Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I keep trying to like Texas...

as I know that not everybody there loves Rick Perry and George W. Bush, nor do they all want to get rid of art, hate illegals or eradicate women's rights.

But then, there are people like Rick Perry.

And he's the frickin' governor.

And he's running for president.

I heard this story this morning on NPR this morning and I really didn't need to deal with it. I really did not need to hear that he is cutting funding for women's clinics that provide contraception, counseling and other medical treatment (pap smears, diabetes testing, thyroid testing, annual physicals, etc) for women and girls while not even providing abortions. But the fact that they recommend abortion providers to women and girls who ask, suddenly is losing them their funding.

In the meantime, the money that they are losing is not going to help out with anything useful, like health care, infrastructure, or job creation. It is going to "Crisis Pregnancy Centers", those places that are made to look like women's health clinics, but are actually staffed by Pro-Life activists. They offer no health education, no medical services and no contraception. They offer sonograms and counseling about adoption and keeping your baby. Thing is, these "centers" most likely will not take state money and, due to their deceptive advertising, they primarily get calls about abortion services - so this money is going where? Only 1%-2% of the girls who come in to their centers end up keeping the child or giving it up for adoption, yet, at the family planning clinic, you can hear a story like this:

"For hundreds of thousands of Texas women and teens between the ages of 13 and 50, the 71 family planning clinics in the state serve as their gateway to health care, and for many of those women, visiting the clinics is the only time they see a nurse practitioner or a doctor.

Rosalinda Roman, 19, discovered the People's Clinic in East Austin after she got pregnant at age 16 and gave birth to a boy. Now, she comes to the clinic every three months to get her comprehensive well-woman exam and her contraceptive shot.

"I come here and I do my annual physical here. I also get birth control here [and] Depo shot," Roman says. "I don't know what I would do with a second child right now."

With the encouragement of staff at the clinic, Roman has gone back to school and is two months away from becoming a medical technician."

In the meantime, Texas spends more on teen pregnancy than any other state: "The budget cuts to family planning clinics won't in the end save Texas money. The state estimates nearly 300,000 women will lose access to family planning services, resulting in roughly 20,000 additional unplanned births. Texas already spends $1.3 billion [that's billion with a "B" folks] on teen pregnancies — more than any other state."

And somehow that's okay for the state budget?

I would love to suggest writing to Gov. Perry and the Texas legislature, but this is a period of time where I cannot guarantee that they would be listening. Still it can't hurt either...


Peace --Alex


Post a Comment

<< Home