On Friday, the group Personhood USA, which has been behind some of the most radical anti-abortion legislation in the country, published a piece on BuzzFeed titled “8 Outrageous Things Planned Parenthood Was Caught Doing.”
The list detailed some of the most controversial “sting operations” carried out at Planned Parenthoods around the country, though all of the “outrageous things” on the list have been addressed by the organization, or debunked. One of the claims, for example, is that Planned Parenthood earmarks money to abort black babies. The only evidence Personhood has to support that, though, is that the group Live Action once conducted a “sting operation” in which it tried to entrap a Planned Parenthood employee, recording her as a planted person asked to donate only to an African-American woman.
Personhood USA is the organization behind efforts in several states, often ballot initiatives, to define life as beginning at conception. The group was largely unsuccessful at the effort last election cycle, but has renewed its push in the last few weeks, gearing up for the Fall.
Presumably to appeal to a younger crowd as part of the effort, it began publishing list via the BuzzFeed community network. Its anti-Planned Parenthood list was Personhood’s seventh piece on the platform.
A spokesperson for BuzzFeed said community publishing is largely unregulated, but that staff there is “in the process of figuring out where and whether we should draw lines about what’s appropriate on what we conceived as an open platform, like Facebook and Twitter.”
“It’s an interesting, and complicated, question but we’re inclined to leave the platform as open as possible,” spokesperson Ashley McCollum said. She also specified that BuzzFeed has no financial relationship with Personhood USA.
BuzzFeed did add a disclaimer to Personhood USA’s piece, stipulating that “Community posts are made by members of the community, and are not vetted or endorsed by BuzzFeed.” This in return sparked the ire of the anti-choice group, which issued a press release fuming over BuzzFeed’s disclaimed on their “now-viral” post.