Alexander Sanger to be biologically pro-life, one must be politically pro-choice
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Bye-Bye Gag Rule — Hello Family Planning Funding Increases
As expected, on January 23, 2009, President Obama rescinded, by Executive order, the Mexico City Policy/Global Gag Rule and announced that he would ask Congress to fund the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), which has been denied US funding for the past eight years.

The President said in his written remarks, "For the past eight years, they have undermined efforts to promote safe and effective voluntary family planning in developing countries...For these reasons, it is right for us to rescind this policy and restore critical efforts to protect and empower women and promote global economic development."

The President added, "For too long, international family planning assistance has been used as a political wedge issue, the subject of a back and forth debate that has served only to divide us. I have no desire to continue this stale and fruitless debate."

Alas, politics being what it is, the stale and fruitless debate on this issue flared up almost immediately, and opponents brought motions before the Congress to overturn the President’s repeal of the Global Gag Rule. All these motions failed by wide margins, wide enough so that another proposed bill, which would codify the end of the Global Gag Rule and prevent its re-issuance by future Presidents, is almost certain to pass. That said, politically-motivated future administrators of United States Agency for International Development (USAID) could simply refuse to fund IPPF projects.

As for money for family planning, well, no surprise, given the U.S. financial crisis, there is none — not this fiscal year anyway. Even in the future, there will be little new money for Latin America and the Caribbean. The Western Hemisphere is not high on the list for U.S. foreign aid — the priorities being in Africa and Asia. There is a proposal before Congress from a coalition of international agencies, including IPPF, to increase U.S. funding for family planning to $1 billion a year from its current level, which is about half that amount.

In response to our proposal, on June 17, 2009, a House Appropriations Subcommittee approved $648 million for family planning programs in the 2010 fiscal year appropriations bill, including $588 million for USAID programs and a $60 million contribution to the UN Population Fund.

If enacted, this appropriation would represent a 19 percent increase over the 2009 fiscal year allotment of $545 million. It also marks a 40 percent increase in funding over the past two years.

Progress!
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George Tiller

In August 2004 I journeyed to Kansas City to do a benefit with George Tiller to raise funds for his political action committee, ProKanDo.

His ever present opponents knew where we were and circled the house with a truck carrying large photographs of fetuses.

About fifty brave supporters gathered. I spoke about the importance of being politically strong and giving backbone to our elected representatives.

George then spoke. He roared, "Tiller, George, First Lieutenant, reporting for duty!" George told of his days as a Navy Surgeon and, when his parents were killed in a plane accident, that he was discharged from the navy to take over his father's solo medical practice. His patients soon let him know that his father had performed abortions and pleaded with him to continue. George realized how necessary safe and legal abortion was once he heard of a patient dying from an illegal abortion. So, George continued his father's practice.

His clinic brochure said on the cover: "Kindness, Courtesy, Justice, Love, Respect." George said, "Women and families are intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, and ethically competent to struggle with complex health issues — including abortion — and come to decisions that are appropriate for themselves."

George was a hero in our Cause, but especially to all the women he helped over the years. He will be missed.

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George Tiller

In August 2004 I journeyed to Kansas City to do a benefit with George Tiller to raise funds for his political action committee, ProKanDo.

His ever present opponents knew where we were and circled the house with a truck carrying large photographs of fetuses.

About fifty brave supporters gathered. I spoke about the importance of being politically strong and giving backbone to our elected representatives.

George then spoke. He roared, "Tiller, George, First Lieutenant, reporting for duty!" George told of his days as a Navy Surgeon and, when his parents were killed in a plane accident, that he was discharged from the navy to take over his father's solo medical practice. His patients soon let him know that his father had performed abortions and pleaded with him to continue. George realized how necessary safe and legal abortion was once he heard of a patient dying from an illegal abortion. So, George continued his father's practice.

His clinic brochure said on the cover: "Kindness, Courtesy, Justice, Love, Respect." George said, "Women and families are intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, and ethically competent to struggle with complex health issues — including abortion — and come to decisions that are appropriate for themselves."

George was a hero in our Cause, but especially to all the women he helped over the years. He will be missed.

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Alexander Sanger
Alexander C. Sanger, the grandson of Margaret Sanger, who founded the birth control movement over eighty years ago, is currently Chair of the International Planned Parenthood Council.
Mr. Sanger previously served as the President of Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC) and its international arm, The Margaret Sanger Center International (MSCI) for ten years from 1991 - 2000.

Mr. Sanger speaks around the country and the world and has served as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Population Fund.

Beyond Choice
Beyond Choice
The new book by Alexander Sanger published by PublicAffairs


Purchase from Amazon.com

Click here for full book information

With reproductive freedom in jeopardy, Alexander Sanger, grandson of renowned family planning advocate Margaret Sanger and a longtime leader in the reproductive rights movement, has taken an urgent, fresh look at the pro-choice position—and even the pro-life position—and finds them necessary, but insufficient. In Beyond Choice he offers the first major re-thinking of these positions in thirty years.

“Well researched and readable, Beyond Choice should be required reading for both pro-choice and pro-life supporters.”
—Governor Christine Todd Whitman

»

» Much more on Beyond Choice, including an excerpt, discussion guides, reviews
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External Links
» Eugenics, Race, and Margaret sanger Revisited: Reproductive Freedom for All?
Hypatia, Indiana University Press
Recent Press
» Abortion in the Spotlight [PDF]
Tina Morlock, Oklahoma City Pioneer

» Advocate: Abortion does involve morality
Paul Swiech, The Pantagraph

» Planned Parenthood founder: Republican Party is pro-choice
Elaine Hopkins, The Journal Star

» Women's Studies seminar covers controversial topic
Jamie Smith, The Daily Vidette

» Luncheon promotes teen responsibility
Dahlia Weinstein, Rocky Mountain News
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External Links
» International Planned Parenthood Federation/Western Hemisphere Region

» UN Goodwill Ambassadors

» The Margaret Sanger Papers Project, NYU History Dept.

» When Sex Counts: Making Babies and Making Law, by Sherry Colb