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Breast Cancer Research Giant Funds Planned Parenthood

Bradley Mattes   |   October 01, 2002

Do you think it odd that the largest private funding source for breast cancer research is giving sizeable grants to entities whose activities actually cause breast cancer? You aren’t the only one, but that’s exactly what is happening.

First, some background information on this monolithic fundraising organization. The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation was founded in 1982 by Nancy Goodman Brinker after losing her sister, Susan Komen, to breast cancer. According to their latest annual report, the Foundation and its affiliates have raised, in sum, over $300 million and have made more than 600 grants totaling over $70 million.

The key to Komen’s financial success has been its annual Race For the Cure, a 5K run/fitness walk, which began as a single event in Dallas in 1983 and has grown to over 100 races with over one million participants. The 2000 event raised $83 million, which represented sixty-three percent of Komen’s total gross revenue.

Komen has a network of over 70,000 volunteers and 100 staff members. They have affiliate groups in more than 110 cities in the United States and have a presence in Italy, Germany and Greece. Local affiliates keep up to seventy-five percent of the funds they raise. A minimum of twenty-five percent is given to the national headquarters.

Most people are familiar with the Race For the Cure and have a positive impression of the organization. Many pro-lifers have themselves participated in one or more of the races. The Komen Foundation’s mission is indeed noble. They want to “eradicate breast cancer as a life-threatening disease by advancing research, education screening and treatment.” However, there is a darker side to the Komen Foundation that many are just now becoming aware of.

Several affiliates of the Komen Foundation have given grants to Planned Parenthood, the largest single promoter and provider of abortion in America. In Denver, for example, not only did they give nearly $200,000 to Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, they awarded over $18,000 to the Boulder Valley Women’s Health Center, a notorious, late-term abortion clinic.

Komen grants to the abortion industry are usually categorized as funding for education or screening. They make a good faith effort to see that the funds are used for the designated purpose. However, this is no guarantee against commingling of funds with abortion services.

The irony of affiliates of the largest, private funding source for breast cancer research giving grants to Planned Parenthood should escape no one. Twenty-eight out of thirty-seven worldwide studies have independently linked abortion with breast cancer. Seven studies report a more than twofold-increased risk.

Joel Brind, Ph.D., is a professor of biology and endocrinology at Baruch College of the City University of New York and the leading expert in the abortion/breast cancer connection. When we apply his calculations to Planned Parenthood, we come up with the following grim estimation. Since 1977, Planned Parenthood has performed over three million abortions. Sound medical research indicates that they may be responsible for 22,500 additional deaths of women due to breast cancer as a result of their abortions.

Why is Komen funding one of the root causes of breast cancer? The answer may lie with its founder. Nancy Goodman Brinker has strong ties to the Planned Parenthood of Dallas and Northeast Texas affiliate. She currently sits on their Advisory Council and was the 1996 recipient of the Gertrude Shelburne Humanitarian Award. This award was named for the woman who was primarily responsible for founding this local PP organization. It is a sad case of political philosophy taking precedence over the fundamental mission of the Komen Foundation – with tragic results for the women they strive to protect.

Call to Action
First, do research to find out if your local Komen affiliate is indeed funding Planned Parenthood or another entity of the abortion industry. If a women’s health clinic is listed, check to see if they perform or refer for abortions.

Second, if your local affiliate has a connection to the abortion industry, meet with those in charge. Calmly and rationally share the medical research that demonstrates a link between abortion and breast cancer. Here is an Internet link that will provide you with documentation: Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer. Also explain the extent to which Planned Parenthood is involved with abortion. The following link will connect you to PP’s latest statistics on abortion: STOPP International.

Ask for a firm commitment, preferably in writing, that Planned Parenthood or any entity of the abortion industry will no longer be a beneficiary of their funds. If they agree, thank them and urge people to continue to support the positive things the Komen Foundation does. If they refuse to separate themselves from the abortion industry, there are steps you can take.

In the same calm and rational fashion, meet with the local sponsors of the Run For the Cure race and ask them to withdraw their support. Also begin notifying the pro-lifers in your community by writing an article in your local pro-life publication, listing those sponsors who have refused to withdraw their support. Distribute the information to pro-life churches and organizations. Write letters to the editor and consider taking out a newspaper ad in the weeks prior to the event. If you have a sympathetic local newspaper, ask them to write an article. The controversy and media attention this generates will help educate the public to the link between abortion and breast cancer, while exposing Planned Parenthood’s aggressive role in the abortion industry, at the expense of women’s health.

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