The purpose of our letter is to respond to your recent comments on the steps of the Ohio Statehouse. Based on these comments, it is clear to us that you have been misinformed by the abortion industry.
With all due respect - the respect that each individual human being deserves - we want to offer correction to the unfortunate and derogatory comments you offered regarding the Ohio House of Representatives' action to advance a measure to provide much needed funding to community health centers and local departments of health.
As you speak on behalf of the largest abortion provider in the country, we are compelled to respond to your comments that were not only blatantly slanderous, but utterly false.
First, you have claimed that this measure is "morally wrong." Before delving too deep into the issue, we want to provide you a simple reminder about the moral beliefs held by the people of our state.
Over half of the state of Ohio is opposed to abortion in some form or another. Consistent with the majority that wants to reduce or end abortion, the pro-life movement and this General Assembly enacted seven measures to reduce the number of abortion. Furthermore, all of these measures were enacted in 2011, following a year that revealed the lowest number of reported abortions in Ohio's history. This is legislative action responding to the wishes of the people.
We acknowledge that these statewide statistics may prove to be too broad for your liking, given that they refer to the entire state. Hence, let me provide to you the stark and unfortunate abortion statistics of your senatorial district. According to the most recent state abortion report, there were over 5,000 abortions in your district alone.
Secondly, you stated that "this [legislation] will especially hurt poor women in rural parts of the state with limited access to preventative health care." Before you make lofty claims about the needs of 11 million people, we suggest that you look at the facts about Planned Parenthood in Ohio.
What about poor women? The pro-life movement is more than open to the discussion about poverty and funding. With a net worth of over one billion dollars, Planned Parenthood serves as the epicenter of what has become a massive abortion industry. If Planned Parenthood truly holds that abortion is fundamental to women's healthcare, then why do they charge these poor, uninsured and underinsured women hundreds of dollars for an abortion procedure?
What about rural women? There are 32 Planned Parenthood clinics in the state of Ohio, 29 of which offer family planning services. If you were to plot these on a map, it would almost exactly mirror a map of the population density of our state. Planned Parenthood is not the hub of care for rural women in Ohio. It is disingenuous and irresponsible to argue for the continuation of funds to Planned Parenthood on the grounds that rural women of the entire state of Ohio depend upon the services of a few Planned Parenthood clinics located in "rural" areas of the State. Ohio Right to Life is promoting legislation to prioritize public funds to those approximately 290 alternatives to Planned Parenthood, providing women with roughly nine times the number of Planned Parenthood locations.
You have also said that this legislation is "an unconscionable assault on the rights of women to access the critical services that they cannot get anywhere else and that they cannot afford."Again, in place of reiterating the 290 alternatives to Planned Parenthood, perhaps you would prefer that we focus only on your region: There are five Planned Parenthood clinics in Cuyahoga County (none of which provide mammograms and prenatal care) and there are 13 community health centers (10 of which provide mammograms and prenatal care).
As for the innumerable amount of times that you have claimed that the move to reduce abortion is a "war on women", let me remind you that abortion is not on the side of the women. Ohio Right to Life is pro-life and pro-woman. Planned Parenthood has been exposed by misreporting, underreporting and completely failing to report instances of abusive activity on the women they serve. More simply, roughly half of aborted children are baby girls; that is the real war on women.
This legislation does not take healthcare away from women in our state; it does not reduce family planning funding for the state of Ohio. Its intent is to keep taxpayer money out of the pockets of the abortion industry. We hope you will join us in our continued efforts to defend the rights of Ohio's women and children.