TORONTO, July 28, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.com) – LifeSiteNews.com broke the story about Planned Parenthood’s latest addition to their ‘social fashion’ line—“I had an abortion” t-shirts—on Friday. Since then, it has elicited a firestorm of coverage—numerous news sources have joined the fray, among them: the Drudge Report, the Vancouver Sun, the New York Post, the San Diego Channel, the National Post and others. Available from Planned Parenthood’s on-line store, the t-shirt is marketed to post-abortive women to “assert a powerful message in support of women’s rights,” according to their web-site.
Toronto’s News Talk 1010 CFRB hosted a live radio call-in show on the subject. Listeners reported that a consensus of callers felt the t-shirts were in very bad taste. Most callers identified as supportive of abortion but said nonetheless that they had stopped supporting Planned Parenthood since they were pro-abortion. The Planned Parenthood on-line store that sells the shirt temporarily discontinued sales after receiving complaints from pro-life groups. The lapse was short-lived, as sales resumed after only several hours—with Planned Parenthood president Gloria Feldt declaring that the shirts allowed women to “stand up for choice,” according to a New York Post account. “It’s a heart-wrenching decision, but women don’t need to be ashamed of it,” she claimed.
Even individual Planned Parenthood chapters have expressed displeasure with the taste of the design. Planned Parenthood of Idaho Executive Director Rebecca Poedy told KBCI 2 Boise, “I think this is just a poor decision and we are just not supportive of it.” The move drew the ire of Calgary Roman Catholic Bishop Fred Henry, who called the t-shirt “callous” and indicative of the “deadly blindness come upon our society,” according to a Calgary Herald report. “I find it hard to imagine someone would want to wear that,” Bishop Henry said. “Celebrating the fact that you killed your baby,” Bishop Henry said, is “so callous. I don’t think this serves the cause of enhancing women’s issues or gender issues in any fashion,” he said. Gillian Long, Research Director for Campaign Life Coalition, commented to LifeSiteNews.com, “It is as bad as mass murderer collector cards—why glory in your shame?” Since LifeSiteNews.com was the first to report the news (by several days), some radio stations mistakenly reported that the t-shirts were being printed and sold by LifeSiteNews.com. A number of listeners e-mailed LifeSiteNews.com to express their disgust that we could be so insensitive. Here is a sampling of some writers comments: “After hearing about these t-shirts on a morning radio show here in Sacramento, I am appalled as a pro-choice woman that anyone could be so insensitive as this. Having had an abortion myself, there is no way for me to express the grief and anguish I went through lying on that table, as I was sobbing like my heart would break. How could you do this? These are the kinds of things that will end up getting the abortion right law overturned. Women need that right to make this very important, and heartbreaking, decision, and in one fell swoop these ‘pride’ t-shirts are going to make a mockery of pro-choice people everywhere. It is not something to be proud of, or taken lightly. It is a life changing decision, for those of us WITH souls, and a sense of morality. I am truly disgusted that you have made this a fashion trend and taken away all sense of compassion.”“I know I’m just a thirteen-year-old girl, but my opinion should count too . . . I speak for all the unborn children who have died because of abortion. Wearing a T-shirt that says ‘I had an abortion’ is like proclaiming to the world that you have killed someone . . . Just because someone has not yet been born, it does not mean that they are not living! It does not mean that they are not a human being!”“Hello. My name is . . . and I am a 21 year old college student. I find the shirt extremely offensive, and I would be enraged if I came across anyone wearing it! The fact that anyone would have the nerve to flaunt that they had an abortion is unbelievable! I feel like I’m in the twilight zone!” Read Friday’s LifeSiteNews.com coverage: “I had an Abortion” – Pride T-shirts Available from Planned Parenthood https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2004/jul/04072304.html Visit Planned Parenthood/Yahoo On-Line Store: https://store.yahoo.com/ppfastore/ihadabt.html Read CNSNews coverage: https://www.cnsnews.com/ViewCulture.asp?Page=%5CCulture%5Carchive%5C200407%5CCUL20040728b.html tv