Former Baltimore City Health Commissioner and physician Dr. Leana Wen has been named the new president of Planned Parenthood.
Throughout her career she has consistently pushed for efforts to decrease Baltimore’s extremely high teenage pregnancy rate by encouraging "comprehensive sex education" and abortion.
One of her main focuses as Health Commissioner was school-based prevention initiatives. Although sex education programs in schools have not proven to be effective in most of the country, under this initiative Baltimore did see a decrease in teenage pregnancy between 2009 and 2015. Yet this statistic only shows half of the story. While pregnancy rates have decreased, the abortion rate has increased among teenagers under the age of 20.
We find abortion advocates limited in preventative measures they propose to offset teen pregnancy, mainly pushing contraceptives and abortion as family planning methods. Wen’s approach at Planned Parenthood will not differ much from her approach in Baltimore. The focus will be abortion.
Dr. Wen’s recent video announcing her new appointment ran like a campaign advertisement, ignoring the devastating effects of Roe on women's health and suggesting Planned Parenthood provides "healthcare." Wen consistently uses the term "healthcare," in an attempt to hide the fact that abortion is a large percentage of what Planned Parenthood does, and to conflate abortion with their other services.
To avoid this crucial differentiation of services is to imply abortions are as helpful to mothers who do not want their children as adoption referrals. It implies going without an abortion is as detrimental to a woman’s health as going without a breast exam or pap smear. Both notions are emphatically false, yet pounded into the mind of the viewer as the video proceeds.
Her opening statement tells the story of her family immigrating to the United States. She continues praising her parents for their impeccable will and grit on starting a new life in this country.
“We depended on Medicaid and food stamps and Planned Parenthood for our healthcare,” Wen says.
The classic conflation of abortion services as healthcare begins here. She neglects, however, the courage her parents had to embark on the journey to this country with their daughter.
She follows with an anecdote about a mother who died having what is commonly termed a “back-alley” abortion. We have seen both advocates and bureaucrats exaggerate the statistical occurrences of these incidents. Counterarguments to Planned Parenthood are similarly conflated. Opposing “legal abortions” in its logical conclusion would similarly oppose “back-alley” abortions. We condone neither. Back alley murder is as egregious as murder which occurs on a day-lit main street.
Wen accepts the inevitability of women who do not want their children existing, possibly without adequate health care options, as justification to take the life of a child. There is no way one can summon a recollection of a mother dying from an abortion procedure only to say that, if the baby were killed more efficiently, we would still have the mother, without also fundamentally denying the humanity and personhood of the child.
The argument for abortion as a healthcare option is not placed in any type of moral framework which would even attempt to suppose it is one life for another—instead, it is only the life of the mother.
Wen’s view of women’s healthcare is selectively narrow when it comes to alternatives to abortion.
Under her leadership, Baltimore tried to force pro-life pregnancy centers to provide abortion information in the form of signs, brochures, and various abortion literature.
Wen was a defendant in this case, and although it was not heard in court, it was remedied by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in National Institutes of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra, essentially under First Amendment Speech claims.
According to the Archdiocese of Baltimore, over a thousand women utilize such life-oriented free services yearly. Why would one genuinely concerned about the health of women vehemently reject providing holistic healthcare options to women?
The world will see where Wen truly stands October 12th as she leaves her position as Baltimore Health Commissioner and takes on the role as the leader of the nation's leading dispenser of death – Planned Parenthood.