Howard Dean is attacking Komen, accusing them of cowardice for their decision to halt grants to Planned Parenthood:
The Komen Foundation has abandoned hundreds of thousands of women who rely on breast health services like mammograms — over a hundred and seventy thousand through its partnership with Planned Parenthood in recent years. By caving into pressure from the far right, the Komen Foundation has demonstrated that they lack courage.
Abby Johnson, author of Unplanned, formerly a Planned Parenthood director in Texas, offers support for Komen, pointing to how misleading that company line is:
I am thankful that Komen is finally acknowledging their harmful affiliation with Planned Parenthood. The money given has never gone for “mammograms and breast services” . . . since Planned Parenthood provides neither. I believed this has happened primarily because of the public outcry of pro-lifers. I hope they continue to halt giving to such a destructive organization.
Planned Parenthood refers women for screenings, they don’t do them. They do abortions. That’s their business. Kudos to Komen for walking away from that. There will be a lot of hell to pay from the abortion industry and its party, needless to say.
Dean is encouraging corporate sponsors to punish Komen:
Organizations which lack courage eventually fail. I support calls for the corporate donors to re-evaluate their support for Komen so that consumers aren’t forced to re-evaluate buying their products. I urge continued support for Planned Parenthood and the work they do to provide women’s health services and organizations who will continue the fight against breast cancer without endangering women’s lives for political purposes.
Planned Parenthood, of course, is the well-oiled political machine here, insulted that Komen listened to the army of Davids exposing the “war on women” talking point as the dangerous corporate spin it is.
And Komen did not become an anti-abortion front group when they decided to halt grants to Planned Parenthood. As Komen explains in a statement today:
We are dismayed and extremely disappointed that actions we have taken to strengthen our granting process have been widely mischaracterized. It is necessary to set the record straight.
Starting in 2010, Komen began an initiative to help us do a better job of measuring the impact of community grants. This is important because we invest significant dollars in our local community programs — $93 million in 2011, which provided for 700,000 breast health screenings and diagnostic procedures.
Following this review, we made the decision to implement stronger performance criteria for our grantees to minimize duplication and free up dollars for direct services to help vulnerable women. To support this new granting strategy, Komen has also implemented more stringent eligibility standards to safeguard donor dollars. Consequently, some organizations are no longer eligible to receive Komen grants.
Some might argue that our standards are too exacting, but over the past three decades people have given us more than just their money. They have given us their trust and we take that responsibility very seriously.
We regret that these new policies have impacted some longstanding grantees, such as Planned Parenthood, but want to be absolutely clear that our grant-making decisions are not about politics. Throughout our 30 year history, our priority has always been and will continue to be the women we serve. As we move forward, we are working to ensure that there is no interruption or gaps in services for the women who need our support most in the fight against breast cancer.
Komen is in the business of preventing breast cancer. Komen made a responsible decision in keeping with their mission.