Seven inches: Artists fundraise for Planned Parenthood

Lisa Neff, Staff writer

New polling shows you are in the majority if you stand with Planned Parenthood.

And the new “7 inches for Planned Parenthood” campaign reveals the many musicians, writers, comics and visual artists who support one of the leading providers of affordable health care in the nation — and a crucial care provider for women.

Dozens of musicians and comics have created a series of 7-inch vinyl records and digital downloads, with plans to release the vinyl in a box set and the digital tunes in batches online.

Visual artists worked to created images to pair with each record in the collection.

Participating performers include Wisconsin’s own Bon Iver, Margaret Cho, John Legend, Mary J. Blige, Common and Zach Galifianakis.

The creative collective behind the effort, in a statement issued April 10, said, “This curated series of 7-inch vinyl records is being made by a group of people who believe that access to health care is a public good that should be protected. Do we know there’s a joke in the name? We do. We hope the title evokes the rich history of 7-inch vinyl records as a medium of protest music and resistance.”

Campaign targets vast, supportive audience

So who’s the audience for the “7 inches” project?

It’s more efficient to ask, “who isn’t?” — new polling shows 74 percent of Americans oppose efforts that interfere with women accessing birth control, cancer screenings and other “well-woman” care at Planned Parenthood. The poll by PerryUndem also shows 57 percent of Donald Trump’s voters oppose such interference with care.

And yet, April 13 — two days after the announcement of the “7 inches” campaign — Trump signed a measure overturning an Obama-era rule that required state and local governments to distribute federal dollars for family planning services to qualified health providers — regardless of whether the providers also provided abortion services.

The measure Trump signed allows states to deny family planning money to abortion providers, including Planned Parenthood clinics. It does not “defund” Planned Parenthood, but could lead states to block access to health care through Title X at any women’s clinics.

Vice President Mike Pence cast the tiebreaking vote in the Senate advancing the measure.

Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said the organization has “stood defiantly in the face of opposition for a century and we’re not backing down now.”

She also thanked the “7 inches” artists for the fundraising and advocacy campaign.

“We’re incredibly grateful to have the support of so many artists and entertainers, many of them who have themselves relied on us for health care,” Richards said.

Wide range of campaign contributors

Other musical and comedic contributors to “7 inches for Planned Parenthood” include: Aparna Nancherla, Bjork, Bryce Dessner, CHVRCHES, Dr. Willie Parker, Dream Hampton, Elliott Smith, Estelle, Feist, Foo Fighters, Heather McGhee, Helado Negro, Janeane Garafalo, Jenny Slate, Jon Brion, Laurie Anderson, Margaret Atwood, Mary Lattimore, Matt Berninger, Meg Baird, Mitski, Nico Muhly, Pete Holmes, Sarah Silverman, Sharon Van Etten, Sleater-Kinney, St. Vincent, and Tig Notaro.

Contributing visual artists include: Angela Pilgrim, Azar Kazimir, Domonique Echeverria, Hisham Akira Bharoocha, Jacqui Oakley, James Merry, Mark Fox, Megan Tatem, Milly Schiot, Penelope Gazin, Rashid Johnson, Shepard Fairey, and William Villalongo.

On the web

For more information, go to 7inchesforplannedparenthood on Facebook. And to get involved in the campaign on social media, use #IStandWithPP.

By the numbers

A Fox News poll shows 57 percent of U.S. adults have a favorable view of Planned Parenthood.

A Kaiser Family Foundation poll found 75 percent of U.S. adults, including a majority of Republicans, support federal Medicaid reimbursement for Planned Parenthood to provide birth control, STD testing and cancer screenings.

A PerryUndem poll found 74 percent of Americans oppose cutting government money to Planned Parenthood.

This poll also found:

  • 55 percent oppose banning Medicaid coverage for abortion care.
  • 63 percent oppose restricting access to abortion care.
  • 71 percent believe access to affordable birth control is an equality issue.
  • 87 percent want to keep the Affordable Care Act provision prohibiting insurance companies from charging women more than men.

On the calendar

Planned Parenthood holds a once-in-a-lifetime gala in New York City May 2. During the “100 Years Strong: The Celebration of a Century” gala, PP will present the Champion of the Century Award to Hillary Clinton for her 40 years of service to women and girls. PP will present the Champion of Change Award to Shonda Rhimes for revolutionizing the way women and issues of reproductive health are portrayed on TV.