Photo Credit: YouTube
Actress Elizabeth Banks has never shied away from discussing private matters in a public forum as a means to educate people. As a guest blogger for iVillage, she’s written on the subject of birth control, including a piece in which she credits it for the birth of her son. (Incredulous? Read it here.) And now, she’s lent her image and her voice to the Obama-Biden campaign, with a new video in which she discusses her support of Planned Parenthood.
"Planned Parenthood is something I care very deeply about,” a down-to-earth Banks says in the 88-second ad. “Planned Parenthood was my healthcare provider when I didn't have insurance after graduating from college." The video already has more than 50,000 views since it was posted on YouTube yesterday by the official BarackObama.com channel.
Banks talks about the importance of the group, in particular its essential service to communities that would otherwise have no viable resources. And she talks about her personal experience with migraine headaches and a “heavy flow” (“Yeah, I’m on record saying I had a heavy flow!” she jokes), issues more appropriate to discuss with one’s doctor -- in her case, at Planned Parenthood at one time -- versus with an employer.
Taking a pointed jab at Mitt Romney, she says that the presumptive GOP nominee “is going to take away cancer screenings … he’s going to take away people’s access to health care close by” for what she characterizes as just the five percent of Planned Parenthood services that are controversial. Banks ends the spot with, “President Obama has not compromised on women’s rights, and that’s why President Obama needs to stay in office.”
In the video, Banks tackles an utterly charged, fraught topic with dignity and restraint, and makes logical, reasoned points that seem above controversy. Nevertheless, we won’t be surprised if the comment section devolves into name calling -- and even uglier language -- as it is wont to do. (Sigh.)
Alesandra Dubin is a Los Angeles-based writer. Follow her on Twitter: @alicedubin.