Analysis

Planned Parenthood president: Anticipation of more videos is ‘water torture’

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As restraining orders seek to halt the release of more undercover videos exposing Planned Parenthood’s sale of baby parts, the abortion giant has been conspicuously absent from lawsuits against the Center for Medical Progress, the group behind the investigative videos.

The abortion giant’s president, Cecile Richards, is starting to sound nervous about what is to come, and now says she wants all of the videos released. This may show that there is not going to be a lawsuit from the organization. That remains to be seen; however, it seems to indicate the dread she feels at anticipating the soon-to-be-released videos.

Richards quoted a tweet:

The Wall Street Journal story she quotes reports on Republican efforts to defund Planned Parenthood. Most of the story reports on the politics, but the reference is a quote at the end from Arthur Caplan, head of New York University School of Medicine’s medical ethics division. Caplan says:

What is bothering me is the leaking of the tapes one at a time. If you’re concerned about what’s going on, you should release all at once. Leaking them one at a time, that’s politics. This type of water torture is to maximize political impact.

Richards shows a rare public moment of weakness here, whether she intended to or not. And the replies to her tweet showed no mercy, for the most part.

Perhaps the most ironic reply of all was this one:

If these videos are “fake” and “deceptively edited,” Richards should not care about the release timeline. And if she’s asking for them to be released at once, she may be indicating that Planned Parenthood isn’t going to sue to stop their release.

Richards tries to make it look like an accusation against Republicans playing politics, but her tweet actually shows fear.  The “water torture” —dropping one video at a time like drips in a bucket— creates a constant anticipation of the next drip. Like trying to sleep next to a dripping faucet, there is no rest. Ultimately, everyone knows that the dripping will cause the bucket to fill and then overflow. Richards knows it, too. Her tweet sounds like a desperate cry of “uncle” that she masks under the guise of sounding tough. Instead, she sounds scared.

Drip. Drip. Drip.

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