Short Answer

by The Dartmouth Opinion Staff | 2/27/11 11:00pm

Friday's Verbum Ultimum discussed proposed cuts to federal funding for Planned Parenthood and other family planning organizations. How would you assess the House of Representatives's vote to eliminate federal family planning funding?

The proposed discretionary spending cuts for not only family planning but also for education, transportation, community development, housing and environmental programs are only the tip of the iceberg in America's entitlement crisis. Unless something is done about entitlements, we're going to see deeper and deeper discretionary budget cuts as well as continuing tax increases over the coming years, regardless of which party is in power.Jonathan Pedde

The last thing we need is for the federal government to spend our tax dollars to propagate the morally degenerate values espoused by Planned Parenthood. While there's nothing wrong with the examinations, advising and STI and cancer screenings provided by Planned Parenthood, there's no reason why those who don't use these services should have to pay for other people who do.Roger Lott

This move is a craven, gutless assault on women's reproductive health with no justifiable public policy rationale. In other words, it's par for the course in the lunatic asylum that is today's GOP.Raza Rasheed

The Pence Amendment is not the women's health apocalypse that Friday's Verbum Ultimum and similar reports have made it out to be. All Title X funds combined represent just 20 percent of federal spending on family planning and other reproductive health services, and Planned Parenthood is only one of the organizations that receives those funds. Furthermore, government grants including but not limited to Title X funds only constitute a third of Planned Parenthood's operating budget. The cuts are purely symbolic of a pro-life congressman's antipathy for an organization that is synonymous with the abortion industry. Planned Parenthood is not going out of business, and low-income women will still have over a billion dollars in Medicaid funds available for their reproductive health needs.Charles Clark

The notion that some Americans may not want their taxpayer dollars to fund abortions is entirely acceptable. If Planned Parenthood's promotion of abortion services is problematic, I suppose congressional Republicans could legitimately cut the organization's federal funding if they and the government can fill the gap and provide the same safe and affordable reproductive health care that women will now lose. Oh, except these same Republicans are hell-bent on repealing the health care reform bill.Louis Wheatley

House Republicans are attempting to push their moralistic agenda under the false guise of deficit reduction. The rationale for cutting these programs is absurd. Family planning organizations provide sorely needed reproductive care to the most disadvantaged in our society. The GOP has no issue with extending incredibly costly tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, and yet somehow manages to justify eliminating these crucial programs for insignificant savings.Keshav Poddar

Regardless of personal views regarding the issue, abortion is not unconstitutional in the United States. This blatant attempt to stamp out abortion at the expense of the health and well-being of countless women of low socioeconomic status is abhorrent.Sapna Chemplavil

Cutting funding for organizations like Planned Parenthood would be to the detriment of the one in five American women who have used its services. The move is not only contrary to reason, but yet another dangerous example of trying to legislate morality.Jacob Batchelor