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Is Olivia Pope really a good role model for Black women?

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In what can only be described as tragic ignorance, Planned Parenthood’s Black Community is applauding the abortion scene in the season finale of ABC’s Scandal. Using the utterly depressing #ShoutYourAbortion hashtag, Planned Parenthood celebrates abortion as if it’s a trip to Disneyworld.

In the midst of Planned Parenthood’s rejoicing, they forgot one important thing. Olivia Pope is a flawed character that has been involved in affair with the President for most of the show. The abortion is simply another bad decision that resulted from a string of selfish actions. Her abortion is one more poor choice that shouldn’t be celebrated or emulated. One Twitter user wrote:

Only in a crazy world of double standards can a nation applaud a show that promotes adultery while condemning  real acts of adultery like the ones revealed in the Ashley Madison hack. If adultery is wrong, why do people entertain themselves with a show  based on it? In 2013, Jezebel released an article titled, “The Scandal Love Affair is More Like Emotional Abuse.” The article, written by a woman of color, describes how unhealthy the fictional romance is:

If it isn’t obvious that her romance with President Fitz Grant is unhealthy by now, drop those rose-colored Shonda Rhimes glasses and let’s walk into the light together, eh?

The writer uses the Department of Health and Human Services definition of emotional abuse to describe President Fitz Grant and Olivia Pope’s relationship. The second sign that Olivia is in a unhealthy relationship is the level of dishonesty and disrespect. Dishonesty and disrespect is defined as when one partner lies to or keeps information from the other.

Although dishonesty is an unhealthy sign in a relationship, abortion advocates applaud Olivia for aborting what was likely the President’s baby without even telling him she was pregnant.

Again, this is something that’s celebrated by the pro-choice community while they blissfully forget that Olivia is not a character viewers should emulate. Yes, they can follow her example when it comes to pursuing education and career aspirations – but when it comes to sexual relationships and the choices that follow, it’s another story. A woman making a pregnancy decision should consult the father of her preborn child. It’s wrong to abort a child, and especially wrong to not even share that with the person who helped create the child.  At this point in the show, the affair is over and the President is available for a semi-normal relationship. Yet Olivia rejects that and rejects their child. Even the star of the show, Kerry Washington (who is a supporter of Planned Parenthood), said this about her character to the LA Times:

“I’ve always thought it was really misguided when women tell me that Olivia is their role model… “Because she’s having an affair with a married man who is president of the United States. And a murderer. And they stole an election together. Well, she stole it for him.”

Later Washington said concerning Olivia Pope,

“She’s an entrepeneur, she’s very smart, she has an amazing closet, and those are all things that I think are worthy of admiration. But she is nobody’s role model.”

Hear that, Planned Parenthood? Olivia Pope is nobody’s role model. In light of Planned Parenthood’s Black community approving of her decision there are some Black Twitter users that shared their disgust over the abortion scene.

I’ve never watched Scandal because I don’t support the plot of a black woman being a mistress and wreaking havoc on a family. (If you’re looking for a great show with an amazing black actress who is a hilarious wife and mom, check out ABC’s Blackish. It gives a beautiful portrayal of the blessing of family.)

It’s good to know not everyone thinks an abortion set to the tune of Silent Night is a good idea. At the end of the day, Shonda Rhimes used her platform to make the Scandal finale one big advertisement for Planned Parenthood. That is pretty pathetic in light of Planned Parenthood’s racist history and the fact that abortion is the #1 cause of death for Black Americans.

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