Friday, February 3, 2012

It's a pro-life thing

Recently, the organization Susan G. Komen for the Cure stopped providing Planned Parenthood grant money to support free cancer screenings of low-income and impoverished women at their locations. According to the Komen organization, this is because of a new policy which states that any group will become ineligible for grants if they are under investigation by any local, state, or federal agency. Planned Parenthood is currently under such an investigation in Florida to determine if the group used federal funds for abortions, which is against the law.

The problem, though, is that the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization did not stop grants to other groups that are under investigations. In particular, they are continuing to give money to Penn State, the school that is currently being investigated in regards to the Jerry Sandusky sex scandal.

What many believe, and what is likely the case, is that the new VP of Komen, Karen Handel, stopped the grant to PP because she is an outspoken opponent of a woman's right to choose. This would explain why Komen has stopped funding to PP on the pretext that they are under investigation, but have not done the same thing in regards to Penn State.

The reason this really upsets me is that the money given by Komen was not being used to fund abortion. It was being used to provide free, probably life-saving, cancer screening to low-income women. An organization whose sole purpose is to raise and distribute money for cancer research and prevention has now stopped funding preventative care for the poor because their VP is pro-life. It's astounding that one person's personal opinion is being used to deny women access to preventative cancer screenings. It's apalling, and apparently I'm not the only one who thinks so.

I've talked with some people, who say that these women can go elsewhere for their cancer screenings. That may be true, but the fact that a fund to help stop cancer would pull funding for cancer screening is still mind-boggling.

I suppose I shouldn't be all that surprised. After all, the whole premise of the pro-life movement is that the rights of an individual woman are trumped by the opinions of others and the rights of an unborn child. While it's sad that abortion kills an innocent life, and I am personally pro-life, I understand that I don't understand a woman's perspective, and I don't know what is best for that individual. We can't legislate and dictate what people believe, who they are, and what they feel. We can't mandate morality because it is an individual choice. And while a child may be lost to abortion, isn't the life of the mother worth something too? Isn't that still a personal choice, and doesn't that woman have to live with it?

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