Big Les

My rhetoric is my rampart!

    PAC of lies

    January 10th, 2023

    Cluttering mailboxes across the Commonwealth are political ads for the special election coming up, and one in particular has raised my eyebrow. Planned Parenthood Virginia PAC has launched an attack on Kevin Adams (R), candidate for Virginia state senate using muddied, shotgun-style argumentation compacted into two bullet points:

    1. Adams supports banning abortion and would vote to take away Virginians’ rights to make their own healthcare decisions.
    2. Adams volunteers at a crisis pregnancy center, an anti-choice organization that the American Medical Association called “unethical” due to predatory practices.

    Even if you hate republicans or feel strongly about a woman’s right to choose and support Planned Parenthood for the healthcare they do provide women, you should read on to see how they lie. They lie both subtly and overtly, and they don’t think you’ll catch it, but they condemn themselves by citing their sources, ironically. The overt lie is the more blatant one and easier to articulate, so let’s start there.

    Planned Parenthood Virginia PAC cites an article from the AMA Journal of Ethics co-written by two MD’s who express their concerns about the ethical validity of crisis pregnancy centers (CPC) that aren’t licensed medical clinics. Even though it seems clear the two doctors would support unrestricted access to abortion, their concerns are not about abortion or even the pregnant woman’s health per se, but instead they are more concerned with how these facilities are perceived particularly in “crisis” moments when the expectant mother is considering abortion. This is the ethics about which they speak. But the overt lie is revealed in the AMA disclaimer at the bottom, “The viewpoints expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the AMA.” Planned Parenthood wants you to think otherwise.

    The other lie is a bit more challenging to disentangle, so we’ll take it bit by bit. The language Planned Parenthood Virginia PAC uses in their political attack is argumentative and intentionally conflating. This is not uncommon. All sides do it without regard to the topic, and quite often the attack focuses on the person or organization and not the actual issue.

    • CPC’s are no more anti-choice than Planned Parenthood is anti-life. While a significant portion of Planned Parenthood’s revenue is derived from abortion services, it does provide healthcare for women such as pre-screening for breast cancer and gynecological exams, yet with the loss abortion revenue they may have to close some of their clinics; hence their campaign.
    • Planned Parenthood claims Adams would ban abortion. They reference his website nonspecifically, but it doesn’t take long to find out what Adams actually says under My Platform, “We need to pass laws that respect the rights of the mom and baby, limit late-term abortion by passing Glenn Youngkin’s 15-week legislation, while providing reasonable exceptions to protect the life of the mother or in the instance of rape or incest.” They intentionally misrepresent Adams’ position.
    • Planned Parenthood vaguely intimates that abortion is healthcare. Stay with me. This is what’s called equivocation: speaking with equal voice about two different things.
      1. Healthcare is defined as: efforts made to maintain or restore physical, mental, or emotional well-being especially by trained and licensed professionals. Its aim is to effect remedies to ailments of various sorts. Pregnancy is not an ailment.
      2. Abortion is defined as: the termination of a pregnancy after, accompanied by, resulting in, or closely followed by the death of the embryo or fetus. This definition is partially influenced by the AMA’s inclusion of miscarriages as abortions, but in common usage abortion is understood to be intentional. Planned Parenthood wants you to think freedom in healthcare will be lost.

    Planned Parenthood Virginia PAC insists “we can’t risk anti-abortion extremist Kevin Adams” when Planned Parenthood is the extremist. They are extreme in their overt lies and misrepresentations, and they are extreme in their prejudice against the average voter to discern these falsehoods. Their primary concern is the continuation and further proliferation of abortion under the guise of healthcare. Wherever you stand on the issue, know that people lie to cover up the truth, and they don’t care whom they hurt or kill.

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