OpinionMon Dec 5, 2011 - 6:04 pm EST
Is Komen stopping funding Planned Parenthood?: maybe, but let’s wait and see
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.
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