In Hour-Long Attack On Planned Parenthood, Beck Inexcusably Ignores Key Fact
Glenn Beck devoted the February 18 edition of his Fox News show to promoting the false claim that Live Action's undercover videos showed Planned Parenthood abetting the sex trafficking of underage girls. Beck did not mention once during his hour-long show that, before any of the hoax videos were released, Planned Parenthood contacted the FBI to report the possibility that sex trafficking was occurring.
Beck Falsely Claims Planned Parenthood Is Assisting In Sex Trafficking
Beck Claims There Are "Dozens Of" Videos Of Planned Parenthood Helping A Pimp Get Abortions For Underage Girls. From the February 18 edition of Fox News' Glenn Beck:
BECK: If I told you there were people in Afghanistan under the noses of our troops that were assisting mullahs that were keeping underaged girls in a slave trade and our troops were not reporting it and they were watching it go on, they were in fact assisting or advising the pimps, would you say those troops need to come home and be court-martialed? Those troops should not be serving us?
I think the answer would be yes.
If I told you that our dollars in Egypt were being used to keep young girls in -- even if they were living in luxury but they were being kept so men could come and rape them and our money was going to give them medical support, to make sure that they're healthy, to make sure that they didn't have children, they got abortions from the rapes every night. If I told you that we had video of people, our own people, assisting them, would you say that would be a front page story?
It's not a front page story because it's happening here in America, and it's happening at Planned Parenthood and nobody wants to think about it.
That's why I think in time abortion will be recognized as the horror that it is.
BECK: There are dozens of videos doing -- showing horrible things happening at Planned Parenthood where a pimp will come in and will say, hey, I've got all these underage girls and I got to get them abortions, can you help? And they say, yes.
Beck Hosted Anti-Abortion Activist Lila Rose To Spread Falsehood That Planned Parenthood Abets Sex Trafficking. Beck's guest during the show was Lila Rose, the activist behind the under cover videos depicting someone posting as a pimp asking Planned Parenthood personnel for medical treatment for underage prostitutes. Rose has repeatedly used falsehoods and distortions to claim that the videos show Planned Parenthood is complicit in sex trafficking. [Media Matters, 2/14/11, 2/10/11, 2/8/11, 2/8/11, 2/4/11, 2/1/11]
In Fact, Planned Parenthood Contacted the Justice Department To Report Possible Sex Trafficking Scheme
Before Videos Were Even Released, Planned Parenthood Asked Justice Department To Investigate The Incidents. During the show, neither Beck nor Rose mentioned that far from participating in a sex trafficking scheme, Planned Parenthood Federation of America contacted Attorney General Eric Holder to report a possible multistate sex trafficking scheme based on visits by a person stating that he was a pimp of underage girls to several Planned Parenthood clinics. From a Planned Parenthood Federation of America press release:
Last week, Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) alerted federal authorities to a potential multistate sex trafficking ring. Over a five day period, visitors to Planned Parenthood health centers in six states said they were seeking information from Planned Parenthood about health services Planned Parenthood could provide to underage girls who were part of a sex trafficking ring. Subsequent to alerting U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Planned Parenthood learned the identify of one of those involved and believes these visits are likely a hoax by opponents of legal abortion seeking to discredit Planned Parenthood, which delivers preventive health care and abortion services to three million women each year.
Men, sometimes accompanied by a woman, have visited at least 11 Planned Parenthood health centers in six states within a one-week time frame. During their visits, they claimed to be involved in sex trafficking of teens, some of whom are in the United States illegally. These men appeared at health centers without appointments and said that they were seeking health services for themselves, but they quickly turned the conversation to the sex ring they said they were managing.
"When Planned Parenthood learns of an operation that exploits young women, we vigilantly work with law enforcement authorities to uncover and stop this abhorrent activity," said Stuart Schear, PPFA vice president for communications. "Planned Parenthood's top priority is the health and safety of our patients and the health and well-being of women and teens across the country, and we have been in contact with federal and local authorities to identify the persons involved in these visits." (bolding in the original) [PlannedParenthood.org, 1/24/11]
Lila Rose Distorts Remarks By Planned Parenthood Spokesman
Rose: VP At Planned Parenthood Said That "Providing All the Options To The Pimp About How He Can Sell The Girls On The Streets" Is Professional. From the February 18 edition of Fox News' Glenn Beck:
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Well, I had asked why if it were just rogue employees of Planned Parenthood that did this or the higher ups you had mentioned managers. And now I'm thinking the higher up would be the government but it doesn't surprise me what they do with our tax dollars.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: So, question answered.
BECK: Have you ever caught a head person?
ROSE: Well, managers, practitioners, you know, the top nurse. But beyond that we've seen top level executives like the Vice President executive, Stuart Schear, saying that the behavior on the tape is professional. Saying that this is professional care that they are providing all the options to the pimps about how he can sell the girls on the streets, et cetera. That's how --
BECK: Well, if you define professional as doing something for money, yes it is professional. [Fox News' Glenn Beck, 2/18/11]
Schear Actually Said Employees In New York and Virginia "Responded Professionally To Questions, Discussed These Encounters With Management, And Provided A Report For The FBI." Schear did not say that every employee at each Planned Parenthood clinic in the videos that have been released acted professionally. Rather, he stated that employees on videos from New York and Virginia acted professionally and that the encounters were reported to management and the FBI. From Schear's statement:
Unlike other publicized tapes, the hoax 'patients' in New York were not able to get beyond the reception desk for a private consultation. Like other encounters that have been recently publicized in Virginia, our staff responded professionally to questions, discussed these encounters with management, and provided a report to the FBI. [PlannedParenthood.com, 2/8/11]
Virginia Tapes Also Showed Planned Parenthood Acting Appropriately. Tapes released from Virginia do not include any advice from the Planned Parenthood employees on how the fake pimp could help his business. Furthermore, in one of the videos, an employee at a Planned Parenthood in Falls Church tells the fake pimp that clinics report incidents of suspected statutory rape. [Media Matters, 2/4/11]
ABC: Worker At Virginia Clinic "Appears To Act Professionally And Appropriately." In a report on one of the clinics referenced by Schear, ABC News reported:
The new video was shot Jan. 12 and features the same staged scenario involving a man and woman posing as sex workers and inquiring about sexually transmitted disease (STD) testing, birth control options and abortions for underage girls.
But unlike the first video, the Richmond clinic worker appears to act professionally and appropriately, informing the couple of their legal rights to privacy under the law, regardless of their backgrounds.
"We see people from, um, every walk of life," said the clinic worker. "So, no judgment, no sharing of information, like, uh, nothing here."
The worker also laid out legal guidelines for a minor seeking an abortion, including the requirement of parental consent or permission from a judge before one can be performed.
"Our new video shows their Richmond clinic willing to aid and abet the sexual exploitation of minors and coaching a pimp about how girls as young as 14 -- 15 could circumvent parental consent laws for secret abortions," said Live Action founder Lila Rose, a former associate of controversial conservative filmmaker James O'Keefe.
Rose has asked state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli to investigate the centers to make sure they are compliant with state law. Cuccinelli's office said it had not yet received the letter.
Many states, including Virginia, require medical professionals to report evidence of alleged sex crimes involving minors. Planned Parenthood said its Virginia clinic employee immediately did so in this case. [ABC News, 2/4/11]
Planned Parenthood Fired Person On The Videos Who Acted Unprofessionally. Planned Parenthood has not condoned employees who appeared willing to help the fake pimp in his purported scheme. Rather, Planned Parenthood has done precisely the opposite, firing an employee who actually appeared to give business advice to the fake pimp. [New York Times, 2/8/11]