Planned Parenthood, an organization that supposedly serves as the defender of a woman’s right to choose, is being exposed as a wholly corrupt body in a recently popularized series of seven videos (with more still to come). Investigations by various groups have turned up more and more and more dirt on Planned Parenthood’s corruption. Florida legislators have launched an investigation into Planned Parenthood, and Tennessee has done the same. The latest video trailer, which was released on Friday, showcases just how dark the content of those videos truly is.
While this news is shocking, what is more terrifying is the way in which the news media has failed to cover this story. Media watchdog News Busters has shown that the fading memory of Cecil the Lion has been given 15 times as much coverage as Planned Parenthood.
Why does a dead animal get covered by every news agency out there, while dead children are swept under the rug? Ideology, that’s why. Ideology which dictates that human life isn’t worth what it used to be.
Traditionally, the west has been enriched with philosophical traditions that place a deep regard for the value of human life. One such tradition is the Judeo-Christian idea of the “imago dei,” the belief that man is made in the image of God. Theologian Ryan Klassen notes that there are several candidates for the meaning of the image of God, including rationality moral choice and immortality. Another comes from Greek philosophers, who knew that there was something unique about mankind which was lacking among animals. Plato held that there were three parts of the soul—appetite, spirit and rational—and that only mankind possesses the rational soul.
However, the last two centuries have seen the rise of competing philosophical views, such as environmentalism–which devalues human life in the interest of emphasizing life in general— and feminism, that declare human life to not have innate value because of some other competing thing that their adherents claim has greater value. The result of this shift in ideology has been a cultural climate that enables groups like Planned Parenthood to do their work–and to ignore the signs that those groups present a real moral problem for society.
The ideology that has enabled Planned Parenthood, however, cannot be hidden as more videos come to the fore. Consider the recorded conversation between Dr. Deborah Nucatola, one of Planned Parenthood’s chief doctors, and the undercover investigators who launched this video expose. Dr. Nucatola discusses how a fetal calvarium, or skull, needs to be preserved during abortions, and how that can be done. A preserved skull is better for research purposes, since it means that a better preserved brain can be harvested for study. She discusses extracting a brain from a dead child in a way that is so chilling, it is beyond clinical: it is inhuman.
Another video shows Planned Parenthood doctors discussing the harvesting of “fetal cadaver” parts, with the nonchalance I might use to discuss searching for an obscure book. Another particularly gruesome video, includes an account from Holly O’Donnell, an ex-procurement technician, of how she helped another tech cut through the head of a living fetus, to extract the brain. National Review puts it like this:
“She [The coworker] gave me the scissors and told me that I had to cut down the middle of the face,” she recalls. “I can’t even describe what that feels like.
How can someone hear these stories and not recoil in horror?
Simple evil is one thing, but ideology is what justifies that evildoing, and makes it something we should admire. Alexsandr Solzhenitsyn noted as much in his Gulag Archipelago, saying that ideology “is what gives evildoing its long-sought justification and gives evildoers the necessary steadfastness and determination.” Though Planned Parenthood’s protectors are still emboldened for the moment, the media will not be able to continue ignoring this story as more videos are released. America will soon be forced to face the hard truths behind what Planned Parenthood has been doing, and not a moment too soon.