Komen prioritizes: politics over the cure
Published: Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 01:09
Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the largest most well-funded anti-breast-cancer organization in the United States, faced severe public backlash when it pulled funding for Planned Parenthood breast cancer screenings.
Komen raises tens of millions of dollars every year, and that money comes from ordinary people making donations. Donors who contribute funds to Komen trust the organization to use their money to fund programs that prevent breast cancer.
Along with many other donors, I was appalled to discover that Komen would make such a blatant political statement by refusing to fund affordable access to breast cancer screenings for impoverished women.
It turns out that Karen Handel, Komen’s vice president of public policy, is staunchly anti-abortion. Handel apparently couldn’t keep her political views separate from her job, and her misjudgment has cost Komen its integrity, not to mention the loyalty of many donors, including myself.
According to the Huffington Post, Handel specifically crafted plans to defund Planned Parenthood so as not to appear political. This effort was conniving and deceiving, to say the least. Handel was solely in charge of drafting guidelines that prevented Komen from funding any organization under investigation by government authorities of any level.
This automatically disqualified Planned Parenthood from receiving funding. A source who asked to remain anonymous told the Huffington Post that “[Handel] said, ‘If we just say it’s about investigations, we can defund Planned Parenthood and no one can blame us for being political.’” That statement alone reveals Handel’s true intent.
Many people who are pro-life want to defund Planned Parenthood because it’s the Unites States’ leading abortion provider. But Planned Parenthood provides much more than just that: it is a healthcare provider for women who can’t afford medical services elsewhere. It’s a vital health resource for impoverished women as well as men.
The move to defund Planned Parenthood was clearly a spiteful political one. It’s just plain fucked up to prevent women with limited funds from accessing breast cancer screenings. So as long as employees of Susan G. Komen for the Cure put their political interests above the needs of these women, my donations will be going elsewhere.