Sunday, February 5, 2012

Grow a Set!

So I guess one of the advantages of writing once a week, late on Saturday night/Sunday morning, is that I get to see the stories that sprout earlier in the week and develop into a maelstrom by the time I get to sit down. It gives me the opportunity to watch the dust settle, do some research and find out what's really happening. I was lucky enough to have a good  story last week, and I'm now fortunate enough to to have it happen for consecutive weeks.  If you didn't get a chance, check out my post from last week regarding, let's call it a misinterpretation, of a recently published CDC Study. And, now, on to the big story of the last week.

It's not often I get to write about hot-button topics that may or may not be politically charged or have an impact on the lives of so many people.  The bottom line is that most of the issues out there that fall into these categories have nothing to do with parenting, not that this week's post necessarily does. But the subject today does affect parents, as well as single women.  Earlier this week, Susan G. Komen for the Cure announced that it was discontinuing it's support for Planned Parenthood's Breast Cancer Screening Program. The foundation adopted a new rule, only affecting future grant applicants, that prohibits the funding of "organizations under investigation", which is a category that Planned Parenthood would currently fall under. However, the organization only falls under that category because it is being investigated by a lone Republican member of the House of Representatives because he wants to know if they have used public funds to help pay for abortions. The rule is understandable, but to have it affect an organization under investigation by a single politician for something unrelated to what the Foundation stands for is ridiculous. Grants only last so long and must be reapplied for at some point, so, while the new rule doesn't affect Planned Parenthood now, it could in the future.

While doing research on this topic, I also came to find out that the Foundation recently appointed a new Vice President for Public Policy, Karen Handel. Go ahead, click on her name. It will take you to the Wikipedia page dedicated to her. Did you read it? Did you see where it says she blatantly lied about being a member of The Log Cabin Republicans? That, after the Atlanta Journal-Constitution published the membership log and called her out, that she stated she did not support gay marriage and that gay people are not legitimate parents? How about where it says since she is "pro-life, she does not support the mission of Planned Parenthood"? Apparently there's nothing about this whack-o that isn't politically charged.  Also, I allege that she is illiterate, considering she's not even familiar with Planned Parenthood's Mission Statement.

Apparently Susan G. Komen for the Cure (which is a word that even the founder apparently has a hard time saying according to her back story) has also felt pressure from some other groups who are hard-core pro-life activists. One group of Christians went so far as to pull Komen's pink Bibles of their shelves when they learned of the funding provided to Planned Parenthood. When I think of Planned Parenthood, abortion is not the first thing that comes to mind. The first things I think of are Health Care and Education. Sex Education. Pregnancy prevention. STD testing and awareness. That is what Planned Parenthood means to me.

One last thing before I wrap up. Could this be true? The end of the article says they deny having any partnerships with firearms manufacturers, but Ms. Handel has denied more damaging things in the past. And so what if they did partner up and and are accepting funds from the sales of pink handguns? I mean, they sell ties with pink ribbons on them and there are women out there who buy firearms. I'm just saying.

The bottom line is this: the Board of Directors at Komen hired their new VP for PP for a reason. I know she successfully directed a Chamber of Commerce through a difficult financial time, but you need to do more research. My guess is that she lied on her application and nobody caught it, they were just happy to see someone so qualified for the position. And I could care less about Komen founder Nancy Brinker's affiliation with the Bush family, that means nothing to me. The Komen Foundation needs to grow a set and stand up to the pro-life groups. All money that Planned Parenthood receives from Komen goes directly to breast exams and treatment. There are laws that prohibit these and all other public funds received from going towards abortions. In fact, during the time that the Foundation pulled it's funding, Planned Parenthood received "hundreds of thousands" of dollars in individual donations not including a donation from oil magnate Lee Fikes and his wife Amy of $250,000. These donations easily make up for what Komen usually gives to Planned Parenthood in a year. I know that the funding has been restored and I've seen that the Organization "looks forward to continuing our partnership with Komen partners". But I said it on a friend's Facebook page, and I'll say it again here: "If I were the Director of Planned Parenthood, I would tell Komen to kiss my ass." Especially with the outpouring of support from the general public.

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