Susan G. Komen: Wrong to Drop Support of Planned Parenthood
Trumped up GOP congressional probe at root of problem.
Few organizations have done more for women’s healththan both Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a leading supporter of breast-cancer treatment and research, and Planned Parenthood, the country’s top reproductive health care provider and advocate. To see the two organizations now at war is not only upsetting to many women’s health supporters but all the more tragic because it’s so unnecessary.
The most charitable interpretation of events would suggest that Komen was duped by anti-abortion advocates into cutting off support for breast exams at Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country. That is expected to cost the latter organization as much as $680,000 in grants annually and potentially deny cancer screening to hundreds if not thousands of clients at Planned Parenthood health centers.
“Duped” because Komen has indicated that the decision was the result of recently adopted standards that bar grants to organizations that are under investigation by local, state or federal authorities. And wouldn’t you know it, but there’s a trumped-up probe in Congress right now — Florida Republican Rep. Cliff Stearns is looking into whether any federal dollars have been improperly spent on abortions.
The Stearns investigation is part of an all-out assault on Planned Parenthood by those who oppose a woman’s right to choose. It’s a conflict that’s heated up in the past year with the Republican takeover of the House and the far right’s unsuccessful effort to deny federal funding to Planned Parenthood.