Fort Worth’s new Planned Parenthood center would have stopped offering abortions if the new Texas abortion law had gone into effect this week. A federal judge ruled that certain new abortion restrictions passed by the Texas Legislature are unconstitutional and should not take effect. Outside the center, reviews were mixed.
Shortly after the judge’s ruling, Gary Garland stood vigil outside. Clutching prayer beads, he wanted this place closed.
“I'm praying to help change hearts and minds about abortion,” he said.
He’s one of the quiet protestors involved with “40 Days For Life,” a religion-based effort to end abortion. Garland said he wishes the new Texas law had fully gone into effect.
“Because that would help to reduce the number of abortions, hoping to bring an end to it. I don’t believe they’re here to offer other services to women.”
But clinic user Jazz Brown said she comes here only for those other services. She just came from a check-up, her two youngsters in her car’s backseat.
“I think they should stay open because it’s affordable and it’s just a place you can just come,” Brown said. “And it’s for birth control and all that too. They do check-ups for well women exams, your breast exams, you can do all HIV testing, get your birth control pills. So it is a lot more than they do than abortions.”
In fact, says Brown, she doesn’t believe in abortion. Yet she says the judge did the right thing.
CORRECTION: In the audio and the original online version of this story, KERA incorrectly reported that the Fort Worth Planned Parenthood Health Center would have closed if Texas' new abortion restrictions had fully gone into effect. Planned Parenthood says the center would have remained open; it would have been forced to stop providing abortion services. We've re-edited the story to reflect this.