Summary of Make Trouble

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  • Controversial
  • Engaging
  • Insider's Take


Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards comes by her troublemaking tendencies honestly. She’s the daughter of a civil rights lawyer and the late Ann Richards, outspoken governor of Texas. Raised in progressive causes and campaigns, Cecile Richards puts her many talents to use at Planned Parenthood, defending the organization against relentless partisan attacks and creating a cornerstone institution for the feminist movement in the process. Richards details her political and moral beliefs and the campaigns and battles that shaped her life. She makes strong arguments for Planned Parenthood and for women’s health and reproductive rights. She stands firmly in the US progressive liberal tradition. While always politically neutral, getAbstract recommends her important story of activism and determination to those interested in reproductive rights, politics and women’s leadership.

About the Author

Cecile Richards has been president of both the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund since 2006. In 2010, she joined the Ford Foundation board of trustees.



Planned Parenthood Under Fire

In July 2015, anti-choice activists released a heavily edited video they said proved Planned Parenthood was illegally selling fetal tissue. Cecile Richards, president of the organization, testified before Congress that September to defend it against a well-organized smear campaign. In that moment, facing enormous hostility, Richards drew strength from thinking of her wide network of supporters, her staff and the patients Planned Parenthood serves.

Homegrown Activist

Cecile Richards grew up to be a troublemaker. Her parents David and Ann Richards were troublemakers, too. David was a civil rights lawyer, and Ann became the well-known fiery governor of Texas. Ann had organized Democratic politics in Texas. She first held elected office as a county commissioner. Politics and alcoholism strained her marriage, eventually leading to divorce. Cecile grew up campaigning, stuffing envelopes and putting up signs as part of a family committed to progressive causes. Her first act of conscientious defiance was protesting the Vietnam War by wearing a black armband...

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