Jindal using Louisiana women as pawns in his presidential campaign

Not much has been said about Gov. Bobby Jindal’s controversial decision to shut down Louisiana’s McDonald’s franchises after a customer in Mason City, Iowa, allegedly discovered fly larvae on a McDouble she purchased there last month.

The reason you’ve not heard about this controversy is, of course, because Jindal did no such thing. To close a restaurant’s franchises in Louisiana over an alleged health problem in another state would rightly be attacked as a massive overreaction, if not outright lunacy.

In a way, however, this is how Jindal has treated Louisiana’s two Planned Parenthood clinics after the release of surreptitious videos purporting to show an official of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America discussing the alleged “sale” of fetal tissue for medical research.

In fact, the official was discussing reimbursement for consensual, legal tissue donations that are common practice and not unique to Planned Parenthood. None of the officials on the videos has anything to do with the Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast and neither clinic in New Orleans and Baton Rouge performs abortions.

The facts, however, were trampled in Jindal’s shameless rush to exploit the controversy for political purposes. Jindal summarily canceled Louisiana’s contract with Planned Parenthood, meaning it would no longer provide family planning and health services to poor women under the state’s federally subsidized Medicaid program. Planned Parenthood has sued, asking a federal judge to intervene.

It’s not as if Louisiana doesn’t desperately need the services offered by Planned Parenthood and other Medicaid providers. The organization’s two clinics perform almost 20,000 tests annually for sexually transmitted infections. That’s important for a state, like Louisiana, which leads the nation in gonorrhea cases and is second in chlamydia and third in HIV and syphilis, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Planned Parenthood also provides gynecological exams, contraceptive care, cancer screenings and other wellness services for thousands more low-income individuals.

If the judge rules that Jindal’s actions are legal, those patients must find services elsewhere — if they can. In Baton Rouge, for example, Planned Parenthood has provided services to 60 percent of East Baton Rouge Parish’s contraceptive clients on Medicaid.

“You can’t just cut Planned Parenthood off one day and expect everyone across the city to absorb the patients,” Dr. Stephanie Taylor of LSU’s School of Medicine told The New York Times. “There needs to be time to build the capacity.” Taylor should know. Since 1999, she has consulted with the section on sexually transmitted diseases for Louisiana’s Office of Public Health.

Continue reading on NOLA.com at this link.

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26 Responses to Jindal using Louisiana women as pawns in his presidential campaign

  1. Stephen Winham says:

    So, NO services performed by Planned Parenthood in Louisiana would be eliminated – They would just be harder to get because its clients would have to seek them elsewhere. Notwithstanding this FACT, I bet it would be easy to quickly find people on the street who would say, “Praise God, Gov. Jindal has closed these abortion clinics!” And, don’t try to tell these people otherwise. After all, it is much easier to accept things on faith and, even if the truth about this finds its way into the minds of Jindal’s supporters, God knows we certainly don’t need more access to birth control, do we?

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  2. gnk55 says:

    Planned Parenthood and all its butchers need to GO.  Gary L. Greer 416 Travis St. # 1410 Shreveport, La. 71101 318/226-9224

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  3. Matthew Walton says:

    Instead of more access to birth control, why don’t we need less irresponsible copulation? Or is it that you think the poor just can’t be expect to suppress their animal desire to breed? No one has a “right” to consequence-free behavior. Should a community (or state) not have the right to decide what it’s values are? I’m pretty sure if it was put to a vote, a majority of the taxpayers in this state would be fine with the exclusion off PP from the approved Medicaid provider list, even with the knowledge that they don’t currently perform abortions in the state.

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    • Stephen Winham says:

      So, is your solution to the problem of “irresponsible copulation” denial of access to pregnancy prevention services? Do you seriously believe doing so will not lead to even more “irresponsible copulation” to the extent condom use, for example, goes down? Yes, a community should have the right to decide what its values are, but history has proven it is not possible to legislate either morality or responsibility. So, what is your solution?

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      • Fredster says:

        Stephen I refer to folks like the one above as PLUBs which stands for Pro Life Until Birth. He decries contraception and abortion but if poor women had those children he would be among the first to say “no assistance for you” to help rear the child after it was born.

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    • earthmother says:

      Less irresponsible copulation? Seriously? Are YOU going to tell “the poor” to “suppress their animal desires?” You have no understanding of human nature.

      Those who do know something about human nature know that allowing people to practice birth control is the best way to prevent abortion and the birth of children who may be abused or neglected. From a purely financial standpoint, birth control services are a lot less expensive than services to children who are at-risk, abused, neglected, unsuccessful in school….and their families.

      Bottom line – if you want fewer abortions, make family planning services easier to access.

      PS- women who tell their men “NO” often end up victims of domestic violence. So the criminal justice system and battered women’s services are now engaged.

      Want to save money on social services, special education services and law enforcement? Birth control is a lot cheaper.

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      • jechoisir says:

        Far be it for me to enter a fray about “responsible” or “irresponsible” copulation. But on behalf of the poor, I’d like to suggest it is demeaning to assume they haven’t access to the same sense of responsibility that governs the rest of the population. Responsibility is not a factor of money. The issue here is not really about birth control, but about abortion and the behavior of an organization that has broken both state and federal laws. The state should provide services including birth control to the indigent so we don’t have to deal with an organization that rejoices in late-term abortions so they may sell body parts at top prices. Why does that not make anyone else indignant? Why isn’t the behavior of Planned Parenthood castigated? And, out of curiosity, why is contraception only a woman’s issue? (Please don’t bother to tell me that the woman bears the child; I know that and that just takes us back to responsibility).

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      • Robert Mann says:

        Please tell me what Louisiana state laws PP has broken. Jindal and his DHH have not cited any laws that PP has broken. In federal court the other day, the state’s attorney basically said they cancelled the contract because they just wanted to.

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      • jechoisir says:

        Mr. Mann, re your question. As I’m sure you know, the activities revealed on those Planned Parenthood tapes certainly seem to violate federal laws and directives regarding the sale of aborted fetal tissue. Louisiana is not alone in having no state law governing this issue and like both the WSJ and NYTimes have detailed, many states are now scrambling to write laws to cover the issue of profit/profiteering and adjusting abortion techniques to produce intact body parts. I imagine most Americans were simply unaware of the callous marketing in which the organization engages. The issue has also made concrete for many what in theory sounded as okay as infanticide can sound. I imagine most states will clarify through local legislation federal laws and regulations, which have legal status. Whether Louisiana will be among them is beyond my ken. We seem to have a hard time here getting a legislature and governor in Baton Rouge at the same time. Meanwhile, I assume we come under federal law.

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      • Robert Mann says:

        You use “I imagine” and “I assume” quite a few times. Give me facts. Please share with me the statutes — state or federal — that PPGC has violated.

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      • jechoisir says:

        Here is what I assume and why I assume it. I assume you research materials about which you write. Therefore, I assume you know the federal laws and regulations re the use of human tissue recovered after death (U.S.Code 42:289g.2 plus related court rulings/clarifications re same), which forbids any person or entity knowingly to acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for “valuable consideration” if the transfer involves interstate commerce. Since the interstate commerce clause has been stretched so thin, I also assume its case law would permit it to be used to cover almost any state activity imaginable, including this one. I also assume you have seen the videos where one of the top official of Planned Parenthood haggles over price of this tissue, saying she would have to contact other buyers before committing to the price offered. Since the payments for fetal tissue are limited to the preservation and transfer of that tissue, the cost would be known and exist as a fixed price point. Haggling could only involve profit. I also assume you know the other parts regarding the solicitation and acquisition of human tissue and the pertinent case law. Further I assume you are aware from the numerous articles in every major U.S. popular print and online publication that argue that this law alone is “probably” (only court tests will prove it other than “probable”) inadequate to cover part of the PP activities revealed in the notorious videos. I also assume you know the law regarding late-term abortion. Further, I assume you know that the official’s conversation about the possibilities for acquiring body parts and about changing abortion techniques to insure their integrity would necessarily involve late-term abortion. While it looks like a lot printed out like this, really I assume only the knowledge of a casual reader of publications. My reason for believing that the legal situation will be changed is that so many states have already begun to write laws covering fetal tissue.

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  4. earthmother says:

    Two favorite quotes very apropros to Bob’s insightful article:

    “The only thing harder than speaking truth to power is speaking truth to stupid.”

    “It’s very difficult to get a decent government when a substantial majority openly want a bad one.”

    As for jindal’s attempt to eliminate Planned Parenthood and the vital services it provides, mostly to the disadvantaged among us, it’s another piece of a predictable pattern: loss of non-emergency hospital-based services when he privatized our charity hospital system, as the hospitals now providing “charity” services turn away patients who have no money to pay, private insurance or Medicaid. Refusal to expand Medicaid so that more Louisiana citizens can have access to medical care. Attempted to deny hospice services to dying Medicaid patients. Cutting services to the disabled… Jindal’s war against the poor and women knows no bounds.

    Actions speak louder than words. These are not the actions of a real Christian. Matthew 25:35-45. “What you do for the least of these my brethren you also do for me….and what you did not do for them you also did not do for me.”

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  5. jechoisir says:

    First, the comparison between shutting down burger franchises in Louisiana because of “alleged” fly larva found in its products in other states is specious. Does the fact those videotapes were obtained “surreptitiously” alter the callousness and gross illegality they reveal in Planned Parenthood policies? Do you really believe these were isolated incidents, unknown to officials in the organization? Representatives talking about the “fun” involved in splitting a fetus in order to double profits and abiyt the “benefits for science” certainly don’t indicate they are engaging in an activity disapproved by the organization.

    These abhorrent actions of Planned Parenthood and the casualness with which they are discussed ought to chill the blood of all Americans. The national reaction was not simply to abortion, but to the Planned Parenthood’s callous attitude to life and to the illegal use of aborted fetal tissue for profit. These representatives were not talking about undifferentiated tissue, either, but about body parts. And the tone all took in discussing the sale of infant or embryonic body parts makes even Jonathan Swift’s “knowing American’s” remarks in “A Modest Proposal” seem pallid.

    Josef Mengele, the notorious Nazi “Angel of Death” at Auschwitz, did not wake up one morning suddenly immune to human compassion. That attitude develops with repeated experience, what Nathaniel Hawthorne calls the gradual hardening of the heart until at last the person lacks all sympathy with others. Watching those tapes of the Planned Parenthood representatives, I thought of Mengele.

    Officials are right to be cautious of the activities of Planned Parenthood. That organization, not the Governor, is responsible for their loss of license in the state. Place the blame where it belongs.

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    • earthmother says:

      jechoisir – Planned Parenthood has not lost its license either in Louisiana or any other state. No one has found PP guilty of unsound or illegal activities anywhere. The blame is with a pandering politician attempting to curry favor and votes by de-funding PP. That ploy has been tried in several states and has been rejected by the courts in all of them. Nowhere has PP lost its license to provide services.

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    • Have you no sense of decency? Using Planned Parenthood and Josef Mengele compared in this way is
      obscene and vicious.

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      • jechoisir says:

        The comparison is neither obscene or vicious. Reread the paragraph and watch those videos. When we become so callous about life as that woman’s language reveals she has become, we become dangerous. Mengele was not born an “angel of death.” Like all who become inured to the suffering of other beings, he grew into one. In my personal opinion, that woman in those videos has a head start.

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  6. earthmother says:

    First, no particular demographic has a lock on either “responsible behavior “ or “animal desires. ” I think most of us know wealthy, educated people who have had what they unfortunately (for the child) refer to as “oops babies.” I know a couple who are medical professionals who claim they don’t know where their last two of four children came from. I know a pair of Ph.Ds whose only child (age 9) announced to me on our first meeting that she was supposed to be aborted but at the last minute they decided to let her live. And I know a number of people with little education who have managed to exhibit reproductive responsibility and limit their family size.

    The state SHOULD provide birth control services to the needy. Please see my comment below about cuts to medical services. Proximity is also an enormous factor in access to services –those who don’t have cars and live where bus service is poor or non-existent, often have difficulty going to providers at a distance from their neighborhoods. Baton Rouge women had a huge problem getting to the new Woman’ s Hospital location for Medicaid-provided services after Earl K. Long Hospital closed – it’s a very long distance from most parts of the city and the public buses did not go that far (I think that route was finally extended after a state legislator walked in the heat on the side of Airline Hwy. from the last bus stop to the hospital). And of course for the poor, no Medicaid, no services, although the state gave Woman’s the charity contract after closing Earl K. Long, which provided care regardless of ability to pay. So even if birth control is available to some, access may be extremely difficult when providers are moved to inaccessible locations. Does anyone think that’s an oversight?

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  7. Patrick Robinson M.D. says:

    One manner in which Birth Control Pills prevent pregnancy is by preventing the ovaries from releasing its eggs. However, occasionally an egg is released and is subject to fertilization by a sperm. Not to worry, Birth Control Pills also work by making the lining of the woman’s cervix much less likely to receive implantation of the fertilized egg. In this case, the fertilized egg is “aborted”. If you are an individual who believes life begins at conception and you and your spouse practice birth control via Birth Control Pills, you may be aborting your own babies. The chances of this happening may only be 1 in 100, and you would never know whether or not it happened in any specific month, but does that excuse the fact you may be responsible for having aborted a life. If you truly believe that life begins at conception, shouldn’t you be calling for an end to the manufacturing and distribution of Birth Control Pills? I shared this information because it is important that we all examine our own actions before “removing the splinter” from our neighbor’s eye. (If you question my explanation of how Birth Control Pills work, then please look it up on the internet or contact your personal physician for an explanation.)

    Like

    • earthmother says:

      Oh, Dr. Robinson, PLEASE do not give any more ammunition to the religion-crazed storm troopers who have already begun a campaign to ban all forms of artificial birth control methods for all women, regardless of their own beliefs, on the theory that all birth control methods are abortifacients. These people want to turn the clock back to the days when women were economically and emotionally enslaved with no reproductive freedom or control over their own bodies and sexuality. These people want to deny birth control to women receiving public assistance on the idea that public funds may not pay for abortion. Your idea that some should call for an end to the manufacture and distribution of birth control pills is prescient. They already are!

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      • Patrick Robinson Robinson M.D. says:

        I see your point. I was not trying to convince the “fanatics” to believe one way or another, only that their audience think for themselves. By giving people information that affects them directly, maybe they will think more deeply on the subject before speaking. And if you don’t live your belief, you are what is known as a hypocrite!

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  8. jechoisir says:

    Dr. Robinson, I think the concern raised in general about the behaviors and suggested policies of Planned Parenthood is not about birth control and in many cases, not even about abortion, but about the callousness to life exposed on those tapes and especially to the eagerness with which the top official of that organization talked about new techniques of aborting a fetus so that multiple body parts might be harvested and marketed. The latter would imply late-term abortion, which is illegal, as is the kind of aggressive marketing of human tissue discussed on the tapes.

    Based on my private experience and much that I have read, I think American women in general are taking a second look at abortion. New technologies have made us aware that what might be described as human life begins earlier than many had understood. I believe this reflection is good. It is not expressed in public rantings or religious pronouncements, generally, but in private lives and ideas discussed among friends.

    What I resent is that such discussions are too often treated as ignorant or bigoted by partisan groups if they vere from the politically correct pro-everything-about-abortion. In the end, I believe this is not merely a women’s issue, but a civilization’s issue, and deserves treating with appropriate complexity.

    The element of “choice” in the case of an abortion implies knowledge and the ability to reason, and perhaps with more knowledge (e.g., that which you supply) women may alter many decisions involved with reproduction. I think it is good to remember there is more than one way of looking at the issue—-of any issue. And that has not been the tenor of this discussion so far. Thanks for adding information.

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  9. A fine young man , appointed by Louisiana governor Mike Foster to the post of Secretary of the
    Department of health and hospitals. He did a bang up job. And not too shabby as a U.S. Congressmen
    either.
    He is gifted and talented; well educated and from a good family. He could have accomplished good things
    as a powerful La. Governor.
    We lost him to his ambitions. And he has gained nothing for his efforts.
    Unless he gets a Fox News show, it’s good by Booby.
    I think David Vitter will be the next governor and he despises Jindal. There is nothing here for him.
    What a terrible waste of God given talent.

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    • earthmother says:

      He was NOT a fine young man appointed by Foster to head DHH, he was a programmatic hit man even then. Jindal left DHH in shambles, just as he did the UL System. He was a lackluster, do-nothing congressman who abandoned his duties but continued to draw his salary while campaigning for governor. See a pattern of payroll fraud here?

      He is not gifted but merely has a photographic memory, and exhibits no talent except in flimflamming less discerning people. He has always been eaten up by ambition, as his friends and teachers from middle school on have related. Though he shows great disdain for public employees, his mother is a career Louisiana civil servant (Dept. of Labor/Workforce Development) and he has been on the public payroll since age 24, not through a desire to serve the people, but as a way to gain money (a millionaire on a state/federal salary? please!) and power, using Louisiana as a stepping stone to greater things (good luck with that) and a lab for failed ultra-conservative fiscal theories.

      He bullies people as a powerful governor, costs true public servants their livelhoods and steals from the poor to give to the rich. He is a disaster as a governor and more importantly, as a human being.

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      • jechoisir says:

        Are there no limits to your judgmentalism? I doubt you know Governor Jindal well enough to judge him as a human being.

        And how do you know he was not academically gifted? I’d be willing to bet the retirement fund that he had an intelligence well above that used to identify intellectual giftedness, and I have lifelong experience in working with highly gifted people.

        Ambition has traditionally been regarded as an admirable quality in a student or adult. It is a quality I have seen particularly among first-generation American students, and it generally accounts for new developments in ideas and technology. Indeed that is the only place such CAN come from. In childhood and youth, intellectual giftedness also tends to be associated with idealism. The gifted child wants to cure cancer, bring world peace. Too bad those teachers didn’t encourage that idealism, help direct his ambition. Ask any academically gifted student or teacher, and he will tell you his biggest source of discouragement is the anti-intellectualism of teachers who are not equipped to work with student of his abilities. I saw this first-hand for 20 years, and it has never ceased to shock me.

        Moreover, I’d be willing to bet that his education never required him to deal seriously with the great books of imaginative literature. The first time I heard him speak I sensed what I had heard in students from a similar background — an insensitivity to the way people talk, a scientific/economics vocabulary that implied an insufficient understanding of the complexity of human life and activities. I wanted to write him and say, “Read some fiction. Learn how people experience the world emotionally and spiritually. For you are working with people, not systems.”

        Had those teachers who you claim speak so badly of his ambition done a little better work with him, he might have developed differently. I detest teachers who talk out-of-school about their students, present or past unless it is to praise their general worth. Shame on them. Medical doctors would be sued for that.

        I think Mr. Terral is right: Governor Jindal had promise. He was limited by his primarily theoretical early and later education. Like an accountant, he naturally thought numbers and systems. When he worked in the university system, I saw first-hand his “efficiency expert” approach. But Lord knows, Louisiana can always use more efficiency, fewer brothers-in-law. His limited education made him ready prey to theorists and greedy money-men who sought to advance their own egos through him. I find that sad. It is the tragedy of politics.

        I voted for him and for the first two years, along with many others, I was impressed. After the Blanco fiasco, he managed hurricane recovery immediately and efficiently, for instance. He got rid of brother-in-law redundancy in places like the prison system. He looked good.

        Has it occurred to you that you yourself might be guided by private interests, limited viewpoint? That you might be wrong or serve your own interests rather that the public good. It can happen, you know.

        I’m surprised you were not asked to be more specific in your charges and claims. I was. But then I questioned the prevailing view. How, for instance, do you know the Governor was “not gifted,” but had merely “a photographic memory”? Name those unprofessional teachers who told you that and tell us how you had access to his academic records. Define those “shambles.” Tell what was “lack-luster” about his congressional term. And so on.

        What ever happened to humility and charity? And the ability to discuss a public policy in relation to events and actions without descending to personality and going back to one’s childhood. That is mean-spirited and illogical.

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  10. ” Irressponsible copulation “. . Sounds like every teen fantasy I ever had. What a great title for
    a movie !

    Liked by 1 person

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