By Ameillia Wedward, Intern
The combination of COVID, a social justice movement, and a presidential election perfectly created a chaotic storm in the first half of 2020. One particular case has been clearly lost in this commotion. David Daleiden v. Planned Parenthood demonstrated the abortion industry’s threat against the judicial system, taxpayer rights, and the pro-life movement.
Planned Parenthood has a history of breaking laws and hurting women in order to financially profit. The abortion giant has repeatedly told Congress that they have “declined and rebuffed the deal” of selling fetal tissue, an outlawed practice that happens predominantly after a late-term abortion. Yet pro-life activist David Daleidan, founder of the Center of Medical Progress (CMP), a biotech research company, proved otherwise. In 2015, Daleidan acted as a biotechnology representative from CMP in order to meet with Planned Parenthood clinic directors. His secretly recorded videos explicitly showed that the facilities had been selling and transferring fetal tissue derived from abortion. This practice, both illegal and ethically depraved, demonstrated Planned Parenthood’s greater concern for profit than for their patients. Once Daleiden gathered his findings, he re-registered CMP as a journaling organization and published an article exposing Planned Parenthood’s crimes. Shortly after, the National Abortion Federation sued him on 15 counts. In the trial, Planned Parenthood confessed that they were indeed harvesting and selling post-abortive baby parts, yet Daleiden and CMP lost the case in February of 2020; Planned Parenthood won over $2 million.
Planned Parenthood threatens the validity of our judicial system. Even before it started, one judge and his predisposition made the trial unfair. Judge William Orrick III, from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, is pro-choice and a large donor to Planned Parenthood. In fact, Judge Orrick told the jury ahead of time that he decided Daleiden was guilty based on the accounts of trespassing during his undercover journalism. Daleiden and CMP tried to remove Orrick from the case because of his biases, but they lost. The case was already stacked and Daleiden’s Sixth Amendment right, the right to a fair trial, was completely disregarded. Our courts were made to uphold the legislature’s written laws as part of our government’s checks and balances. Yet, the plaintiffs tried to use many of these protective laws against Daleiden. This case presents an ever-present legal battle of a journalist’s First Amendment rights versus obtaining information illegally. While Daleiden and CMP had good intentions, how they received the information was unlawful. Daleiden argued that he and CMP were not breaking any state laws by recording these public conversations with Planned Parenthood. The abortion organization was not notified about the videos, which is why such findings were found inadmissible in court. However, didn’t Planned Parenthood give up their right to privacy by meeting in public? Planned Parenthood did not deny that they committed the crime, but they prosecuted Daleiden and CMP for the leaked information. According to CMP’s Twitter, they believe “that the verdict set ‘a dangerous precedent for citizen journalism and First Amendment civil rights across the country.’”
Additionally, Planned Parenthood threatens taxpayer rights. In 2019 alone, they received over $616 million from taxpayers. They utilize these funds to support their organized crimes – like harvesting and transferring baby tissue. Planned Parenthood viciously fights to defend late term abortions. Daleiden told EWTN that this is done so that there are “more marketable baby parts” that Planned Parenthood can sell. Although legislative efforts like the Hyde Amendment protect tax dollars from directly funding abortion, the abortion giant has the ability to reshuffle funds. Ultimately, government funds are still heavily supporting the largest abortion provider in the United States and their illegal activities.
Planned Parenthood is threatening the pro-life movement. From this case, we have seen how the abortion industry has stomped on the rights of free speech and beliefs. They deceive the public about their true motives; in reality, Planned Parenthood kills children and profits from their tissue. The pro-life movement is built on the foundation of using First Amendment rights to educate the public and share the truth about the value and dignity of all human life. By illegally selling fetal tissue and then reacting defensively when they were caught by Daleiden, they demonstrated that profit is of higher value to them than basic moral standards and that their business practices are more important than the value of life.
The Daleiden case, although disappointing, should compel the pro-life community into action. We must elect pro-life officials, and hold them accountable in authoring and voting for bills that support the unborn. Re-educating our friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors about the lies of the abortion industry (and which candidates support what agenda) helps change hearts and minds to favor life. Pro-lifers need to continue to push and sign petitions for defunding Planned Parenthood. We should encourage elected officials to instead support pregnancy resource centers that offer healthcare and meet basic needs of mothers and babies. The average American should not pay for the illegal and corrupt practices of Planned Parenthood. Overall, the case of David Daleiden v. Planned Parenthood shows a much needed change in how we view the world’s biggest abortion industry.