I don't know if you've heard the great news, but women's health care is becoming more accessible than ever. With pap smears at Walgreens and LensCrafters getting into the abortion business, women won't ever have to worry about getting excellent care again!
To say it's been a week when false information about women's health has been spreading like wildfire is the understatement of the year. The latest controversy involved Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann and LensCrafters. During a speech Monday in Iowa, the possible GOP presidential candidate talked about why Planned Parenthood should lose its government funding and delivered this statement:
The executive director of Planned Parenthood in Illinois said they want to become the LensCrafters of big abortion in Illinois.
As you can expect, the eyewear retailer was NONE too happy about the comment ...
Why was Bachmann's statement so controversial? After all, Planned Parenthood Illinois CEO Steve Trombley actually did make the following statement to the Wall Street Journal back in 2008:
I like to think of Planned Parenthood as the LensCrafters of family planning.
So, wasn't Rep. Bachmann just echoing what he said?
The problem is simply this: Bachmann perverted the original statement by substituting "big abortion" for "family planning" -- and those terms are not interchangeable. When Trombley made the statement, he was referring to the fact that he wants family planning services -- which includes contraceptives, pregnancy exams, and some STD testing -- to be as easy and accessible to women as the local LensCrafters. Bachmann then twisted his statement and used it to support her argument that Planned Parenthood should be defunded, insinuating that PP is a one-stop shop where women can get an abortion in an hour -- just like LensCrafters.
But she's not going to get away with it.
Julie Maslov, communications director for Luxottica Retail, the parent company for LensCrafters, said the company contacted Bachmann's office Tuesday and asked that she stop making the comparison because "she's using our name without our knowledge or permission." A Bachmann spokesperson confirmed she will avoid using the company's name in the future. (And I would guess Planned Parenthood must also follow suit.)
I find it perplexing that as a woman, Rep. Bachmann refuses to acknowledge what Planned Parenthood actually does, and that abortion is a small percentage of the services that it offers. She doesn't have to support it or even agree with it, but to spread lies about an organization that helps so many fellow women makes the opposite of sense to me.
Image via markn3tel/Flickr