Tuesday, April 12, 2011

On Planned Parenthood, O’Donnell, and Beck

So, unless you store your head under a USian rock, you know that Planned Parenthood was, and is, under attack by the right wing here in the US. You also know that the Democrats to an all-to-rare stand on that issue and the EPA. Online, and in the news, there were plenty of well-spoken, well-written testimonies about Planned Parenthood. Out of all of them, I found Lawrence O’Donnell’s piece on The Last Word to be remarkable, and perhaps able to reach both those directly and indirectly concerned with Planned Parenthood.

Blog note: I am an avid (rabid?) watcher of MSNBC. It is on most of the time in our home. I am also someone that often criticizes the station when I feel it gets things wrong, or when it adds to the oppression of some to the benefit of others. I am also one of those never-satisfied liberals that always thinks that we (humans) can and should do better in all things. That the fight to acknowledge each others humanity is ongoing and it is the one fight, above others, that is worth fighting, always. So, potential bias and definite perspective stated, we should move on…

The Last Word piece is here, and you should watch it: “Rewriting Lies on Planned Parenthood.” The original lie came from John Kly, and was definitely worth rewriting. Our host offers up insight on how the echo chamber works, and how it can ruin a person’s perceived integrity. What I noted with great interest was what came next – a reading of a letter from a friend dependent on Planned Parenthood. What was in the letter mirrors the feelings and needs of thousands of women in the US. O’Donnell’s reaction rang true to me and I have great respect for the courage it takes to show those moments of vulnerability. Our culture does not encourage those moments, and actively discourages them from men in particular.

Of course, the piece did not go without some criticism. This is Glenn Beck, and Lawrence O'Donnell’s response to Beck’s response to O’Donnell: “Defending Planned Parenthood.” According to Beck, only “prostitutes” that need “400 abortions” use PP. O’Donnell is able to put that down with ease, and far more grace than I could have mustered, to be sure. Other noteworthy content includes a meta commentary on the nature of commentating on television which would be well worth watching by itself.

Planned Parenthood’s response to Glenn Beck’s hateful claim is here: Planned Parenthood Press Release.

Although I want to dedicate an entry to it shortly, here is my CrowdRise Planned Parenthood fundraiser:  Lizz Winstead’s “Planned Parenthood, I am here for you!” Tour.
I had more to say, but I think I am out of spoons.


  1. Beck's comments were deplorable and irresponsible. I didn't think that I could have less respect for him than I did, but seeing the clip on The Last Word forced me to re-assess that assumption.

  2. The mind just boggles. Rarely has my esteem for one person risen that highly while my esteem for another simultaneously fall (from a low starting elevation).


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