Media Silent on Far-Left Anti-Abstinence Alliance

It's no secret that Planned Parenthood wants the federal government to stop funding abstinence-only education programs, but did you know the ACLU is working with them hand in hand?    

The abstinence-themed headlines making the news recently are like the one from an Associated Press story that ran last week in The Washington Times, “States abandon Bush funding for sex education.”  The article reports that 17 states, for various reasons, now have refused federal grant monies for abstinence education.  For some the grant comes with too many restrictions on what can be taught.  For others the fact that the grant program comes up for renewal annually and there is no guarantee it will pass.  Still other states cannot come up with the matching funds required.

What the Associated Press fails to report is that Planned Parenthood and the ACLU are working together to persuade states across the country to reject federal grant monies for abstinence programs.  Interestingly the connection was made on the same day and in the same paper running the AP article, The Washington Times.  In the paper's Culture, Etc. section, excerpts from Ryan T. Anderson's essay “The War on Abstinence” highlighted the connection between the two far-left organizations. 

As Anderson wrote: “The goal is to get enough states to refuse the federal abstinence-education funding to the point where the ACLU and Planned Parenthood can convince Congress to eliminate such funding entirely.”

Anderson also states:  “A year ago, only four states refused federal abstinence-education funding.  Today the number is 17.”

The Planned Parenthood/ACLU partnership appears to be bearing fruit.

Anderson's entire piece can be found here. He makes several valuable points, but this may be one of the most important:

While the collusion of Planned Parenthood and the ACLU has gone unreported, some attention has been paid to the fact that a growing number of states are refusing federal monies. Usually, this has been reported as if it were uncoordinated, a mere happenstance that all these states have independently decided to reject abstinence funds. When the Washington Post reported on the trend, it cited the comments of the groups leading the charge as if they were observers, not partisans, in the battle.

In fact, both the ACLU and Planned Parenthood are aggressively seeking to do away with abstinence-only education.  The ACLU has a page on its Web site headlined “Take Issue, Take Charge.” The subhead reads “Life, Liberty and Reproductive Freedom.”  The site contains action steps readers can take to influence their local communities, including a call to support the “Responsible Education about Life” Act which seeks to fund comprehensive sex education.

Planned Parenthood's assault on abstinence is continual.  In addition to legislative efforts it also includes a special Web site for teens ( which is laden with “how to” information on everything from abortion to a video showing how to use a condom.

CMI has previously documented the media's bias against abstinence education.  By failing to note the aggressive efforts being made by Planned Parenthood and the ACLU to get rid of federal abstinence education grants, the press is aiding and abetting these two liberal organizations in their efforts.   

Kristen Fyfe is senior writer at the Culture and Media Institute, a division of the Media Research Center.