A left-wing, George Soros-funded media organization in the United Kingdom, called openDemocracy, has just released a hit piece falsely accusing PRI of “subvert[ing] democracy” in Europe. This is nothing more than an attempt to smear the good work that Population Research Institute (PRI) and other Christian, pro-life, and pro-family organizations in the U.S. do on that continent.
OpenDemocracy’s report alleges that PRI, along with other Christian and pro-life organizations, is funneling so-called “dark money” into Europe because we do not disclose the names of our donors. Altogether, Christian and pro-life organizations have sent over $51 million dollars of “dark money” to Europe since 2008, they claim.
The left-wing group further implies that U.S.-based organizations seeking to promote a pro-life or pro-family message are engaged in “subvert[ing] democracy.” A group of members of the European Parliament cited in the report spitefully refers to the work of PRI and other pro-life and Christian organizations in Europe as “nefarious outside influences.”
This is all nonsense.
For over two decades, PRI has sought to defend the rights and dignity inherent to each and every person. From exposing human rights abuses in coercive population control programs like China’s one-child policy to unveiling the myth of overpopulation and defending the right to life of the unborn, PRI has steadfastly upheld fundamental human rights and the culture of life.
PRI’s impact and reach has been influential in countries across the globe. Our international outreach and influence have infuriated those on the left, like openDemocracy, who seek to undermine the right to life and traditional family values.
Like many Christian and pro-life non-profits, PRI does not disclose the names of its donors. We have adopted this policy in order to protect the safety, privacy, and anonymity of our donors. We note that the U.S. Government has never required 501(c)3 non-profit organizations to make public the names of their donors, meaning that it is fully permissible under federal law for a 501(c)3 to keep its donor lists private.
“We are very proud of what we have been able to accomplish in Europe and elsewhere,” says PRI President Steven Mosher, “We have helped local pro-life, pro-family groups defend the right to life and traditional family values.”
“PRI is largely supported by small donations from individuals who wish to support our mission to defend the rights of the voiceless,” Mosher continued. “Unlike some NGOs, we receive no government funding.”
The report’s allegation that PRI’s work in Europe “subvert[s] democracy” is precisely the opposite of the truth. Instead, PRI fosters democracy through dialogue and advocacy defending the fundamental right to life and traditional family values. Over the years, we have provided technical assistance and training to pro-life and other like-minded organizations in Europe who approach us seeking to make their messaging more effective.
It is revealing that one of PRI’s critics quoted in the openDemocracy report is none other than Caroline Hickson, Regional Director for the European branch of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF-EN).
“The scale of this meddling by US extremists is shocking,” Hickson was quoted in the report, “This is utterly at odds with the European values of democracy and human rights.”
Yet, the parent organization for Hickson’s own organization—IPPF—spends millions of dollars every year in foreign countries all over the world performing abortions, providing contraception, and advocating for the legalization of abortion.
According IPPF’s 2017 financial statements, IPPF provided $51 million in grants to its subsidiaries and partnering organizations across the globe. That is to say, in one year alone, IPPF spent more money performing and promoting abortion and contraception than all U.S. Christian and pro-life organizations spent in Europe over the past 10 years combined.
Add on top of this the fact that IPPF often promotes loosening restrictions on abortion in countries where the population is generally opposed to abortion on moral grounds. If ever there was “meddling” “at odds” with “human rights,” IPPF’s promotion of terminating the lives of the unborn is certainly it.
OpenDemocracy’s allegations are hypocritical given that a substantial proportion of openDemocracy’s own revenue comes from left-wing philanthropic organizations in the United States. Its funders include George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, the Ford Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and the Tides Foundation. The U.S.-based Wallace Global Fund was also a significant donor for openDemocracy’s 50.50 project which produced the report.
According to openDemocracy’s website, U.S.-based organizations gave openDemocracy at least £900,000 ($1.1 million) from 2017-2018. Of this, openDemocracy received over $340,000 from the Open Society Foundations, George Soros’ philanthropic organization, alone.
While openDemocracy implies that U.S. Christian and pro-life organizations are “nefarious outside influences,” openDemocracy itself promotes messaging within the U.K. and abroad supported substantially through “outside influences.”
And indeed, it is openDemocracy’s messaging, not PRI’s, that is “nefarious.” OpenDemocracy’s stance on a variety of issues falls far outside the mainstream. A simple perusal of openDemocracy’s own website reveals that they advocate for extreme positions on the fringe left including legalized prostitution, abortion on demand, and transgenderism. OpenDemocracy also regularly attempts to portray pro-family countries like Ukraine in a poor light on account of the fact that the people there are generally opposed to gender ideology laws and so-called same-sex ‘marriage.’
Overall, it would seem openDemocracy is guilty of willingly receiving precisely what it accuses us of providing: foreign money to promote what would be considered “nefarious outside influenc[e].”
While PRI works to empower Europeans who want our help and share our pro-life values, openDemocracy is fundamentally seeking to transform European society in its own radical left-wing image.
If that isn’t nefarious, what is?