The argument goes that, because of the Hyde Amendment, “Taxpayer dollars don’t fund abortions, thus taxpayer dollars should continue to go to Planned Parenthood.” Or some nonsense like that. This is a political scam. Not to mention, now Pres. Biden, once proud defender of the Hyde Amendment, has thrown it entirely to the wayside.
Since money is fungible, it’s irrelevant how you earmark a portion of the money. The money can be exchanged and interchanged as needed. In a simple illustration we’ve demonstrated the concept of “fungibility,” but let’s break it down first.
How Fungibility Works
- You have $9 but the sandwich costs $9.50 and you’re very hungry.
- You can’t buy the sandwich with just just $9.
- I come along, see you’re hungry, and decide to give you $10 because I’m cool like that.
- I give you this money with the explicit terms you can not buy ice cream with this $10.
- You see the ice cream is $3 and remember I said you can’t use the funds I gave you to buy it.
- You use your original $9 to buy the ice cream cone
- You use the $10 I gave you to buy the sandwich, as agreed.
- You now have $6.50 leftover, an ice cream cone, and a sandwich where you otherwise would have had just your $9.
I made this illustration 7 years ago, and in retrospect, it could use a little tweaking to better communicate its point. For example, if man in the top hat (me) gave you only $6, the fungibility of the money would become clearer. While I didn’t give you enough money to completely pay for your sandwich, you could still use $3 of your funds to buy the sandwich with the funds I gave you and then use your remaining funds to buy the ice cream cone.
Relevancy to Hyde Amendment
This silly little cartoon is meant to communicate a serious implication of the Hyde Amendment and similar laws. Take this comic and replace “you” with “Planned Parenthood” (sorry, someone had to play the part), replace “me” with the “taxpayer” (hey, maybe I should have made you the taxpayer). The “sandwich” you want to pay for is your “other services” (which in reality are a smaller part of Planned Parenthood’s budget, but I digress) and the ice cream cone is abortion (eww).
The taxpayers tell Planned Parenthood not to use their money to pay for abortions, only for services like medical care and giving defective condoms to teenagers. Planned Parenthood says, “Okay!” and doesn’t directly use the money to pay for abortions, but rather exchanges the money given for money they already had to pay for abortions, and can now fund other programs with the taxpayer money they couldn’t otherwise pay for. In other words, where they otherwise would have been forced to make a decision (or cease to exist) the taxpayer has now enabled the murder-for-hire service to continue to operate.
In the end, if taxpayer money is going to Planned Parenthood — or any other abortion slaughterhouse — taxpayers are paying for the murder of preborn babies.
The Hyde Amendment is political smoke and mirrors meant to placate taxpayers while continuing to fund abortions. Don’t be deceived. Be informed. Money is fungible.