February 28, 2011

The Komen Kontroversy

The Komen Foundation (Walk for the Cure), which raises funds ostensibly for breast cancer research, has diverted funds to the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood. This is not breaking news – some Komen affiliates have donated more than $3 million to Planned Parenthood since 2003.

For the record, most of the funds raised by Komen Foundation are used for legitimate research into breast cancer prevention and cure, and any organization as large as Komen is going to have affiliates who make decisions that offend the national organization’s mandate, mission and policies.

However, Komen’s national foundation board is now defending the diversion of its funds to abortion providers. Because most people who support Komen do so under the assumption their support was used for breast cancer research, Komen Foundation’s endorsement of this diversion, rather than condemnation of the same, is inexcusable.

Not only is Komen Foundation defending “pink” donations to abortion providers, they are attempting to debunk the relationship between abortion and breast cancer, devoting a special section on their website listing selective studies supporting that position. (Apparently they read AlGore’s “human-induced global warming” playbook.)

However, according to Dr. Angela Lanfranchi, a breast surgical oncologist and co-director of the Steeplechase Cancer Center, “29 out of 38 worldwide epidemiological studies show an increased risk of breast cancer of approximately 30% among women who have had an abortion.” The Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer concludes, “It cannot be said that all women who have breast cancer have had abortions. Similarly, not all women who have had abortions will get breast cancer. Nevertheless, abortion is the most preventable risk factor for breast cancer.”

Typical of the research findings is the International Journal of Epidemiology study which concluded, “Odds ratios were significantly elevated among those with an induced abortion.”

Regarding efforts to cover up the abortion/breast cancer risk, Dr. Edward Furton, Editor of Ethics and Medics, writes, “There is a great deal at stake here. When the public learns that the causal link between abortion and breast cancer has been downplayed by the scientific community – for reasons that are ideological rather than factual – the feeling of betrayal will be strong.”

My point here is not to argue the efficacy of abortion as a causal factor in breast cancer, but to suggest that Komen Foundation’s board should conclude, as a matter of policy, that raising money for breast cancer research and diverting any of it to abortion providers is patently wrong.

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