Wednesday, February 01, 2012

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure. For Some, Not For All.

You probably already heard that Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the largest breast-cancer charity in the country, has decided to defund Planned Parenthood:
According to the AP, the move will mean “a cutoff of hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants, mainly for breast exams.”Planned Parenthood confirms that Komen is the first, and only, organization to cut off funding since the Congress began debating the issue in earnest last winter.

Komen said it could not continue to fund Planned Parenthood because it has adopted new guidelines that bar it from funding organizations under congressional investigation. The House oversight and investigations subcommittee announced in the fall an investigation into Planned Parenthood’s funding.
The linked source suggests that Kamen folded under Republican hammering about abortion and Planned Parenthood and so on. And perhaps that is the case.

On the other hand, one of the top officers at Susan G. Komen for the Cure is Karen Handel, the senior vice-president of public policy. She is known for her forced-birth views. When she unsuccessfully ran in the Republican primaries for the governorship of Georgia she wrote this on her campaign site:
I believe that each and every unborn child has inherent dignity, that every abortion is a tragedy, and that government has a role, along with the faith community, in encouraging women to choose life in even the most difficult of circumstances. And while I will not seek to prohibit abortions in the extremely rare cases of rape, incest, or where there is a real threat to the life of the mother, I will do everything in my power to encourage and promote alternatives to abortion in these tragic situations. In this respect, I strongly support the noble work of crisis-pregnancy centers across the state and those who compassionately and lovingly counsel women on a daily basis.  Finally, I oppose embryonic stem cell research, which creates life solely for the purpose of destroying it. I do, however, strongly support adult stem cell research, which has produced numerous scientific achievements without terminating innocent lives in the process.
My opponents have recently recycled old attacks against me concerning Fulton County’s funding of some programs through Planned Parenthood.  They are doing so without providing any context and continue to omit several key and important facts.  First, let me be clear, since I am pro-life, I do not support the mission of Planned Parenthood. During my time as Chairman of Fulton County, there were federal and state pass-through grants that were awarded to Planned Parenthood for breast and cervical cancer screening, as well as a “Healthy Babies Initiative.”  The grant was authorized, regulated, administered and distributed through the State of Georgia.  Because of the criteria, regulations and parameters of the grant, Planned Parenthood was the only eligible vendor approved to meet the state criteria. Additionally, none of the services in any way involved abortions or abortion-related services.  In fact, state and federal law prohibits the use of taxpayer funds for abortions or abortion related services and I strongly support those laws.  Since grants like these are from the state I’ll eliminate them as your next Governor.

Bolds are mine.

Planned Parenthood is an important source of reproductive health care checkups for lower-income women, including breast examinations. Does Komen have an alternative plan to make sure that the necessary screening services that would be cut by this defunding are still available in those communities? I wonder.