April 1st was apparently "Attack Crisis Pregnancy Centers Day" over at the RH Reality Check blog. Numerous entries decried how evil pregnancy centers are. Complaints about CPC deception and trickery were filed left and right. Evidence provided was either wax-paper thin or non-existent.
Vicki Saporta's entry (entitled "Targeting the Vulnerable: Crisis Pregnancy Centers Deceive") contained a long list of shenanigans which CPCs supposedly take part in on a routine basis but didn't link to anything which shows that any of her accusations were true. The only thing she links to is a National Abortion Federation paper which Serge summarized when it originally came out. A lot of her post is actually taken directly from the NAF paper.
As Serge notes, some of her accusations are just plain silly. For example, "Many CPCs are connected with religious organizations, but few disclose that fact in their advertising."
Yeah? So? Numerous charitable organizations are connected with various religions and they don't mention that connection in their advertisements. Listing affiliations isn't always the top priority of an advertisement (where space typically costs money). Saporta's point would be what exactly?
Others accusations are based on microscopically slim evidence. Saporta claims (my emphasis), "Once they get women inside their doors, CPCs often force women to watch graphic, misleading videos." She takes this accusation from the NAF report which states, "While women wait, CPCs often present them with videos and pictures depicting gruesome and graphic images of bloody and dismembered fetuses that have allegedly been aborted as a scare tactic in their effort to compel women not to have abortions."
On the NAF report, the sources for this information are this web site from the Brooklyn Pro-Choice Network which posts the supposed testimony of one woman from Arkansas and this 1999 newsletter from the Center for Reproductive Right where a woman named Jennifer Specht claims she watched a video with images of aborted children after signing a consent form.
Saporta additionally claims, "Some CPCs further mislead women by giving them false pregnancy test results so that they will postpone obtaining abortion care." This accusation is also taken from the NAF report which claims "When the pregnancy results are revealed they may be presented in ways that are ambiguous53 or even false.54"
The footnote 54 takes us to this web page from the Center for Reproductive Rights which claims (without a source) "Some CPCs have even been charged with misrepresenting the results of pregnancy tests in an effort to prevent women from obtaining an abortion."
Lauren Bull's post (entitled "Exposing Lies: CPC Advertising on College Campuses") was probably more pathetic. Bull tells the story about how she was "shocked" that a CPC was near her college campus and would advertise to college students. The advertisement said, "Scared, Pregnant, Need Help?" These ads were supposedly deceptive.
Bull tries shows how these ads were deceptive by deceptively pretending to think she might be pregnant and setting up an appointment at the CPC. She goes to the office and finds it has pictures of unborn children at various stages of development and parenting magazines. The horror!!!!!
Bull gets her pregnancy test back, feigns relief and leaves with abstinence brochures. The lies the CPC told her???? She doesn't mention or note a single one.
Your average pro-choice person can't find these posts persuasive, can they? I'd really like to know from the pro-choicers who read this blog if they find the Saporta and Bull posts to be worthwhile.
Can the pro-choice movement really not come up with anything more persuasive than attacking a CPC because they have parenting magazines, display pictures of unborn children (which are sooooo deceptive since if a woman thought she was at a place which provided abortions, the first she'd expect would be parenting magazines and fetal pictures) and offer free pregnancy tests to college students?