One of the favorite memes of anti-abortion activists is that Planned Parenthood secretly exists as a means of population control, supported by a Democratic party who hates large families. Often, they cite founder Margaret Sanger’s interest in the eugenics movement nearly a century ago, and a current proliferation of clinics located in highly dense, urban areas as a sign that the organization nefariously wants to curb the people’s means of reproducing.
Now, former Planned Parenthood worker and current anti-choice darling Abby Johnson has unveiled the secret “population control” blueprint she claims that the reproductive health centers have been in cahoots with for decades. Referred to as the “Jaffe Memo,” it’s an action plan of policy bullet points that Frederick S. Jaffe, vice president of Planned Parenthood, wrote 50 years ago in response to an administration question about how to dissuade worldwide overpopulation. “What is in the memo as a ‘solution’ to overpopulation is astonishing,” Johnson writes. “And, I’m sorry to say, it looks like the Jaffe memo is starting to show its face in our culture.”
And for once, I agree with Johnson. After all, here are just a few of the suggestions the memo offers:
Reduce/eliminate paid maternity leave or benefits;
Reduce/eliminate children’s or family allowances;
Eliminate welfare payments after first 2 children;
Require women to work and provide few child care facilities;
Limit/eliminate public-financed medical care, scholarships, housing, loans and subsidies to families with more than N children
Housing policies – discouragement of private home ownership, stop awarding public housing based on family size;
There’s just one slight problem when you start to look at the memo more closely. Of those policies that have been “showing its face” so far, the ones that actually stop births — more access to contraception, more access to abortion, improving maternal health with a focus on family planning — have all been fought by the GOP, who are claiming the Democrats are anti-family. But for those are becoming a part of the United States culture — an end to maternity leave, reducing welfare and social safety net programs, “forcing” women into the workforce by providing them with no other way to successfully support their children — are all a part of the Republican agenda.
Are Democrats trying to “control” the population? Maybe a little, and at the same time ensure each child can be provided for. Meanwhile, the Republican party seems to want all of the babies, but none of the costs that go with them.
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