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The Susan G. Komen Foundation's Noble Decision to De-Fund Planned Parenthood
February 1, 2012, Rebecca Kachuriak

Update: There has been an INSANE amount of backlash in favor of Planned Parenthood in the last 48 hours.  
The SGKF's top public health official, Mollie Williams, resigned, and the National Journal reports that her former senior communications adviser says it's because she can't stay with an organization that bows to the anti-abortion right.  PP has raised over $1million online since the announcement of the SGKF defund.  SGKF's web site has been hacked, switching a banner on the organization's web site from a call for people to join a race to "help us run over poor women on the way to the bank."  You can't go on Facebook or search the news without seeing somebody comment about "poor Planned Parenthood" or the "evil Susan G. Komen Foundation" that doesn't care about women, just money.  Even Judy Blume has come out against the SGKF!  What?! Talk about Superfudge.
Also being called into question is Planned Parenthood's capacity/ability to effectively provide the breast-health services they claim to.  According to Commentary Magazine:
While debates over Planned Parenthood’s federal funding were taking place, the organization claimed that without governmental grants, women would no longer have access to “basic family planning, mammograms…” Problem is: Planned Parenthood doesn’t provide mammograms. Or advanced breast screenings. The only breast health services Planned Parenthood provides women is teaching them how to do a self-exam at home, and performing that same exam for them in the office. If any abnormality is detected, Planned Parenthood immediately refers their patient elsewhere, as they are unable to provide medical care outside of what a woman could do at home with a basic fact sheet.
Nice.  Here's the thing, now that the SGKF has roughly $680K freed up, it can direct those funds to organizations who are better equipped to fufill their mission:  Defeat breast cancer.  Looks like everyone's true motives are on the table...
Yesterday, it was announced that the Susan G. Komen Foundation  (SGKF) will be defunding Planned Parenthood. Last year they donated roughly $680,000 to the controversial organization. The public response to this decision has baffled me.  People who formerly supported SGKF are now backing away from the organization because they believe the decision was politically motivated.




 I just don't get it.


It offends me that SGKF would back an organization like Planned Parenthood. It offends others that they wouldn't. Why? My reasons are moral--I am opposed to the practice of abortion. Planned Parenthood is the nation's leading abortion provider and in NO WAY do I want to support their activities. There are plenty of other free or low-cost options out there for women to get breast cancer screenings and other healthcare.  Why does SGKF have to give money to the most controversial if, as the people who are outraged by the foundation's decision claim, this is all about breast cancer screenings and not about abortion?  Why do they have to give their money to Planned Parenthood? Would it satisfy if they gave the $680K to a different medical outfit that provided breast cancer screenings? Preferably one that is not under congressional investigation? Again, why does it have to be Planned Parenthood?


The fact that SGKF gave money to Planned Parenthood has been an issue for me in the past. It has caused me not to support their cause because they were aligned with an organization that I am morally opposed to.  Of course, I am not opposed to fighting breast cancer. I don't know anyone who is morally opposed to fighting breast cancer. My moral misgivings about Planned Parenthood outweighed my conviction to support SGKF.  I know I'm not the only one here. So now people are up in arms saying that they will be unsupportive of SGKF because of their decision.  This is crazy.  These are the same people who say that it's "just about breast screenings". If that is the truth, then this decision shouldn't matter to them!  By their actions, we can deduce that it isn't about women's healthcare or breast cancer detection, because if it were, they would continue to be supportive of the SGKF, regardless of their ties (or lack thereof) to Planned Parenthood.  Sure, they could be bummed out about it, but if it were truly NOT political to them, but only about women's health, they would continue to stand behind what the SGKF is doing.


I think it is noble of the SGKF organization to distance themselves from organizations like Planned Parenthood that are currently under congressional investigation, and that have had some particularly horrible reports come out recently with regard to covering up sex abuse. The travesty is not that Planned Parenthood won't be getting money from SGKF--I am sure that they will send their money to other organizations that exist to truly help women.  The real travesty is that the SGKF is being demonized for this decision despite all of the good that they have done for women in the fight against breast cancer. They exist to combat breast cancer--to "Fight for the Cure."  They can do this with a far greater reach and across more political boundaries because they chose to cease giving to Planned Parenthood. After all, no matter where any of us stand with regard to Planned Parenthood's practices, we would all like to see a cure to breast cancer.




 It's more than interesting to note that fundraising for SGKF has actually INCREASED 100% since their decision to cut ties with Planned Parenthood.  Just another factoid we are not likely to see anytime soon in the MSM.


- Verbatim (02/02/12 7:37 PM)

 True dat.  However, it's all over the media how much $$ Planned Parenthood is pulling in.  Poor Planned Parenthood.  I bet both organizations actuall increase in funding overall after this thing plays out.

- Rebecca Kachuriak (02/03/12 8:22 AM)

If you are really asking the question "why the backlash" I will give it to you.  My wife for about three years used Planned Parenthood as her only source for healthcare.  Planned Parenthood is not making decision based on politics, the abortion procedure is legal right now.  For them to not provide abortions would be choosing medical procedures based on politics.  If the supreme court overturns Roe v Wade, then they will stop.

So you have a twofold effect going on.  1) Many people do use Planned Parenthood for healthcare that does not include abortions.  2) Planned parenthood is not discriminating in medical procedures for women based on politics.

The backlash is because of politics being played.  The right is not using normal channels, but trying to make it more difficult to get a legal procedure done.  To win the war for real, then Roe v Wade has to be overturned.  Defunding money that goes directly to the healthcare of women is not the way to do it.  It positions SGKF to look like the bad guys even if they are not.

Now before this turns into a raging abortion debate, I just wanted to give an answer to the question.  I understand your misgivings and strong views on abortion.  Hopefully this turns "I just don't get it" to I understand at least on some level why people would feel this way. 

Just so you know, Chris Christie feels this way too.  He may have cut public funding, but he donates on a regular basis to Planned Parenthood.


- TLM (02/03/12 10:21 AM)

"A baby is a child not a choice."  I think we all would like to see women having babies that they have chosen to have and that they can provide for but that seems to be an impossible goal.  Know anyone that had a child they chose not to but decided to do the responsible thing and raise them anyway?

- Just Sayin' (02/03/12 1:03 PM)

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave the group $250,000 and pledged to give $1 for every dollar Planned Parenthood raises up to $250,000.

- Anonymous (02/03/12 1:09 PM)

I love it when liberal hypocrites like PP claim the moral high ground.  Being against breast cancer is an especially peculiar claim for a company  providing a procedure that leads to much higher risks of getting breast cancer.  That's the part that I "just don't get." 

- Stephen (02/03/12 2:35 PM)

"The right is not using normal channels, but trying to make it more difficult to get a legal procedure done.  To win the war for real, then Roe v Wade has to be overturned.  Defunding money that goes directly to the healthcare of women is not the way to do it.  It positions SGKF to look like the bad guys even if they are not." - TLM

The only ones making SGKF look like the bad guys was the left.  If you want to convince us that you are actually upset that the right is trying to make a legal procedure harder, maybe start by being upset by the 26 democrat senators who wrote SGKF a letter condemning them for dropping their PP grants.  So inexcusable!  SGKF didn't stop sending money to PP because of politics, but it was mob-like/bullying politics that got them to start up again.

- Stephen (02/03/12 4:44 PM)

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