It sounds like an Onion headline, but it’s not.
Dr. Susan Orr is the new Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of The Office of Population Affairs — she’s also a staunch birth control opponent, a supporter of the Global Gag Rule, and former senior director for marriage and family care at the right-wing Family Research Council. According to RH Reality Check,
In 2001, when President Bush proposed eliminating the requirement that federal employees’ health insurance offer a range of options for birth control coverage, Dr. Orr, then the senior director for marriage and families at the Family Research Council 4, told the Washington Post, “We’re quite pleased because fertility is not a disease. It’s not a medical necessity that you have [contraception].”
The Family Research Council, her former place of employment, describes itself as:
The Family Research Council (FRC) champions marriage and family as the foundation of civilization, the seedbed of virtue, and the wellspring of society. FRC shapes public debate and formulates public policy that values human life and upholds the institutions of marriage and the family. Believing that God is the author of life, liberty, and the family, FRC promotes the Judeo-Christian worldview as the basis for a just, free, and stable society.
and its core principles are:
* God exists and is sovereign over all creation. He created human beings in His image. Human life is, therefore, sacred and the right to life is the most fundamental of political rights.
* Life and love are inextricably linked and find their natural expression in the institutions of marriage and the family.
* Government has a duty to promote and protect marriage and family in law and public policy.
* The American system of law and justice was founded on the Judeo-Christian ethic.
* American democracy depends upon a vibrant civil society composed of families, churches, schools, and voluntary associations.
Now that’s all fine and good, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want those values regulating my access to reproductive health care.
The FRC has some awfully funny definitions of “protecting women’s health.” They are opposed Plan B (the “morning-after” pill), calling it “A grave threat to women’s health” and packing their report with medically inaccurate information and testimony from anti-choice advocates. They opposed an FDA nominee when he didn’t cave to right-wing pressure and instead respected the consensus of the medical and scientific community that abortion does not lead to breast cancer. They claim that RU-486 (the abortion pill) poses a “serious threat to women’s health.” They equate contraception with abortion. They are decidedly anti-choice.
Dr. Orr herself authored a booklet called “Building a Culture of Life” for the organization. Her opposition to contraception may very well be tied to her disdain for single mothers and women who get divorced (she also wrote a paper called “Real Women Stay Married“).
She also toes the “pro-life” line when it comes to born children — that is, she doesn’t so much care about them.
Like domestic violence programs, child protection procedures blur the distinction between therapy and law enforcement, allowing social workers to exercise police functions. “Although spoken of in terms of social services,” writes Susan Orr, “the child-protection function of child welfare is essentially a police action.” Orr calls child protection “the most intrusive arm of social services.”
She also promotes limiting definitions of abuse and neglect. And did I mention that she was the Associate Commissioner for the Children’s Bureau of the Department of Health and Human Services when she was trying to limit the power to respond to child abuse?
Not to mention that birth control actually lowers the abortion rate and outlawing abortion kills women. So her anti-contraception stance isn’t particularly “pro-life.”
In other words, she is a scary lady.
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