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Thursday, September 18, 2003

Hot Potato, Hot Potato

Hot Potato, Hot Potato

Here's an impertinent question. What's the missing number in the latest Illinois health reports? The Illinois Department of Public Health reports 281 abortions were performed on girls 14 and under, an additional 2,902 on girls between the ages of 15 and 17, for a grand total of 3,183 abortions in 2002 on underage girls. So what's missing?

While having sex with a girl between the ages of 13 and 17 is criminal sexual assault or aggravated criminal sexual assault, depending on the age of the rapist, there's a convenient loophole in the collection of statistics. Since the statute covers several kinds of sexual offense, the state of Illinois does not maintain data on the age of sexual assault victims. That is, we know 6,037 criminal sexual assaults were reported in 2002. We don't know how many of those assaults were committed against girls between the ages of 13 and 17.

Why don't we? After all, according to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, the research arm of Planned Parenthood, teens "who become sexually active at an early age are especially likely to have experienced coercive sex: seventy-four percent of women who had intercourse before age 14 and 60 percent of those who had sex before age 15 report having had a forced sexual experience" (Guttmacher Institute, Sex and America's Teenagers, New York, 1994). Two-thirds of teen mothers were victims of molestation, rape, or attempted rape prior to their first pregnancy (Family Planning Perspectives, Jan./Feb. 1992).

Abortion clinic personnel are required by law to report cases of child abuse. So, one would assume the people who sell contraceptives to kids and scrape babies out of under-age wombs would certainly report abuse. That makes the following transcript of a taped conversation with personnel at the local Peoria Planned Parenthood all the more interesting (transcripts and MP3 recordings can be found here).

CLINIC: Planned Parenthood. This is Leandra.
CALLER: Hi. Yeah. I was wondering if you guys do abortions there.
CLINIC: No, we don't. I can give you a number that do.
CLINIC: 691-9073.
CALLER: Okay. Well, could I ask you a quick question?
CLINIC: Um-hmm.
CALLER: My friend told me that since I'll be 14 in March that you guys have to tell my parents. But my boyfriend's 22. Could he take care of that, and we don't have to tell my parents? Because I don't know what would happen if they found out.
CLINIC: Oh. We don't say anything. Everything here is confidential. I mean, as far as outside, that's on you. But we keep everything here confidential.
CALLER: Okay. Well, do you guys have to tell anybody about my boyfriend or anything?
CLINIC: Uh?uh. We don't tell anybody nothing here. I mean, just you. Unless you give us permission, we tell no one nothing. It does put us in a little awkward position because we have been asked to report ... actually we're not ... it's something we're kind of on the borderline whether we're suppose to do anything about or not. Because there are legislators and others there concerned, not that we necessarily think it's our job to decide that. But if we have somebody under 17 coming in with somebody over 18, then there is come concern.
CALLER: Well, are you going to tell anybody?
CLINIC: No. But it would help us to decide ... just don't talk about his age when you come in. I guess I would say that.
CLINIC: And if you could come in by yourself, it might be best.
CALLER: Oh. So it would be better if he wasn't here?
CLINIC: Usually I would say it's better if he is there. Maybe I can put a note to the counselor you're going to see and tell her, don't ask. Don't ask, don't tell I guess is sort of unfortunately where we have to be about this.

The caller in this instance, was part of a nation-wide sting operation on abortion clinic providers. She was only pretending to be 13. Yet, when a real teenage girl gets pregnant, the father will be over 20 years old in 90% of the cases, one-third will be over 25. The younger the mother, the more likely that the father was three or more years older. 40% of all 15-year old girls who carried to term were impregnated by a man over 20 years old.

Life Dynamics, the Texas organization which called Peoria, along with over 800 other Planned Parenthood and abortion clinics throughout the nation, points out that the overwhelming majority of the clinics contacted either indicated they would not report the situation or instructed the caller in how to avoid being detected. More than 90% of the clinics violated the law, thus helping child predators continue sexually violating children. Study the numbers. If all underage abortions were reported, and if every criminal sexual assault were of an underage teen, it still means Planned Parenthood sold contraceptives to less than three thousand underage kids. If that's true, what happens to their claim that their contraceptive programs reduce teen pregnancy? The numbers don't add up.

Planned Parenthood's research indicates underage girls are being sexually molested by older men. Government statistics and their own employees tell us their clinics don't report this child molestation, despite the law's requirements. The media is silent. Discuss.

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