The Planned Parenthood/Susan G. Komen story is another clear example of how right-wing ideology has forced its way into just about every aspect of American life. Pushing conservative social policies involves demonizing organizations like Planned Parenthood which provides vital breast cancer screenings to low-income and uninsured women.
Komen’s choosing to cease funding to Planned Parenthood because the organization is under investigation by Congress is simply another attack on women’s rights. The real reason PP is being defunded by Komen is because the latter is controlled by right-wing ideologues who have allowed politics to guide their decision making. They have given in to anti-abortion zealots who have been running a boycott campaign against Komen.
Komen has been under pressure from anti-abortion groups to drop its funding for Planned Parenthood, which received $680,000 from the anti-cancer group in 2011. Most recently, abortion foes forced a Christian publisher to stop printing pink Komen bibles and pressured bookstores to take them off shelves. Groups have also called on supporters to boycott Komen entirely, and decried the group as a “lie from the pit of Hell.”
As for those right-wing ideologues controlling Komen…
Breast cancer charity giant Susan G. Komen for the Cure on Tuesday did not renew a grant to Planned Parenthood to fund breast exams. The move comes less than a year after Komen hired a new vice president, who has publicly stated her opposition to abortion, a service provided at some Planned Parenthood facilities.
Komen’s new vice president, Karen Handel, had run for governor of Georgia in 2010 on an aggressively anti-abortion and anti-Planned Parenthood platform and was endorsed by Sarah Palin because of her opposition to reproductive choice. Handel wrote in her campaign blog that she “do[es] not support the mission of Planned Parenthood.”
Komen’s founder is pretty conservative, too. Komen CEO Nancy G. Brinker, who founded the foundation in memory of a sister who died from breast cancer, was the chief protocol officer for the United States from 2007 to 2009 under the George W. Bush administration, and before that served as his ambassador to Hungary.
Brinker is also a major Republican donor, and has given more than $175,000 to Republican candidates and the Republican National Committee since 1990…
sitting on Komen’s Advocacy Alliance Board is Jane Abraham, the General Chairman of the virulently anti-choice and anti-science Susan B. Anthony List and of its Political Action Committee. Among other involvements, Abraham helps direct the Nuturing Network, a global network of crisis pregnancy centers, organizations widely known for spreading ideology, misinformation and lies to women facing unintended pregnancy and to use both intimidation and coercion in the course of doing so.
Here’s the bottom line: given a choice between their personal agendas and helping low-income Americans deal with vital health issues, the Susan G. Komen charity made the decision to go with the former.
That Komen–an organization ostensibly dedicated to scientific exploration of cures for breast cancer–has invited on its advocacy board women so closely allied with organizations that so blatantly ignore science and medicine and spread outright lies to other women about their health and welfare speaks volumes about Komen’s ethical principles as an organization.
And as a result of Komen’s decision, women will needlessly die.
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