By Diana Pearl
Crowdfunding for everyone—except women seeking abortions
We live in a world where the Internet has become an appropriate place to ask for people anything—restaurant recommendations, extra concert tickets, and of course, funding for your latest project, charitable endeavor or even, a medical procedure. As medical bills pile up, people have started to turn to crowd-funding websites like Kickstarter or GoFundMe to ease the expensive burden.
One Illinois woman took to GoFundMe, a site self-described as a place for 'personal emergencies,' for that exact purpose—but for a more controversial procedure. She started a campaign on the crowd funding site to raise money for an abortion. Soon after she posted the campaign, GoFundMe pulled the campaign because it contained "subject matter that GoFundMe would rather not be associated with." Previously, GoFundMe allowed other campaigns that dealt with sensitive subjects on a "case-by-case basis," representatives from the site told Salon. Now, in the site's recently revised guidelines, it states that all abortion-related fundraisers are banned. But this ban has a double standard: Anti-abortion campaigns still exist on the site. So it's only the pro-choice side of the debate that GoFundMe "would rather not be associated with."
Though controversial, the idea of crowd funding an abortion isn't actually so out there. If GoFundMe is going to block abortion fundraising, they need to play fair and forbid anti-abortion fundraising too.
Diana is a producer at ELLE.com. She previously wrote for MarieClaire.com. Diana is a Syracuse grad and a Chicago native, and therefore a pro at dealing with cold weather. She's also an Anglophile, which means she love all things British—especially Downton Abbey, London, and Will and Kate (and Prince George!)
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