Matt Vasquez and Margaret Caligaris are members of the Cal Poly Students for Life officer team. The views expressed in letters to the editor do not necessarily reflect the viewpoints or editorial coverage of Mustang News. 

Katherine Tinder’s editorial from March 27, “The Facts on Planned Parenthood,” was written in response to a display that we, Cal Poly Students for Life, recently hosted on campus to educate students about the undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood executives discussing the sale of fetal body parts. We respect her passion for the needs of women and issues surrounding reproductive healthcare.

We agree that “sex can be a matter of life and death,” but we acknowledge that life begins at conception. It is an indisputable biological fact that a new, genetically distinct human organism exists at fertilization. This truth is supported through philosophical, biological and social arguments which we are happy to discuss with you in person. Due to limited space in this letter, we will instead address other issues and misinformation about Planned Parenthood.

Our display, Planned Parenthood Betrays Women, was necessary because women are betrayed when the fetal tissue from their abortion is sold for prices that have a “sliding-scale,” all their own. The Planned Parenthood affiliate that was captured on film had no qualms about accepting the highest prices on the market. By law they must only collect reimbursement for actual costs. Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood recently told the National Institutes of Health (NIH) they would no longer receive reimbursements for fetal tissue. This begs the question: Why cancel reimbursements if they are truly legitimate? Women are betrayed because illegal procedures are used to extract whole fetuses — intact and still biologically alive — because, as stated in the videos, whole parts are more valuable.

David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the Center for Medical Progress were indicted by a grand jury in Texas for their use of false identification documents and attempting to purchase fetal tissue. This indictment requires that they go on an upcoming trial in court. It is not a ruling over their being guilty or not. Katherine stated Planned Parenthood was cleared, but all reports state the jury never voted on claims against Planned Parenthood. The district attorney responsible for the indictment has an office colleague who holds a position on Planned Parenthood’s board of directors. The use of false identification documents is a practice employed by investigative journalists time and time again.

We are pro-life, against abortion and in favor of reproductive health care services that don’t exploit women and their unborn children.  Planned Parenthood runs the nation’s largest abortion chain. It commits 300,000 of the 1 million abortions in our nation each year. In addition, Planned Parenthood’s most popular contraceptive — the birth control pill — has been classified by the World Health Organization as a Group 1 carcinogen. It causes breast, cervical and liver cancer in women. Planned Parenthood does not tell women that 90 percent of all the so-called contraceptives it sells works some of the time by preventing implantation of an already created human being that you can see stated on the package inserts. allows women and men to locate federally funded and qualified reproductive health care centers — which do not offer abortion — within a 5-mile radius. Three are listed for Cal Poly: Community Health Centers CASA, Community Health Centers Women’s Health and Community Health Centers San Luis Obispo II. In addition, there is also Tree of Life Pregnancy Support Center and the Center for Health and Prevention. Thus, five centers in SLO do not perform abortions yet provide all else on the array of services that Planned Parenthood provides. Women and men should not settle for low-quality health care and resources like those offered at Planned Parenthood. Consumer Reports stated that Planned Parenthood’s condoms “scored the lowest among 23 types” when subjected to tests measuring “strength and reliability.” Why go somewhere that offers low-quality resources when other federal clinics offer better ones?

Please join us for our next gathering on April 8 at 7 p.m. in Graphic Arts (building 26), room 104. There are always kind conversations, happy humans and free food to be found. There is so much to discuss and so little time or article space to discuss it in.

Letters to the editor may be submitted to with the subject line “Letter to the editor” to be considered for publication. Submission should not exceed 700 words, and should include a headline, and your year, major or position. Letters are subject to minor edits for grammar, style and clarity. You may also submit a photo to be considered for use with the article.

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