The Komen Foundation for the Cure has announced it will no longer give grants to provide breast exams and mammograms through Planned Parenthood affiliates. Komen states that this has nothing to do with the Right to Life but rather the fact that Planned Parenthood is being investigated. According to the New York Times the investigation is by a conservative Republican who was urged to act by anti-abortion groups. This is sad. Investigation does not mean guilt. What happened to innocent until proven guilty?

Pro-choice should be just that. The woman gets to choose where the money she sweated through runs and walks to raise should be spent! Pro-life should mean not just the lives of babies, but also the lives of women! This is not an either or situation.

Patrick Hurd is the CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Virginia, a recipient of a 2010 grant from Komen. He is also the husband of a breast cancer survivor who is the veteran of several Komen fundraising races. As he told the Associated Press: Cancer doesn’t care if you’re pro-choice, anti-choice, progressive, conservative, victims of cancer could care less about people’s politics.”

Rather than putting politics into the breast cancer movement, lets rise above the political divisions and work together. Lets redirect all the money that will be spent on investigating Planned Parenthood into funding studies looking to find the cause and prevent the disease once and for all. Lets redirect our anger to making mammograms unnecessary because we know how to prevent the disease.

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43 Responses to Do Only Some Lives Matter?

  1. I agree with you 100%. Over the past ten years I have raised nearly $20k for sjk, mainly for ALL women to have the choice of a mammogram, period. Recently, a friend in NC was refused a mamo by sjk due to some minor technicality. Not good! The woman has a lump the size of a golf ball in her breast! I am still shocked by this outrageous decision.

  2. Lisa Augustine says:

    I am a young survivor that wants to help and promote the cause. what can I do?

  3. AnneMarie says:

    Lisa,
    Are you in the Army of Women? If not, PLEASE JOIN and encourage all of your friends to join, too…. There is a link in the banner next to “about us” that will take you to the Army of Women site where you can sign up. Or, check out the Facebook page and you can join through there, too. We need a million women to get behind Dr. Love…..
    Continued good health from a “sister” survivor!
    AnneMarie

  4. Chemobabe says:

    Thank you, Dr. Love, for this spot-on response. Valuing life should mean focusing on making screening and treatments available to all women. Valuing life should mean focusing on research into causes and less toxic and more effective cures.

  5. Stacy says:

    Completely agree. Komen lost my support. End of story.

  6. As soon as Karen Handel became a V.P. at Komen, this was inevitable. Handel was a staunch advocate for defunding PP in her failed campaign for governor of GA.

    According to GuideStar, Komen does not submit to independent audits of their finances yet they choose to fault PP in a bogus, politically motivated investigation asking for 10 years worth of financial records.

    Ironically, many who gave to Komen may now give directly to PP and designate their giving to breast health services.

  7. melissa says:

    SJK has also spent over $800,000 on law suits to stop other groups from using “for the cure” in their slogans. SJK lost my suport a long time ago because of that waste of money.

  8. GiniLu Robinson says:

    When i first moved to california in the 70’s Planned Parenthood was THE ONLY place i could go to get my annual checkups AND my birth control. (and I would PROUDLY walk past the protesters while they screamed at me – BABY KILLER! (really? i was only going in there for a pap smear and a breast exam…) Fast forward to the 90’s when my daughters were out on their own and uninsured, AGAIN – Planned Parenthood was their ONE choice in maintaining their checkups and birthcontrol, and breast health – and where my youngest discovered she had HPV. I am LIVID at this news – though, sadly not surprised. Thanks for the blog post – it’ll be shared on my FB in two seconds. And YES! I am a PROUD member of the Army of Women.

  9. paula yablonsky says:

    Susan G. Komen no longer gets my support.

  10. Sandy says:

    I say good for the Susan G. Komen Society. Yes, women have a choice. A choice of whether or not to engage in activity that could lead to pregnancy.

  11. Lisa says:

    AnneMarie – I am most definitely enrolled in the Army of Women! Continued good health to you, too!

  12. Sandy says:

    (To the different Sandy who wrote ‘good for the Komen “Society”‘): you don’t know what you’re talking about. I worked at Planned Parenthood for years, helping poor women and women of modest means get birth control, pap smears, breast cancer screening and other basic, necessary health care. Whether women engage “in activity that could lead to pregnancy” or not (do you want the human race to die out?), they still need to avoid cancer and to get check ups. That’s 97 percent of what Planned Parenthood does. The Komen Foundation deserves not a penny of support from anyone who understands that early cancer detection saves lives. That they do not recognize as much is a terrible indictment.

  13. Barbara says:

    Sandy at 1:36 is so right! Everyone who cares about breast cancer issues should now give to Planned Parenthood and walk away from SJK. What they’ve done is outrageous!

  14. Laura says:

    SJK lost my support a long time ago because they focus on early stage breast cancer and ignore metastatic disease, which is what kills. Also much of their money is spent on stupid things like their ownership of he word “cure”.

  15. Noreen Neitz says:

    As a pro-life survivor of late stage breast cancer, I am pleased to hear that Komen will no longer be funding Planned Parenthood. I agree that women and men can choose where to put their fundraising efforts, and I am pleased that I can now support breast cancer research without being worried that my efforts will be used to fund an organization that I cannot support. This decision by Komen does not stop those who support Planned Parenthood from raising funds for that organization.

  16. PatK says:

    Thank you so much for this. I’ve been wanting to recommend the Love Foundation to my friends who no longer wish to donate to Komen over this issue, but hesitated when I discovered that your site recommends the Komen Foundation as a possible source of free or low-cost mammograms (under “Your Questions”/”Screening and Diagnosis.”) This statement makes me feel better about referring people to the Love Foundation; I hope you’ll consider editing that part of the site to remove the reference to the Komen Foundation now that it’s clear they’ve taken money *away* from low-cost screening programs.

  17. Edie says:

    Why are those who visit PP, not getting these same services (paps, mammograms, birth control) at county health departments?

  18. Deborah says:

    I used planned parenthood for screenings when I had no other resources. After I was diagnosed sgk provided my first emotional support. Now I feel like sending my shirts and other gear back.
    My future donations will be to the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge program. They provided me with housing during my treatments. Think Ronald McDonald house for adults.

  19. Patricia Horejsi says:

    Susan G. Komen foundation has gained my further support. It is a great organization that helps women (poor and rich) get supplies (bras, etc.) and mammograms following treatment etc. They fund important research about breast cancer. They do not do the role of planned parenthood and should not have to. They have a right to fund whomever they want to. I will continue to sweat and run and contribute to their races, etc. My mother died of breast cancer in the early 80’s. She would not have supported planned parenthood, but she would have given anything to help a respectable organization like Susan G. Komen. Finding the Susan Love email in my inbox first thing today has caused me (a poor woman with breast cancer (recurred),) to not fund Susan Love anymore. Thank you Komen foundation for your continued generous support of breast cancer research and your continued help to women INDIVIDUALLY.

  20. Paula says:

    If it wasnt for planned parenthood I would have never been able to get a mammogram done

  21. Michelle says:

    Because SGK will no longer fund mammograms, I will discontinue my support to this organization. I think that this is so extremely sad. I loved this organization.

  22. Barbara says:

    I am disappointed in the Susan Love Foundation for caving in to political pressure. Women are allowed choices today, thank goodness. For all who do not agree with abortions or birth control, they are free not to go there, but let us stop judging one another. I will no longer support this organization and will urge my friends to do the same. Stop the hypocrites and let us all live our lives.

  23. Faye Taylor says:

    I am and have been a member of army of women and am so sad to see that i received this message. You have turned this into a political issue by publishing this article. I think you do great work but naming political parties and politicians in your article will only offend some supporters.

  24. Larry D says:

    Stop trying to make your goals and positions a-political. Everything is political, especially women’s health choices. You’ve got to stand up and shout “Stop killing women.” to the conservative lunatics. You’ve got to vote against these right-wing killers.

  25. Anna says:

    You have my full support. I am a member, I fundraise and I’m also a considerable influencer. My efforts and the dollars obtained from those efforts will not be redirected solely to the Army of Women organization. The Komen organization made this political and has lost focus on the real issues and goals we all hope to achieve. It’s unfortunate but the work of this organization and others like it will prevail and I still believe we may find a cure in my lifetime.

  26. Betts says:

    Historically I have split my donations between Susan Love’s Foundation and the Susan B Komen Foundation. No longer. From now on, 100% of my contributions to breast cancer research will be given to the Susan Love Foundation.

  27. Ginny says:

    The organization that has politicized mammograms for low and moderate income women is the Komen Foundation. First they said they defunded Planned Parenthood because it was under investigation (by a right-wing member of the House who has his own defund Planned Parenthood political agenda) and now (when the Komen Foundation catches heat for its wrong-headed priorities) they say that they have just changed their standards for grantees (on Andrea Mitchell’s program today). People like me who are upset with the Komen Foundation know when we’re being sold a load of lies. Komen is, of course, free to fall in with the right-wingers in denying basic health care (cancer screening and check ups) to poor and moderate-income women, but we who think women’s health should not be politicized will be reacting accordingly and directing our support to other groups. For cancer research I will support the Love Foundation from here on out. Cheers for Susan Love for speaking out in defense of apolitical funding for affordable mammograms.

  28. K.A. says:

    In response to Edie, many, if not most, county health departments do not cancer screenings of any kind to women. Both my current county in upstate NY & and the county in which I resided in Ohio did not offer these services. Most county health departments seem limited to child health care and flu shots.

  29. When asked if we are pro-life or pro-choice, I vote for us all saying “YES”!

  30. Melanie says:

    Barbara, You need to go back and re-read this information. The Dr Susan Love Foundation did NOT cave to political pressures – the Susan G Komen Foundation did – and they are NOT the same thing. Don’t assume they are one and the same and don’t make the mistake of withholding support from this group.

    This is not a pro-choice issue. Cancer screenings for ALL women is the issue.

    SGK should be ashamed of itself. Shame, shame, shame on you.

  31. Jessica S says:

    The real issue is not the investigation or auditing of PP, but the fact that SJK is not being audited and investigated. Less than 15% of their funds raised goes to research and then the research that is funded has nothing to do with finding a cure. Further their message of “have a mammogram because mammograms save lives “is a huge misinformation campaign. 2/3 of pre-menopausal women and 1/4 of post menopausal women have dense breasts. In these women, mammograms successfully identify cancer maybe 40% of the time. (That’s less than 50-50). Further, the recent SJK sponsored environmental study confirmed that cumulative exposure to ionized radiation (like mammograms)is carcinogenic, meaning it increases your risk of developing breast cancer. There will be no cure if we continue to play the role of fundraiser drones. STOP buying pink products that do nothing but line of pockets of companies capitalizing on our misfortune, and STOP donating money to these organizations. In truth, we don’t need to be throwing more money at them. We need accountability on how the money is being spent. This is from Marie Claire magazine 9/11: “Though breast cancer researchers and advocates perpetually plead for more money, the disease is, in fact, awash in it. Last year, the National Institutes of Health, the nation’s top agency for health-related research, allocated $763 million to the study of breast cancer, more than double what it committed to any other cancer. The Department of Defense also funds breast cancer research ($150 million this year), as do several states, most notably Texas and California. All that is in addition to the money raised by the roughly 1,400 IRS-recognized, tax-exempt charities in this country devoted to breast cancer. They operate in every state and in just about every major city. The largest of them, Dallas-based Susan G. Komen for the Cure, grossed $420 million last year alone. All told, an estimated $6 billion is raised every year in the name of breast cancer. And the money keeps pouring in.”
    SGK WAS a valuable organization when it was created. It got people to acknowledge breast cancer. SJK is now in the way of progress. Do your own research and you will see that after 40 years, breast cancer treatment has been a FAILED EXPERIMENT. True that genome tests have come a long way. But unless you are Her2 positive where progress has been made with targeted drugs, your treatment options haven’t changed since the 70’s. Further the statistics are parsed to have us believe that the death rate is declining because of “early detection” and treatments. Wrong. The death “rate” is declining because they include DCIS in the statistics. More women are getting BC (including DCIS as breast cancer) and as a PROPORTION to the whole a lesser PERCENTAGE of women are dying. The reality is that 40,000 women/year were dying of breast cancer in the 70’s and 40,00/year are dying of breast cancer now.
    In what other area would you be OK with allocating $6 billion/ year for 40 years with nothing to show for it? We need something better than mammograms to detect BC. As long as SJK is in “business” that will never happen. We need better drugs with less toxic side effects. ( The American Society of Clinical Oncology award Columbia University $ 1.35 million to improve patient care of those on Aromatase inhibitors (AIs)—funded by SJK. The research is not going to examine the severe musculoskeletal side effects that keep 40% of patients from complying with their full 5 yr treatment. It is going to research if text messaging said patients daily will get them to stick to their medicine. That’s $1.35 million towards research!
    I’m not picking on SJK, I would boycott all fundraising organizations until we see some concrete results. Give your money to ACS or better yet your local research hospital or university that specializes in breast cancer if you feel that $1billion/yr in federal funds is not enough.

  32. Michelle says:

    Used to love Komen. They have lost my support as well. What a shame they take this position.

  33. Teresa says:

    They still get my support!! Where’s the baby’s right to life?? Babies don’t fall out of the sky. A woman has to do something to get pregnant. I hope Planned Parenthood fries!

  34. Karen Rudicil says:

    I agree this is sad. Pro choice is pro choice. Planned Parenthood has been the greatest support for women without other means for all tests, birth control, etc.
    I will support the ACS or Susan Love foundation in the future and encourage all others to do so.
    This stance of the Korman foundation is a poor decision.

  35. Judi says:

    Thank you Susan Love for another thoughtful response. I have watched over the years as SGK has made some very poor strategic decisions. When they joined with Kentucky Fried Chicken as a fundraiser all it did was promote “pink” buckets of unhealthy food; When they sued individuals for using the word “cure” in fundraising it was pathetic. And they continue to make poor decisions about how their money is spent. What SGK now done is wrong. They have an accountability to those women who raised funds through blood sweat and tears and their decision to withdraw funding from PP for screening and exam services to low income women is a slap in the face.

  36. Anne from San Fran says:

    I was personally horrified to learn of SGK’s defunding of PP. In 1988 as a 22yr old in San Francisco I went to PP because I did not have the money to go anywhere else to get a check-up/pap. At that appointment they found a lump. With PP’s help I was able to get it tested and then removed (at Brigham and Women’s in Boston actually). I was young with no cancer history in my family. Without PP I might not be typing this message 25 years later.

  37. Joyce Merrett says:

    Thank you for letting us vent on this subject. Like many I had been supporter of SBK until I was diagnosed with BC 18 months ago. I decided to hold a fundraiser with the support of a small group of friends and family, it my was defiant way of saying to my personal battle “You will not beat me down”. With the help of my sister who came from the UK to donate her services as the speaker and program presenter.
    I contacted SBK for some information and was told that first I had to pay $1000.00 up front, and if I wanted to use their logo that would be another $2,500. It was also made clear that they were not interested in helping people who were not expecting to raise much larger amounts of money that we hoped to raise.
    Needless, to say I did not go with them. I did however
    contact the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in New York. An A++ rated organization. What a difference. We gave them our information and goals.
    There was no request for money, we were able to use their logo they provided us with all kinds of promational items and information.
    We had a committee group of 10 women – 8 BC survivors.
    Our church donated, free of charge, the church hall for our program presenation – so many volunteers came forward to assist in anyway we needed. Space was limited, but 75 ladies attended and
    enjoyed a delicious donated lunch and enjoyed a lively, fun presentation. That afternoon we raised just under $10,000. This was equally shared between BCRF and The Rose, an organization here in Houston that helps women without any insurance to have free mammograms, biopsies and other treatment.
    (The Rose, like BCRF required no upfront money etc.,)
    I no longer donate or support SKB and tell everyone of their response to our request.
    This latest act confirms what kind of organization they really are, a group led by the nose by politicians, and who are
    not interested in the people who really need help.
    Finally,no one has the right to tell a woman what she should do with her own body.
    Thank you for all your work for breast cancer Dr. Love. Your book has helped me enomously. I also give thanks my wonderful team of doctors. Bless you all.

  38. Joyce Merrett says:

    Thank you for letting us vent on this subject. Like many I had been supporter of SBK until I was diagnosed with BC 18 months ago. I decided to hold a fundraiser with the support of a small group of friends and family, it my was defiant way of saying to my personal battle “You will not beat me down”. With the help of my sister who came from the UK to donate her services as the speaker and program presenter.
    I contacted SBK for some information and was told that first I had to pay $1000.00 up front, and if I wanted to use their logo that would be another $2,500. It was also made clear that they were not interested in helping people who were not expecting to raise much larger amounts of money that we hoped to raise.
    Needless, to say I did not go with them. I did however
    contact the Breast Cancer Research Foundation in New York. An A++ rated organization. What a difference. We gave them our information and goals.
    There was no request for money, we were able to use their logo they provided us with all kinds of promotional items and information.
    We had a committee group of 10 women – 8 BC survivors.
    Our church donated, free of charge, the church hall for our program presenation – so many volunteers came forward to assist in anyway we needed. Space was limited, but 75 ladies attended and
    enjoyed a delicious donated lunch and enjoyed a lively, fun presentation. That afternoon we raised just under $10,000. This was equally shared between BCRF and The Rose, an organization here in Houston that helps women without any insurance to have free mammograms, biopsies and other treatment.
    (The Rose, like BCRF required no upfront money etc.,)
    I no longer donate or support SKB and tell everyone of their response to our request.
    This latest act confirms what kind of organization they really are, a group led by the nose by politicians, and who are
    not interested in the people who really need help.
    Finally,no one has the right to tell a woman what she should do with her own body.

  39. bgarlock says:

    It’s sGk not sJk. Perhaps a small point, but most off-putting, esp when repeated repeatedly here. Is whoever moderates this free to make that edit to previous posts? (And then delete this part of mine?)

    Nancy Brinker is one political creature for sure. She contributed huge $$$ to fund George W. Bush’s presidential campaign & so was rewarded with an ambassadorship to Hungary – but had it only for a few months, b/c Bush booted her out to give the plum spot to his cousin (the sole contractor, I’ve read, for all food service to troops in Afghanistan & Iraq), presumably b/c he’d contributed even more than Brinker. An excellent marketer, for years she continued to make sure she was introduced as “Ambassador Brinker,”

    Brinker’s (now ex) husband also used the Komen connection by getting SGK to lobby Congress for insurance coverage for mammograms — when he owned a company that manufactures mammography equipment. Talk about conflict of interest! (I also am concerned about the efficacy of mammograms, esp. repeated radiation exposures in younger women that could *trigger* BC.)

    I am with Dr/ Love — I hope Komen will spend money on PREVENTION. One way to do that is to make basic services available through women’s health providers like PP. I have Stage IV BC, and much as I don’t want it, I especially don’t want my precious daughter (or son!) to get it!!!

    Thank you, Dr, Love, for casting the right light on this issue. It’s about making services available to ALL women. Bless you for your life-saving work, and your voice now.

  40. bgarlock says:

    Incredible post, Jessica S, thank you.

    As someone who is contending with Stage IV BC, and who has lost 6 (!!) friends to BC in the last 3 years (well 5, but I felt a connection to Elizabeth Edwards, having met her at her book signing for “Resilience”), I am SOOOOOO grateful to those friends and family who honor me and others they love with sacrificial contributions intended to promote a “cure” for breast cancer. But obviously $$ going to Komen is not the best use of their hard-earned, lovingly-offered cash.

    I was shocked by Jessica’s statistics, if correct, about how little of Komen’s $$ goes to BC research. I also understand that comparatively little of SGK’s $$ goes to PREVENTION; MUCH more goes to researchers working w/ existing drugs & giant pharmaceutical companies to identify (patentable) treatments — which may benefit people like me, & may not, according to Jessica S’s report that the # of deaths to BC has been stable over the last 40 years…. yikes.

    As for which charity to give $$ to, I know there’ve been concerns about ACS as well. So I encourage everyone to do their own research to decide the best recipient of their love- and hope-infused contributions. As for me, I’m going to give some of my $ to EWG,org, b/c they are working hard to prevent ALL kinds of cancer. There’s too much cancer these days — & I for one am desperate that it be stopped BEFORE it starts! An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!!!

  41. NO MO PINK! says:

    FORGET KOMEN & LOVE FOUNDATION. Sad when foundations benefit over the tragedy of cancer. Like Planned Parenthood, they do not care for human life (just power & $$) and don’t mind destroying INNOCENT LIVES (PP) because of the slutty lives of women and lascivious men.

  42. Lynne says:

    Jessica’s response (2:51p)is absolutely correct. Dr. Gayle Sulik’s book, “Pink Ribbon Blues” shows that while “pink ribbon culture” has brought breast cancer much attention, it has not had the desired effect of improving women’s health. It may, in fact, have done the opposite. Indeed, while survivors and supporters walk, run, and purchase ribbons for a cure, cancer rates rise, the cancer industry thrives, corporations claim responsible citizenship while profiting from the disease, and breast cancer is stigmatized anew for those who reject the pink ribbon model. But Sulik also outlines alternative organizations that make a real difference, highlights what they do differently, and presents a new agenda for the future.http://gaylesulik.com/

  43. Heriberto Dar says:

    Children represent the future, and ensuring their healthy growth and development ought to be a prime concern of all societies. Newborns are particularly vulnerable and children are vulnerable to malnutrition and infectious diseases, many of which can be effectively prevented or treated. :”.,

    Keep it up
    http://healthmedicinejournal.com/index.php

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