I try to keep my political views here to a minimum. Not because I don’t have any, but rather because they usually would get in the way of trying to be impartial and fair in my day job.
I seriously believe that everyone is entitled to an opinion, and I would defend that right with my last breath. Different opinions and the right to express them, are a fundamental premise of the freedoms that make this country a great one.
That said, I would like to point out that my mother is a breast cancer survivor. My sister and my wife have participated in the “Race for the Cure”. I have donated to breast cancer research via the Susan G. Komen foundation. I believe in the fight to find a cure to save all women from the fear of this terrible disease.
So it is with no small difficulty that I now have to reject the Komen foundation itself, because I believe they are playing politics with their decision this week to pull their support for another essential organization for women (and men for that matter) – Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood is under attack in this nation. Because among its many services, it provides access to contraception and pregnancy termination procedures, the latter falling under the political maelstrom known as “the abortion debate”. As I said before, I recognize that everyone is entitled to an opinion. Many people oppose the proactive ending of a pregnancy on moral or religious grounds. Their right to oppose the Roe Vs. Wade decision is something I believe in.
But a quick reminder here that the question of whether or not abortion is a legal medical procedure that can be made freely available to women in this country was settled by The United States Supreme Court in 1973. Nearly 40 years ago, folks. It is the law of the land. But those who oppose it being so, have waged whatever offensive they can to limit, curtail, and stop this legal medical procedure by almost any means necessary.
Including going after Planned Parenthood.
A certain congressman from Florida has launched a congressional investigation to determine if any Federal money has been used by Planned Parenthood to provide abortions to women. The organization is prohibited from doing do by another bit of lawmaking, the 1976 Hyde Amendment, which specifies that no federal funds (i.e., taxpayer money) can go to providing abortions.
Because Planned Parenthood also provides a whole host of other health services to women including breast cancer screenings and counseling, those services can be funded by Federal and other grants–which Planned Parenthood got to the tune of less than a million dollars in the past year from the Komen foundation. This move by the Komen foundation is reportedly due to a new internal rule for the foundation which says it will not support any other group that is being investigated by authorities at any level.
So because one congressman has launched an investigation that may or may not prove any wrongdoing by Planned Parenthood, the Komen foundation has stopped giving financial support to Planned Parenthood.
In my opinion, this move is one of utter cowardice by the Komen foundation, and there are too many factors that point to this decision being influenced by those who believe that abortions should be made illegal to women in this country.
I therefore believe that there are other worthy organizations that are raising money for breast cancer research…and they will now receive my support. As will Planned Parenthood, for providing a range of healthcare services that my two daughters–or any of the women I know and love–may need one day.
Completely legal and essential services, not just in my opinion mind you–but as determined and protected by the law of the land.