Susan Michelle Tyrrell

Is Komen stopping funding Planned Parenthood?: maybe, but let’s wait and see

Susan Michelle Tyrrell
By Susan Michelle Tyrrell
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December 5, 2011 (Bound4Life.org) - Life Decisions International (LDI) has done a valuable service to the pro-life community by spending its time and resources to expose those corporations that fund Planned Parenthood. It publishes a list of corporations and also includes a “dishonorable mentions” portion in which it lists the names of charitable organizations which support abortion in some way: but a recent announcement must cause us to pause and wait for a conclusion before acting.

One of the most prominent names on the “dishonorable mention” list was removed briefly last week, but with no clear explanation of why. The Susan G. Komen Foundation has been funding Planned Parenthood through many of its affiliates for several years. Despite research that links abortion to breast cancer, Komen has discounted this and continued to fund the abortion provider. While the breast cancer organization says that it only donates money for cancer screenings, we know that that’s an impossible task because funds are fungible - that is, easily movable and interchanged. If we give Planned Parenthood money for one thing, it simply frees up other money designated toward that thing for more abortions. Thus, it’s been without excuse that Komen has funded the abortion giant.

Without much explanation LDI announced Thursday night that it had removed Komen—at least temporarily:

Corporations are added to The Boycott List if they refuse to stop funding Planned Parenthood. Corporations may be removed from The Boycott List if they: 1) agree to make the pro-abortion group ineligible for donations in the future; or 2) have not funded Planned Parenthood for at least five years.

Then LDI explains this:

The Susan G. Komen Foundation was placed in this section because it has allowed affiliates to make grants to Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood received nearly $700,000 from Komen affiliates this year alone. The Foundation has recently informed us that Planned Parenthood is now ineligible for grants because it is under investigation by the U.S. government and several state governments.

The press release goes on to explain the background that when AT&T stopped funding Planned Parenthood in 1990 it was publicly targeted by its president then as having “caved in to anti-choice extremists” and of “catering to a close-minded minority intolerant of differing ideas…” LDI says it subsequently changed its policy to avoid corporations being targeted this way by not publicizing openly why they stopped funding Planned Parenthood.

LDI says:

Unfortunately, there is actually one more downside to the new policy. In keeping with our promise to corporate leaders we cannot discuss the reason(s) why an entity was removed from The Boycott List. We yield instead to the individual corporations/organizations and we will never dispute what they say. This means no one outside of our national headquarters will know the whole story behind changes made to The Boycott List. But we can assure every pro-life activist—especially LDI Partners—that changes are made only when we are 100 percent sure it is the right thing to do. We know this is somewhat frustrating. But please keep in mind that if the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation deserved to be included in The Boycott List, it would still be there. Our standards, faithfulness and commitment are both clear and consistently applied. Moreover, integrity is the most important aspect of our work. Therefore, there is reason to celebrate. Just do not do it too loudly.

If there truly were reason to celebrate, I would have liked to know more. Abortion thrives on secrecy; we need truth.  It would be with great rejoicing that I honored Komen for removing its funds from the abortion giant, but so far we can’t conclude this. While LDI’s initial report said because of investigations Planned Parenthood was ineligible for grants, the same week this story ran in Orange County, CA, which includes the list of recipients of Komen grants. Komen of Orange County confirmed that it gave grants to Planned Parenthood Friday morning, after Komen apparently said Planned Parenthood was no longer eligible to receive them. According to Komen:

“A representative from Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties was in attendance this morning [Friday] to accept two grants; one from the Komen Fund for Breast Health Care and another Community Grant for its “Breast Health Program.” We hope you were able to join us to enjoy the presentation and great keynote discussion with Susan G. Komen for the Cure.” -Elizabeth Thompson, president, Susan G. Komen for the Cure

(You can also see Planned Parenthood listed on KomenOC’s blog here.)

I want to celebrate, but I don’t want to celebrate prematurely or falsely. So far, we’ve seen no evidence from Komen that it will cease funding Planned Parenthood, and, in fact, the day after the initial announcement ran, it funded Planned Parenthood again, so we can’t yet consider it “clean.” Also, we have to remember that if the only reason to cease funding is that Planned Parenthood is under investigation, that doesn’t mean it won’t receive grants already applied for or that it won’t again.

When Komen announces it has stopped funding Planned Parenthood once and for all, then we should celebrate. If we get statements from other pro-life groups who also investigate this matter, such as Texas Right to Life, which produced Pink Ribbon Scandal and called for Komen to stop, let’s celebrate. Until then, we should be cautious. In fact, Rachel Bohannon who is managing the petition to Komen to stop Planned Parenthood funding in the Texas Right to Life Pink Ribbon scandal says:

To my knowledge, Komen’s most recent statements regarding PP can be found here:  We’re planning to forge ahead with our petition and efforts to get the mainstream media involved

Abortion funding is serious business, allowing Planned Parenthood to build big centers and kill little babies. We should remain cautious on all fronts.  Meanwhile, a day after its press release, LDI issued this statement:

The Komen matter is on hold until we investigate the recent allegations that it is involved in supporting embryonic stem cell research.

LDI has not recanted its statement on Komen funding, and perhaps indeed is there change forthcoming, but until we hear it from Komen that they no longer support Planned Parenthood or embryonic stem cell research, the only pro-life action we can take is to continue to send money for breast cancer research to other outlets. For breast cancer providers who do not fund abortion, see the bottom of this link.

Reprinted with permission from Bound4Life.com

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Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin

PBS defends decision to air pro-abortion documentary ‘After Tiller’

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By Dustin Siggins

Under pressure for showing the pro-abortion documentary "After Tiller" on Labor Day, PBS' "POV" affiliate has defended the decision in response to an inquiry from LifeSiteNews.

The producers of the film say their goal with the documentary, which tells the stories of four late-term abortion doctors after the killing of infamous late-term abortionist George Tiller, is to "change public perception of third-trimester abortion providers by building a movement dedicated to supporting their right to work with a special focus on maintaining their safety.” 

POV told LifeSiteNews, "We do believe that 'After Tiller' adds another dimension to an issue that is being debated widely." Asked if POV will show a pro-life documentary, the organization said that it "does not have any other films currently scheduled on this issue. POV received almost 1000 film submissions each year through our annual call for entries and we welcome the opportunity to consider films with a range of points of view."

When asked whether POV was concerned about alienating its viewership -- since PBS received millions in federal tax dollars in 2012 and half of Americans identify as pro-life -- POV said, "The filmmakers would like the film to add to the discussion around these issues. Abortion is already a legal procedure."

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"This is an issue that people feel passionately about and will have a passionate response to. We are hopeful that the majority of people can see it for what it is, another lens on a very difficult issue." 

In addition to the documentary, POV has written materials for community leaders and teachers to share. A cursory examination of the 29-page document, which is available publicly, appears to include links to outside sources that defend Roe v. Wade, an examination of the constitutional right to privacy, and "a good explanation of the link between abortion law and the right to privacy," among other information.

Likewise, seven clips recommended for student viewing -- grades 11 and beyond -- include scenes where couples choose abortion because the children are disabled. Another shows pro-life advocates outside a doctor's child's school, and a third is described as showing "why [one of the film's doctors] chose to offer abortion services and includes descriptions of what can happen when abortion is illegal or unavailable, including stories of women who injured themselves when they tried to terminate their own pregnancies and children who were abused because they were unwanted."

Another clip "includes footage of protesters, as well as news coverage of a hearing in the Nebraska State Legislature in which abortion opponents make reference to the idea that a fetus feels pain." The clip's description fails to note that it is a scientifically proven fact that unborn children can feel pain.

The documentary is set to air on PBS at 10 p.m. Eastern on Labor Day.

Kirsten Andersen contributed to this article.

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He defended ‘real’ marriage, and then was beheaded for it

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By Pete Baklinski

A Christian man was executed during the night by a high-profile ruler after making an uncompromising defense of real marriage.

The Christian, who was renowned for his holiness, had told the ruler in public that his relationship with his partner was “against the law” of God. The Christian’s words enraged the ruler’s partner who successfully plotted to have him permanently silenced.

John the Baptist was first imprisoned before he was beheaded. The Catholic Church honors him today, August 29, as a martyr and saint.

While John’s death happened a little less than 2,000 years ago, his heroic stance for real marriage is more pertinent today than ever before.

According to the Gospel of Mark, the ruler Herod had ‘married’ his brother’s wife Herodias. When John told Herod with complete frankness, “It is against the law for you to have your brother’s wife,” Herodias became “furious” with him to the point of wanting him killed for his intolerance, bullying, and hate-speech.

Herodias found her opportunity to silence John by having her daughter please Herod during a dance at a party. Herod offered the girl anything she wanted. The daughter turned to her mother for advice, and Herodias said to ask for John’s head on a platter.

Those who fight for real marriage today can learn three important lessons from John’s example.

  1. Those proudly living in ungodly and unnatural relationships — often referred to in today’s sociopolitical sphere as ‘marriage’ — will despise those who tell them what they are doing is wrong. Real marriage defenders must expect opposition to their message from the highest levels.
  2. Despite facing opposition, John was not afraid to defend God’s plan for marriage in the public square, even holding a secular ruler accountable to this plan. John, following the third book of the Hebrew Bible (Leviticus 20:21), held that a man marrying the wife of his brother was an act of “impurity” and therefore abhorrent to God. Real marriage defenders must boldly proclaim today that God is the author of marriage, an institution he created to be a life-long union between one man and one woman from which children arise and in which they are best nurtured. Marriage can be nothing more, nothing less.
  3. John did not compromise on the truth of marriage as revealed by God, even to the point of suffering imprisonment and death for his unpopular position. Real marriage defenders must never compromise on the truth of marriage, even if the government, corporate North America, and the entire secular education system says otherwise. They must learn to recognize the new “Herodias” of today who despises those raising a voice against her lifestyle. They must stand their ground no matter what may come, no matter what the cost.

John the Baptist was not intolerant or a bigot, he simply lived the word of God without compromise, speaking the word of truth when it was needed, knowing that God’s way is always the best way. Were John alive today, he would be at the forefront of the grassroots movement opposing the social and political agenda to remake marriage in the image of man.

Click "like" if you want to defend true marriage.

If he were alive today he might speak simple but eloquent words such as, “It is against God’s law for two men or two women to be together as a husband and wife in marriage. Marriage can only be between a man and a woman.” 

He would most likely be hated. He would be ridiculed. He would surely have the human rights tribunals throwing the book at him. But he would be speaking the truth and have God as his ally. 

The time may not be far off when those who defend real marriage, like John, will be presented with the choice of following Caesar or making the ultimate sacrifice. May God grant his faithful the grace to persevere in whatever might come. St. John the Baptist, pray for us!

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The Wunderlich family Mike Donnelly / Home School Legal Defence Association
Thaddeus Baklinski Thaddeus Baklinski Follow Thaddeus

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German homeschoolers regain custody of children, vow to stay and fight for freedom

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By Thaddeus Baklinski

One year to the day since a team of 20 social workers, police officers, and special agents stormed a homeschooling family’s residence near Darmstadt, Germany, and forcibly removed all four of the family’s children, aged 7 to 14, a state appeals court has returned custody of the children to their parents.

The reason given for the removal was that parents Dirk and Petra Wunderlich continued to homeschool their children in defiance of a German ban on home education.

The children were returned three weeks after being taken, following an international outcry spearheaded by the Home School Legal Defense Association.

However, a lower court imposed the condition on the parents that their children were required to attend state schools in order for them to be released, and took legal custody of the children in order to prevent the family from leaving the country.

In a decision that was still highly critical of the parents and of homeschooling, the appeals court decided that the action of the lower court in putting the children in the custody of the state was “disproportional” and ordered complete custody returned to the parents, according to a statement by the HSLDA.

The Wunderlichs, who began homeschooling again when the court signaled it would rule this way, said they were very pleased with the result, but noted that the court’s harsh words about homeschooling indicated that their battle was far from over.

“We have won custody and we are glad about that,” Dirk said.

“The court said that taking our children away was not proportionate—only because the authorities should apply very high fines and criminal prosecution instead. But this decision upholds the absurd idea that homeschooling is child endangerment and an abuse of parental authority.”

The Wunderlichs are now free to emigrate to another country where homeschooling is legal, if they choose, but they said they intend to remain in Germany and work for educational freedom.

“While we no longer fear that our children will be taken away as long as we are living in Hessen, it can still happen to other people in Germany,” Dirk said. “Now we fear crushing fines up to $75,000 and jail. This should not be tolerated in a civilized country.”

Petra Wunderlich said, "We could not do this without the help of HSLDA,” but cautioned that, “No family can fight the powerful German state—it is too much, too expensive."

"If it were not for HSLDA and their support, I am afraid our children would still be in state custody. We are so grateful and thank all homeschoolers who have helped us by helping HSLDA.”

HSLDA’s Director for Global Outreach, Michael Donnelly, said he welcomed the ruling but was concerned about the court’s troubling language.

“We welcome this ruling that overturns what was an outrageous abuse of judicial power,” he said.

“The lower court decision to take away legal custody of the children essentially imprisoned the Wunderlich family in Germany. But this decision does not go far enough. The court has only grudgingly given back custody and has further signaled to local authorities that they should still go after the Wunderlichs with criminal charges or fines.”

Donnelly pointed out that such behavior in a democratic country is problematic.

“Imprisonment and fines for homeschooling are outside the bounds of what free societies that respect fundamental human rights should tolerate,” he explained.

“Freedom and fundamental human rights norms demand respect for parental decision making in education. Germany’s state and national policies that permit banning home education must be changed.

"Such policies from a leading European democracy not only threaten the rights of tens of thousands of German families but establish a dangerous example that other countries may be tempted to follow,” Donnelly warned.

HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris said that acting on behalf of the Wunderlichs was an important stand for freedom.

“The Wunderlichs are a good and decent family whose basic human rights were violated and are still threatened,” Farris said.

“Their fight is our fight," Farris stressed, "and we will continue to support those who stand against German policy banning homeschooling that violates international legal norms. Free people cannot tolerate such oppression and we will do whatever we can to fight for families like the Wunderlichs both here in the United States and abroad. We must stand up to this kind of persecution where it occurs or we risk seeing own freedom weakened.”

Visit the HSLDA website dedicated to helping the Wunderlich family and other German homeschoolers here.

Contact the German embassy in the U.S. here.

Contact the German embassy in Canada here.

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