Planned Parenthood protesters are bullies, not heroes

To all the pro-life protesters standing in front of Wenatchee’s Planned Parenthood (P.P.): You are not heroes — you are bullies. You are bullying women for taking care of their health. You are bullying women trying to get tested for pregnancy, STDs, and breast and cervical cancer. You are bullying women seeking affordable birth control.

I hope you have at least educated yourself and know many women take the pill not to prevent pregnancy but to help with uncomfortable periods, acne, balance hormones, and prevent certain types of cancers.

Of course, your main concern is abortion. But the local P.P. didn’t start offering abortion until this year, according to The Wenatchee World. Having grown up in the valley, I know protesters have stood in front of our PP for many, many years before this change. Why didn’t you ever park your angry signs and scowls in front of the hospital or various clinics that offer the same services as P.P.? Why are you targeting the women who choose P.P. for their affordable, quick health care?

One in five women in the U.S. will go to P.P. in their lifetime. I went when I was home from college and needed a gynecological exam within a week. My doctor at Confluence Health couldn’t see me for months. Planned Parenthood was the only place that could see me the very next day.

As I pulled into the parking lot, a man yelled at me with such hatred and disgust. He had no idea why I was going there — to get an annual exam checking for cancer — but ignorantly assumed it had to do with abortion, though the clinic did not offer abortions at the time.

He made me feel unsafe to unlock my door and leave my car. But then I realized if I drive away, he wins. So, I opened my door and marched on in.

To all the P.P. protesters — we are not going to let you win. We are going to continue marching into those clinics and receive the women’s healthcare we deserve. Your ignorance and posters can’t stop us.

Emily Cieslak

Wenatchee