One of the most frequently asked questions I receive from my radio listeners has to do with alternatives to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Active Catholics are slowly beginning to understand that there is a connection between Komen and the nation’s largest abortion provider; Planned Parenthood.
That said, outside of Catholic media and a very few select health related web sites, we see an awful lot of pink; the color used to attract attention to the breast cancer cause. Rarely however, do we see or hear anything about the connection between abortion and an increased risk of breast cancer.
That’s why it is so encouraging to see the efforts of the Archdiocese of Atlanta and support the incredible work of Karen Malec at the Coalition on Abortion and Breast Cancer, (www.abortionbreastcancer.org) and Dr. Angela LaFranchi at the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute, (www.bcpinstitute.org). The Atlanta Archdiocese is doing its best to educate its flock on both the Komen-Planned Parenthood connection and the increased risk in breast cancer when it comes to abortion and oral contraceptives.
The relationship that still exists between Komen, considered the top breast cancer research organization in the country, and the leading provider of something that greatly increases the breast cancer risk, is troubling to say the least for a variety of reasons. Komen for years denied any connection but then claimed they donated to Planned Parenthood because PP offered breast cancer screenings for women. Personally I never bought that line. I have been researching Planned Parenthood for far too long and was well aware that Planned Parenthood facilities only did referrals. The line about “screenings” was just that; a line thought up by the media spin doctors. I confirm this by routinely calling Planned Parenthood facilities and asking them directly. The answer is always the same; “we do referrals.” Not only does Planned Parenthood not do screenings, but Komen also ignores the abortion-breast cancer link, and barely mentions on their web site or in their materials, the link between oral contraceptives and breast cancer. Earlier this year some Komen insiders tried to cut the Planned Parenthood ties. Komen was beginning to feel the heat as negative stories about other problems at Planned Parenthood began to surface. However, within a week Komen did a reversal. The pressure following a media firestorm was apparently too much.
That’s why the decision by the archdiocese of Atlanta to support the Coalition on Abortion and Breast Cancer and the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute is a win-win on several fronts. The folks behind these two research organizations as far as I am concerned are saints. They strive to do nothing but raise awareness and give women the complete story when it comes to the damaging effects of abortion and birth control especially as it relates to breast cancer. They struggle to raise money because they speak the truth. Speaking the truth about the sacred cows of contraception and abortion in today’s oversexed culture is not exactly popular, even acceptable. Therefore, the Archdiocese of Atlanta is giving a platform to beautiful efforts that for the most part have been voices in the wilderness. But voices that need to be heard and proclaimed from the housetops. For Catholics in Atlanta, they can also rest assured that their hard earned money is going to organizations that are absolutely in line with Church teaching. Archdiocesan communications director Pat Chivers told EWTN News the decision was in response to many Catholics who wanted to know if they could still support breast cancer research during awareness month.
“We’re actually having an opportunity to speak out in support of human life and we are encouraging parishes and individuals to participate in breast cancer awareness activities but not with Komen because they support Planned Parenthood.”
Hopefully the Archdiocese of Atlanta’s wise approach to the wearing of the pink, will have Komen seeing enough red that they will finally say so long to Planned Parenthood. Once can only hope and pray. In the meantime two of the most worthy breast cancer research organizations will finally get at least some of the attention and the funding they so greatly deserve.
Teresa’s latest book, Extreme Makeover: Women Transformed by Christ, Not Conformed to the Culture has been on the Catholic best-seller list since its release in October, 2011.
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