The Biden administration’s dishonest efforts to force taxpayers to fund abortion via Title X have taken center stage. In order to create a victim narrative, HHS pushes some deeply misleading numbers, thanks to the new radically pro-abortion HHS Secretary, Xavier Becerra. His department blames the Trump administration’s multi-faceted and pro-life Protect Life Rule for the supposed harm to the uninsured, low-income families, and “people of color.” They want to, instead, replace it with real harm under Biden’s pro-abortion Less Life Rule. HHS claims that due to Title X grantees’ withdrawal from the program (namely Planned Parenthood), the program lost over 1,000 service sites. This led, allegedly, to a deep drop of 844,083 Title X clients from 2018 to 2019.
Less activism. More factivism. Out of those 1000 sites, over 600 were Planned Parenthood affiliates. If there was such a massive loss of Title X patients nationwide, why does Planned Parenthood’s latest annual report for FY 2019 show the exact same number of annual clients (2.4 million) served since 2013? According to the Congressional Research Service, Planned Parenthood serves 40% of all Title X’s patients—that’s 1.5 million people. But curiously, they didn’t lose one client in 2019. How’s that possible?
The truth is the number of Title X clients has been declining in the program for a long time. HHS blatantly ignores the downward trend that has been the case for years prior to and especially during the Obama administration. The number of patients surged in the first two years of Obama’s presidency, rising to 5,224,862 in 2010 and then proceeded to drop by the hundreds of thousands year after year. I don’t recall there being any alarm from leftists about “equity” or endangerment to the Title X program. Clearly, the only gag rule in effect is the self-imposed one from mainstream media that refuses to speak the truth about Planned Parenthood and America’s health. The number of Title X patients plummeted to 4,007,552 by the end of Obama’s second term (2016), a loss of 1.2 million people.
But this begs the question: What is causing the annual drop in those served by Title X?
Could it be people are less impoverished? Yes. Poverty rates for families hit the highest level in decades under Obama, reaching 11.8% in 2010. Those rates remained at that level for years, finally lowering to 9.8% in 2016. For female householders without a spouse present, it was even more of a stark contrast. In 2010, 31.7% were below the poverty threshold (the highest since 1997); it was 22.2% in 2019.
Could it be that people are using private and public health insurance? Yes. In 2010, only 31% of all family planning patients (Private, Public, Uninsured) had private or public insurance (negating the need for Title X assistance.) By 2019, that percentage increased significantly to 58%.
Could it be that Title X doesn’t serve as many people as HHS would like us to believe? Yes. Keep in mind, even in 2018 where 3,939,749 clients were served by this taxpayer program, this amounted to 2.5% of the U.S. female population (15 years and older) and 0.4% of the male population (15 years and older). Title X accounted for only 10% of the federal government’s family planning spending. Medicaid is a far larger allotment, accounting for 75% of these expenditures.
Of course, Planned Parenthood and its fake news allies kept trumpeting that our nation’s taxpayer-funded community health centers (that provide far more healthcare than Planned Parenthood) cannot absorb more clients. Yet they’ve added more than a million more patients every year since that bogus claim in 2017.
None of the Left’s Title X rhetoric is about facts. Those are aborted even more than Planned Parenthood aborts human beings. In typical victimhood fashion, the abortion federation’s president proclaimed back in 2019: “The Trump administration has forced Planned Parenthood grantees out of Title X—the nation’s program for affordable birth control and reproductive health care.” Planned Parenthood wasn’t forced out. They chose to opt out. In response to a question in a clearly biased CBS news interview about changing their abortion model to comply with Title X regulations, Alexis McGill-Johnson emphatically stated: “Absolutely not. I was on the Board when we voted to ensure that abortion was one of our core services that every center affiliated with Planned Parenthood would provide.”
Abortion is not healthcare. Planned Parenthood still chose abortion over the needs of Title X clients.
And HHS is doing the same. The ideological disease of wokeism has infected HHS as it declares: “Advancing equity for all, including people of color and others who have been historically underserved, marginalized, and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality, is a priority for OPA and the Title X program.”
The reality is that the only decrease in proportion of those served by the Title X program was among whites—a decrease of 4% since the Obama Administration. The program has seen an increase in the percentage of black patients since 2016 (from 20% to 22%) and Hispanics from 32% to 33% in 2019, and every other minority demographic has remained the same.
But, if all else fails, frame the issue as a racial one. Biden, Becerra and company pretend that minority communities need more abortion despite having rates much higher than the majority population. Vulnerable communities need better healthcare, not more hucksters pushing the violence of abortion. The proposed rule adds this assertion: “Health equity is achieved when every person has the opportunity to attain their full health potential.”
There is no health equity when it comes to abortion. Women bear the brunt of the physiological and psychological consequences of abortion. Men don’t. There is no health equity, regardless of hue of skin or socioeconomic status, if you’re a victim of abortion. The Biden administration is lying to the American public about Title X. (Please submit your comments to HHS here.) The only thing that should be aborted is the new rule wrapped in old lies.
Ryan Bomberger is the Chief Creative Officer and co-founder of The Radiance Foundation. He is happily married to his best friend, Bethany, who is the Executive Director of Radiance. They are adoptive parents with four awesome kiddos. Ryan is an Emmy Award-winning creative professional, factivist, international public speaker and author of NOT EQUAL: CIVIL RIGHTS GONE WRONG. He loves illuminating that every human life has purpose.
The views expressed in opinion articles are solely those of the author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by Black Community News.