Commentary

Hero of 'Unplanned' Takes the High Road with Message to Recently Terminated PP CEO

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Dr. Leana Wen, the 36-year-old president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, is now the 36-year-old former president and CEO of Planned Parenthood. She was officially canned by the organization on Tuesday for a number of reasons, primary among them that she didn’t push the organization’s political agenda hard enough.

There were plenty of morbid jokes on Twitter, the best one coming from comedian and recently demonetized YouTuber Steven Crowder: “Planned Parenthood just aborted its CEO at 43 weeks.” (Wen had only been appointed to the position in September.)

However, there was a note of support from a surprising source: Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood clinic director whose defection from the organization and subsequent pro-life activity became the basis for the film “Unplanned.”

For those of you who hadn’t followed the saga, Wen announced her sudden departure in a Twitter post in which she said the decision was made by Planned Parenthood officials behind closed doors.

“I just learned that the @PPFA Board ended my employment at a secret meeting,” she tweeted late Tuesday afternoon. “We were engaged in good faith negotiations about my departure based on philosophical differences over the direction and future of Planned Parenthood. My statement to come shortly.”

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Johnson, of course, had worked with Planned Parenthood for some time before having her eyes opened to the reality of abortion. Her story now forms the backbone of “Unplanned,” the surprise Christian film hit that’s created no small amount of controversy.

On Twitter, Johnson told Wen she was familiar with the process and offered her sympathy.

“Leana, I know exactly how Planned Parenthood works and know ALL about their secret meetings,” Johnson wrote. “If you ever want to talk about your experience (in complete confidence), I’m here. I will help in any way I can through your transition.”

Most of the responses on Twitter were positive.

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There were plenty of negative tweets, too — a large number of which I can’t actually embed here due to the language which, what a surprise.

One user pointed out that there would be a non-disclosure agreement, something that Johnson responded to.

Now, would Wen talk to Johnson? Hard to say.

Do you think that Planned Parenthood should be defunded?

Wen’s statement upon leaving made it clear she still agreed with Planned Parenthood’s mission, just that she was kicked out because she wanted to focus on the health care element of the group’s mission as opposed to the political one.

Wen said in her statement that she felt “the best way to protect abortion care is to be clear that it is not a political issue but a health care one, and that we can expand support for reproductive rights by finding common ground with the large majority of Americans who understand reproductive health care as the fundamental health care that it is.

“I am leaving because the new Board Chairs and I have philosophical differences over the direction and future of Planned Parenthood.”

However, Johnson put the offer out there, which is critical.

After all, the important thing is to talk with our ideological opponents, even if we cannot convert them. That’s what we do in a civil society.

Both individuals, it seems, have experience with how Planned Parenthood operates behind closed doors. That’s a shared experience that could open some doors.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal for four years.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal for four years. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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