Ex-Planned Parenthood Director: ‘My Goal Is to Make Abortion Unthinkable’

A member of anti-abortion organization 'Derecho a vivir' (The right to live) holds a mock coffin during a protest in Madrid on October 31, 2013, to ask the Spanish government to pass a reform of the abortion law. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government had vowed to present by the end …
PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP/Getty

A former Planned Parenthood health center director says her main goal is not to make abortion illegal or even to defund Planned Parenthood, but, instead to make the entire idea of abortion “unthinkable.”

Abby Johnson, now a national pro-life leader, tells Breitbart News that, as the March for Life approaches Friday, it is understandable many pro-life activists are focused on eliminating taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood.

“But, if I’m totally honest, my main goal is not to defund Planned Parenthood,” Johnson said during an interview. “My main goal is not even to make abortion illegal. My goal is to make abortion unthinkable, so that women would know there are other options available and that there are real and reputable healthcare centers that can take care of all their healthcare needs.”

Johnson explains eight former abortion industry workers will be marching with the organization she founded – And Then There Were None (ATTWN) – during the March for Life in Washington, DC. On the group’s website, Johnson says she knows “the deception of the abortion industry very well.”

“I knew that my calling was to work with current and former abortion clinic workers,” she adds.

Johnson began working for Planned Parenthood in 2001 and eventually rose up the ranks to become a health center director. In 2009, however, she left the abortion industry, disturbed by pressure to increase her abortion clinic’s quota and expand late-term abortion services.

“I started this ministry because I realized that there must be many people like me; people who want to leave the industry but feel alone,” she explains.

“People come out of the abortion industry for a variety of reasons,” Johnson tells Breitbart News. “Usually there is some event that has taken place, that has caused them to say, ‘Okay, I no longer want to be a part of this organization.’”

She explains that such an “event” could be a particular abortion, or poor patient care.

“We had a woman leave because her clinic allowed a woman to almost bleed to death on the table before calling an ambulance,” Johnson says, adding that the deception of the abortion industry extends to their new hires as well:

A lot of times we have workers, especially the ones that leave in about one year, who leave because they are suddenly transferred to the back, having to work in the POC (product of conception) lab, having to piece babies back together. They just say, “Oh my gosh, this is not what I thought it was. There’s no way I want to be involved in this.”

We have some people getting involved in the abortion industry not even knowing it’s an abortion clinic. So, it doesn’t come up in the interview, they don’t tell them they’re doing abortions, the advertisement says they’re just looking for a medical assistant, or they’re just looking for a nurse. And then one day they show up and all of a sudden things are different, and they ask, “What’s going on?” and they say, “Today’s abortion day.” They had no idea they were doing abortions. There’s a lot of dishonesty within the industry with the people they hire about the services they provide and what they’re doing.

Johnson also observes how increasingly political Planned Parenthood has become in recent years, and how quick the organization is to jump on the latest progressive trend:

While I certainly empathize with women who have been assaulted, Planned Parenthood was very quick to jump on the #MeToo campaign, believing every woman’s story at face value without any proof. What’s interesting to me is these women who come through our organization – even women who have had abortions and had been harmed – they are completely discounted by Planned Parenthood. All of a sudden, Planned Parenthood needs all of this proof of what people are claiming because it doesn’t fit their agenda. We have witnessed systemic abuse inside of the abortion industry, and we ourselves inside the abortion industry have been perpetrators of that abuse, and here we are coming out saying, “We did this, we were wrong, and we’re sorry, and we want to make this right,” and the abortion industry completely discounts our testimony because it doesn’t fit with their agenda.

Johnson says that, in 2008, her Planned Parenthood clinic was one of the first to offer transgender treatments, even though the facility was located in a fairly conservative community.

“So, the idea was, ‘Oh, we want to support these people,’” she says. “And the message I was getting was, ‘We’re going to get in people’s faces that being transgender is normal and that we’re going to be here to help these people.’”

“Planned Parenthood was trying desperately to remain relevant,” she adds. “Anything that fits into the liberal ideology, that’s what they’re going to support – any relevant, trending talking point.”

Johnson observes that in its annual report released earlier this month, Planned Parenthood featured a category called, “Movement Building”:

And there were millions and millions of dollars put into this category, which, of course, is their sponsorship for the women’s march and women’s convention, etc. When I saw that I thought if Planned Parenthood wanted to be a place that truly cared for women, they would take those millions and millions of dollars, and provide services that women actually need, like full-service prenatal care, like primary care, like mammograms. The things that they say they want to provide, the things they say women need access to, they don’t actually provide. They could provide them with all the money they make, but instead, they put it into this constant political agenda. Their last report really read like a political document. It was less about the services they provide, and more about the politics they indulge in.

Johnson says that while many people who leave the industry are younger, her organization provides a healing program for people who have been out of the abortion industry for many years.

Like many pro-life leaders, she also notes that she, too, was skeptical about whether GOP 2016 candidate Donald Trump would support the pro-life agenda.

“When Trump was elected I was hopeful, but extremely hesitant,” she says. “But, I’ve been pleased he has done things he said he was going to do. Even last year for the March for Life, he called some reporters out and said, ‘Hey, there’s going to be some half a million people marching against abortion – are you going to be there?’”

The former abortion worker says Trump has gotten the media to talk about abortion. Ultimately, however, she points to the need for pro-life activists to work to get pro-life candidates into public office, especially at the state level.

“Here in the state of Texas, we have some fantastic pro-life Democrats,” she explains. “It’s not about being a Republican or Democrat, but about standing for the sanctity of human life. You may have an “R” behind your name, but that doesn’t mean you will uphold the sanctity of human life.”

The March for Life is held each year on the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s ruling in the case of Roe v. Wade, when the high court created a right to abortion though none existed in the Constitution.

The March will draw over 100,000 Americans from across the country to the nation’s capital. The theme of this year’s event is “Love Saves Lives”, which the March for Life organization states is “embodying the true spirit and mission of the pro-life movement by enlisting the power of love to empower others to choose life.”

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