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Komen Caves? Not Really.

**UPDATED**

“We want to apologize to the American public for recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives,” the group said. “We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities,” the group said. – Komen reverses decision to stop Planned Parenthood funding

This is what victory looks and feels like. But let’s look at the results to make sure they actually fully fund Planned Parenthood, because “preserve their eligibility” is awfully wishy-washy.

The people at Susan G. Komen underestimated the fury of the Democratic and progressive allies of Planned Parenthood. That’s because you rarely see them in action unless the worst has already happened.

This is instructive to the weak-kneed Democratic base and progressives who have compromised whenever Pres. Obama goes soft on principles that matter to the left.

From the New York Times:

Although multiple sources have said the board’s decision to eliminate funds to Planned Parenthood was driven by abortion opponents inside and outside of the organization, the Komen foundation, in its statement, insisted that its decision was not “done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood.”

“Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation,” the statement said. “We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair.”

The statement asked everyone “who has participated in this conversation across the country over the last few days to help us move past this issue. We do not want our mission marred or affected by politics — anyone’s politics.

If you don’t want your “mission marred or affected by politics – anyone’s politics,” then don’t hire a right-winger for public policy at the same time you fire a Democratic lobbyist.

The fact remains that Cecile Richard and Planned Parenthood, along with a lot of Democratic and progressive groups and activists, missed the signals and underestimated yet again the goals of right-wingers.

This is what you can do when you join each other in a worthy fight. But don’t let up, because eligibility is not full funding restored.

The statement from Nancy Brinker and the Susan G. Komen Board of Directors:

We want to apologize to the American public for recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women’s lives.

The events of this week have been deeply unsettling for our supporters, partners and friends and all of us at Susan G. Komen. We have been distressed at the presumption that the changes made to our funding criteria were done for political reasons or to specifically penalize Planned Parenthood. They were not.

Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation. We will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not political. That is what is right and fair.

Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight againstbreast cancer. Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process. We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.

It is our hope and we believe it is time for everyone involved to pause, slow down and reflect on how grants can most effectively and directly be administered without controversies that hurt the cause of women. We urge everyone who has participated in this conversation across the country over the last few days to help us move past this issue. We do not want our mission marred or affected by politics – anyone’s politics.

Starting this afternoon, we will have calls with our network and key supporters to refocus our attention on our mission and get back to doing our work. We ask for the public’s understanding and patience as we gather our Komen affiliates from around the country to determine how to move forward in the best interests of the women and people we serve.

We extend our deepest thanks for the outpouring of support we have received from so many in the past few days and we sincerely hope that these changes will be welcomed by those who have expressed their concern.

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22 Responses to Komen Caves? Not Really.

  1. spincitysd February 3, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    Damn, just posted this on the other Komen thread.

    As stated before, Komen flopped and twitched because it got flame-sprayed. What a PR disaster for the organization. The wrong-wing loony tunes are now going to re-double their efforts and the Progressive left is pissed. Nicely played Komen, in attempting to be more “apolitical” by caving in to anti-abortion zealots; the organization has become ground zero for the ongoing culture war.

    This is what happens when you fall for the “moderate” trap. Note to all pro-women organizations out there, your only option is to unapologetically stand for the right and needs of women–full stop. The basic rights of women are not up for discussion or up for compromise… that is why they are called rights.

  2. Taylor Marsh February 3, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

    As I updated my post, diligence is required, because there is enough ambiguity in the statement to make me think that mischief may be afoot.

    • spincitysd February 3, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

      Of course mischief is afoot. The organization is essentially decapitated. The ship is on a shoal and the captain has boarded a row boat and is furiously stroking away from the damaged vessel. I expect even more pointless scurrying about by Komen, and further damage to its core mission. Cowardice is its own dire punishment.

    • Joyce Arnold February 3, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

      Surely they wouldn’t try to doing anything to fool people, would they? SNARK

  3. Ga6thDem February 3, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

    Well, the whole episode damaged Komen but personally I think it damaged Komen in ways that were not discussed broadly before like Komen’s lack of spending on actual research. The history of the organization’s caving to right wingers also has been exposed.

    • Taylor Marsh February 3, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

      Absolutely.

      The trust they’d built up is gone.

      • Lake Lady February 3, 2012 at 3:01 pm #

        Totally~

      • ladywalker68 February 4, 2012 at 12:25 am #

        Taylor–Yup. The last walk I did for them was in 2006. Since then, my cash designated for donations has been diverted to helping my family stay afloat in this economy: From my son and his wife & kids to my elderly father. Not to mention barely treading water myself.

        In a way, the break has given me a chance to reassess which charities will receive my money in the future. I never was much of a fan for the “mega-charities” because there is so much overhead involved in the administration, you have to choose wisely to make sure and adequate chunk of each dollar you donate actually trickles down to the cause you are trying to support.

        For me, the Komen Foundation just fell off the wall like a drunken Humpty-Dumpty: As far as I am concerned, “All the Kings Horses and All the King’s Men will never put the Komen Foundation back together again.” That vase crashed and broke into a million pieces and there is just not enough glue in the world to fix it. A portion of every dollar donated right now finds itself in the pockets new senior vice-president for public policy, Karen Handel, who is blatantly anti-choice. So why would I ever want to donate or raise money for her benefit?

        The other culprits, as Taylor pointed this out in the other thread, are Cecile Richards and the leaders of Planned-Parenthood who did very little to fight this off. But IMO, the larger tragedy is that the powers that be at PP have allowed that organization to be tagged with abortion as its main logo when in fact, that is a tiny portion of what they do. There are so many other terrific things the organization does to promote good health care for low income women. That is a crying shame of monumental proportions.

        Anyway, from this point on, I will only donate to small local charities that pass the smell test. The Komen Foundation crapped a huge pile of betrayal all over its long-time supporters and now they are trying to claim it doesn’t stink. Too late!

  4. abinmex February 3, 2012 at 2:01 pm #

    Also, the fact that they defunded millions from stem cell research from November’s budget too me is just as telling as their PP stance.

    http://www.care2.com/causes/susan-g-komen-foundation-also-stops-funding-embryonic-stem-cell-research.html

    I’m never supporting them again.

  5. angels81 February 3, 2012 at 2:02 pm #

    Hi gang, been out of the country for awhile, but I’m back now.

    Just read that a board member for Komen confirms there are no guarantees of future grants to PP. This is nothing more then PR BS to stop the fire storm.

    • Taylor Marsh February 3, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

      angels81 in the house! Welcome back.

      Yep, there you have it.

    • Lake Lady February 3, 2012 at 2:58 pm #

      Angels81!  Great to see ya! Don’t be a stranger.

  6. RAJensen February 3, 2012 at 2:16 pm #

    Total capitulation by an organization that has been infiltrated by misoginists. The newly appointed Executive VP was a failed pro life Republican candidate for Governor. Their feet will be held to the fire to see if they live up to their promise. Thumbs up for the new social media which unleashed a firestorm of protest. The total swift capitulation by the Koman Foundation was best summed by Cheap Trick:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LqB9lhHqmsE

     

  7. angels81 February 3, 2012 at 2:33 pm #

    Don’t be fooled, nothing has really changed. All they have done is come out with some PR BS to stop the bleeding. Money that was already granted to PP was not affected, it has to do with future grants, and according to one board member there is no guarantee PP will get any of those.  By coming out with this statement Komen is hoping all us good boys and girls will say, OK everything is all right now and go about our business and forget about it.

    Don’t let them pull the wool over our eyes.

  8. casualobserver February 3, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    I can understand ideological based cheerleading, even respect, a well-articulated version, but when attached to a myopic view of reality, it simply becomes echo-chamber bandwidth waste.

    I’ve read nothing here in 2 days that would even begin to sway someone who isn’t simply already a member of the crips, certainly not someone who is a blood, but what ought to be more important to you would be someone who hasn’t become a member of either.

    What’s your purpose for the rant? Sure, you got an extra million to PP these past two days, but guess what you also did….you got two million more into SGK over the same time period, including some from me.

    I can do this all day. Is that how you plan on getting your ideology advanced?

    It reminds me of the saying about those who bring knives to gunfights.

    • AliceP February 3, 2012 at 3:03 pm #

      Great! Maybe casualobsover and solo can team up!

       

    • angels81 February 3, 2012 at 3:09 pm #

      Rant? Myopic view of reality? What rant are you speaking of? Also, what makes you think anyone is here to sway you one way or another? The only rant I’ve read today is yours.

    • secularhumanizinevoluter February 3, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

      1.”Sure, you got an extra million to PP these past two days, but guess what you also did….you got two million more into SGK over the same time period, including some from me.”

      Yeah…that’s why the Botox Babe did the flipflop. Cause they are just getting TO much money from repugnantklan/teabaggers like you.

      2.”I can do this all day. Is that how you plan on getting your ideology advanced?

      It reminds me of the saying about those who bring knives to gunfights.”

      See reply to your first male bovine fecal matter spewing.

      As far as advancing the ideology of taking care of poor women who otherwise would do without LIFE SAVING mammograms because some rightwing, repugnantklaner/teabaggin , Botoxified bimbo decided HER warped hatemonger version of politics were more important….well, please refer to the reply to your first stupid spewing.

      Watch it honey, got a ring of santorum around your mouth..fluffing Ricky much? Carefull, that shit stains.

      • secularhumanizinevoluter February 3, 2012 at 7:56 pm #

        Is this a rant? My bad….BWAHAHAHA!

  9. Lake Lady February 3, 2012 at 6:59 pm #

    dakinikat over at  skydancing has some good links on this topic..

  10. Ga6thDem February 3, 2012 at 7:54 pm #

    Karen Handel has done a fabulous job of destroying Komen and turning it into one of those nut job organizations or maybe it always was and she’s done a wonderful job of exposing them.

.... a writer is someone who takes the universal whore of language
and turns her into a virgin again.  ~ erica jong