So there I was settling in to a calm evening of watching the hearing from the comforts of my own home. I know there will be some sparks on the Susan Garber nomination and, being the wonky blogger that I am, I was puffing away on my chocolate strawberry flavored bubble machine, waiting for surplus properties and vaping. Near the beginning of the hearing I catch something out of the corner of my ear:
Council Resolution 29-2015 a resolution confirming the appointment of Kimberly A. Hartman to the Howard County Local Children’s Board.
Now to be clear, I don’t know Ms. Hartman personally, in fact we have never met and I had never even heard her name until last night. What set sirens off in my head was when she came up to testify and introduced herself as “the Executive Director of the Columbia Pregnancy Center”.
Are you familiar with crisis pregnancy centers? They are the source behind the billboards and ads that say things like “Pregnant? Scared? We can help”. They are also the purveyors of some blatantly dishonest information and a systematic strategy to prevent woman from accessing real medical clinics with their actual doctors and complete access to legal reproductive options.
Feel free to get more information from www.itslies.org (I typed the whole thing out so you could see that the campaign against crisis pregnancy centers is called “it’s lies”.) Of course there are many other sources to find out about them and feel free to do any and all due diligence. You will excuse me though if I just skip past that (having already done it myself) and go straight to the outrage.
On a national level, the U.S. House Committee on Government Reform produced this report for Representative Waxman. Here is the highlight quote for me “[CPCs] . The vast majority of pregnancy centers contacted in this investigation misrepresented the medical consequences of abortion, . This tactic may be effective in frightening pregnant teenagers and women and discouraging abortion. But .”
This report about CPCs here in Maryland “
To be sure there will be little to no opportunity for Ms. Hartman to exercise these views or the deceptive tactics of her organization on the Local Children’s Board. That is hardly the point though. The Executive Director of Howard County’s own version of this affront to reproductive freedom SHOULD NOT be confirmed to ANY board by our County Council. To do so would be . . . not in line with our County’s values. All crisis pregnancy centers are an insult and this sort of appointment could easily serve to validate it as a community service.