Planned Parenthood opponents protest Louisville clinic


Protestors outside of Planned Parenthood Aug. 22. Photo by Kaylee Arnett.

Kaylee Arnett

Over 500 people lined the sidewalk outside of Planned Parenthood Saturday Aug. 22 to protest abortion and the use of fetal tissue in medical research.

The rally was part of a nationwide protest of 320 Planned Parenthood locations around the United States, making it the largest anti-abortion protest to date.

Controversy over Planned Parenthood, while nothing new, flared up recently as part of a wider reaction to videos released by anti-abortion activists of Planned Parenthood employees discussing prices for fetal organs and tissue they supply for research. In a recent article featured in The Washington Post, Planned Parenthood representatives said that the videos were heavily edited and are taken out of context.

Demonstrators gather at the Aug. 22 Planned Parenthood protest. Photo by Kaylee Arnett

Protesters held signs that said “Planned Parenthood sells baby parts” and some even depicted graphic images of aborted fetuses.

The Louisville Metro Police arrived around halfway through the protest, ordering demonstrators to clear the roadway, given that some of them had wandered out of their designated area and were blocking the parking lane.

David Fallon, a protest attendee, made it clear that the general consensus of the activists is that fetal tissue should not be used in medical research.

“I’m not comfortable with it, no. Because you see where it’s progressed to, now they’re taking live babies, keeping their hearts going… it’s scary. I just feel that it’s gotten to the point now where they’ve crossed the line, and I think it’s time for more people to stand up for what they think is right,” Fallon said.

Washington D.C natives David and Ashley Brown said this about the protest: “We came to be a witness to life in front of a place of death.”

Regardless of protesters’ intentions, The Louisville chapter of Planned Parenthood does not actually perform abortions, but refers women to a different medical center in the city.

Some, such as Holly Brewton, believe that this issue is a matter of religious faith.

“I think women deserve the right to have care, but when your mission in what you do is not God-driven, then you lose your stance in how to stand in the community and to be funded,” Brewton said. “If Planned Parenthood would follow the standards of God in their delivery of care to women, I think there is a plan for them to be here.”

Planned Parenthood declined to speak on this issue, but instead issued a statement about their general response to protests.

“Protests at our health centers are nothing new, and we have security measures in place to protect the safety of our patients and employees, which is our top priority. The Louisville health center is not open, so we don’t expect any effect from the scheduled protest,” said Tammy Lieber, Parenthood’s director of communications.

The attendees plan to protest again at the same location this coming Saturday, Aug. 29.