make the choice to have fewer children in the interest of sustaining the planet and those precious lives that do come along. If you cannot feed yourself, how on earth can you feed a new child?

No woman on earth wants to watch her child or children suffer. Why subject women in many nations to this fate by denying them the rights and education to avoid such trauma? But let's focus on our nation and what we can do here. Let's fund Planned Parenthood and help prevent abortion by installing a system of family planning and contraception that work!