Abortion giant Planned Parenthood is lashing out at the Pope, after he’s repeatedly spoken up for the right to life of the unborn during his visit to the United States.
“Despite Pope Francis’ progressive stance on climate change and economic equity, he has taken a back seat when it comes to reproductive health and women’s rights,” said Alexander Sanger, the grandson of eugenicist Margaret Sanger, and board member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation. He’s accusing the Pope of limiting women’s rights and hampering “women’s health.”
“The Pope and the Catholic Church must acknowledge the fact that 99 percent of Catholic women use contraception and have abortions at the same rate as other women. His pursuit to stifle contraception access reduces women to basic purveyors of biological materials and denies them the right to plan their own families,” Sanger said in a statement Friday.
In his address before the United Nations General Assembly Friday, Pope Francis condemned “the marketing of human organs and tissues,” a phrase that sounds remarkably similar to accusations against Planned Parenthood, after a series of undercover videos revealed that the organization was involved in the harvesting and sale of the body parts and organs of aborted fetuses.
The Pope also asserted the sacredness of every human life, including that of the unborn. A “fight against exclusion,” the Pope said demands “absolute respect for life in all its stages and dimensions.”
Building a common home of all men and women must rise on “the foundations of a right understanding of universal fraternity and respect for the sacredness of every human life,” Pope Francis said, which includes “the unborn.”
This “respect for the sacredness of every human life,” of every man and every woman, means defending “those considered disposable,” the Pope said.
The papal address to the United Nations followed on the heels of a speech given by the Pope before a joint session of the U.S. Congress on Thursday, in which Francis pointed to the Golden Rule, saying it was a “yardstick” that “reminds us of our responsibility to protect and defend human life at every stage of its development.”
The Pope went on to assert that “every life is sacred” and that “every human person is endowed with an inalienable dignity.”
Soon after the Pope’s address had ended, President Obama vowed to veto a bill that would defund Planned Parenthood, saying it would “disproportionately impact low-income individuals,” and he demanded a new government funding bill free of “ideological provisions that are intended to advance a narrow political agenda.”
Pope Francis has been a vocal critic of the abortion industry, which he has compared to the Italian Mafia. He has also denounced the lie “that supporting abortion somehow helps women,” calling it a “false compassion.”
During the last year, the Pope has hammered home a pro-life message in address after address, calling abortion a “scourge” on society and insisting that “a just society recognizes the primacy of the right to life from conception to natural death.”
After Senators voted down a bill to defund Planned Parenthood just hours after welcoming Pope Francis to speak in their chambers, the Rev. Franklin Graham called them out for their “hypocrisy.”
“The hypocrisy of our Senate never ceases to amaze me,” Graham said on his Facebook page.
“They welcomed Pope Francis into their chambers with a standing ovation and then within hours they voted down the bill to defund Planned Parenthood, an organization that not only murders innocent children in their mothers’ wombs but is also guilty of selling body parts from these babies.”
Follow Thomas D. Williams on Twitter @tdwilliamsrome