From the desk of Wisconsin Family Action Julaine Appling:
I love watching the Packers. But watching the Pack play in October is a bit difficult for me. It’s about the pink hats, wrist bands, socks, cleats, shoes, towels, helmet decals, and a couple of weeks ago, even pink penalty flags that show up on the players and coaching staffs during the games in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We all need to know the truth about Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, the sponsor of all this pink.
There’s hardly a person who will hear this commentary whose life has not in some way been touched by breast cancer. We all want real cures and real preventions for this disease that is the leading cancer among women and ranks second in the number of cancer-related deaths among women. But there must be a better way to raise awareness and money for a cure than by having an organization that has strong ties to Planned Parenthood leading the way.
A few years ago the money tie that binds Komen for the Cure Foundation to Planned Parenthood was in the news a great deal. For a while last year, and because of public perception and pressure, Susan G. Komen stopped giving to Planned Parenthood. However, the organization soon recanted and reinstated the funding stream. The argument that the Komen Foundation makes for funding Planned Parenthood, in their own words, is that “In some areas of the U.S., our affiliates have determined a Planned Parenthood clinic to be the best or only local place where women can receive breast health care.”
Such an assertion bears looking into—and when you do, you might be surprised to find that first Planned Parenthood does not do mammograms. They refer for mammograms, but they don’t actually offer the service. Just how much money does it take for a Planned Parenthood affiliate to tell a woman where she can get a mammogram?
Ok, so maybe Planned Parenthood facilities provide other screenings or tests, but is Planned Parenthood really the “only local place” where “some women in some communities can receive breast health care”—especially low-income women? Of course not. Hospitals frequently offer free screenings, as do other clinics and organizations.
Well, then, is Planned Parenthood the “best” place for such treatments, education, screenings? That, too, is highly doubtful. Planned Parenthood Federation and its state level affiliates are not primarily medical clinics. They are primarily abortion providers, even though they don’t agree with that characterization. However, that’s where the nation’s leading abortion provider makes its money.
It’s hard to imagine that a place that focuses on preventing babies from being born by hawking contraceptives and further kills babies in utero, is the best place to go for treatments, education, and screenings for breast cancer.
Making the Komen/Planned Parenthood link even worse is that reliable studies continue to show a very real link between abortion and breast cancer. In some groups, the risk of getting breast cancer increases twofold for women who have had abortions. The attempt to cover up this information is staggering. We have tried in the past to get this abortion-breast cancer link information included in Wisconsin’s Women’s Right to Know law—with no success. However, the science is there, for those who want to—or are willing—to see it. So, here’s a group that is supposed to be finding a cure for and prevention methods for breast cancer giving millions of dollars to an organization that is contributing to the problem. Something is seriously wrong with this picture.
Please consider the following. The Planned Parenthood-friendly Guttmacher Institute reports that abortion rates are 4 times higher for black women than white women. Commensurately, the Centers for Disease Control, the incidence of breast cancer from 2000-2009 has “increased significantly by 0.7% per year among black women,” while the incidence of breast cancer over the same period has “decreased significantly by 1.0% per year among white women.” Coincidence? Maybe. Just one factor in the breast cancer issue? Perhaps. However, add this information to the research that is being done on the abortion-breast-cancer link, and I think it’s time we paid attention. Women’s lives are at stake.
It’s likely very unrealistic for me to expect the Packers to stop wearing pink in October. But, at a minimum you and I can and should be good stewards of our money and support organizations working to battle breast cancer but that don’t support Planned Parenthood. The “pink link” is becoming too obvious for us to ignore.