This has been an uncharacteristically bad week for Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
First, out of nowhere, they announced that they were halting almost $700,000 in mammography funding through Planned Parenthood of America, the country's foremost profiteer from abortions.
Then, after the predictably severe backlash from the nation's media and leftist politicians, Komen haltingly scrambled to construct a flimsy excuse dealing mostly with a Congressional investigation of Planned Parenthood.
An investigation few people knew had been started, and even fewer believed had nothing to do with right-wing politics.
Then today, Komen abruptly reversed course, apologizing to the American public for its "recent decisions that cast doubt upon our commitment to our mission of saving women's lives."
For two days, Komen had been in the unprecedented position of asserting that its actions had nothing to do with abortion politics, and everything to do with streamlining their processes for donating to mammography causes and avoiding liabilities related to groups under some sort of investigation.
Then today, Komen made it official: even if it wasn't political before, it sure is now! Political through-and-through.
Talk about a completely-botched PR campaign. Well, for Komen anyway. Plannned Parenthood is getting tons of free advertising, sympathy, and even donations, like the quarter-million-dollar gift from New York's socially-liberal mayor, Michael Bloomberg.
No word of whether, now that Komen is restoring funding "to" Planned Parenthood, Bloomberg's check won't be cancelled. But you can assume that a lot of brand-new support for Komen has just evaporated.
I am anti-abortion, and for years, I've grumbled that Komen has used abortion advocate Planned Parenthood to help fund mammography initiatives. According to the research I've seen - from both pro-life groups like Live Action and Planned Parenthood itself - the money actually didn't go to the abortionists themselves; they simply funneled the money they received from Komen to agencies that actually conducted the mammographies. Indeed, there isn't a Planned Parenthood clinic in the country with any mammography apparatus.
Let me repeat that: Planned Parenthood does not provide mammograms. They're simply a referral service to agencies that do.
So, why shouldn't Komen simply skip the middleman, Planned Parenthood, and divert its funding to the mammography clinics themselves? Of course, in doing so, they should have realized that they'd have to lay the groundwork for a sophisticated public relations campaign to convince the public that efficiencies were their true motivation, not pro-life politics. But considering how effective Komen has been in marketing the pink ribbon for breast cancer awareness, and staging hugely popular "races for the cure" across the country, it's baffling that they would drop the ball so badly on what should have been a simple accounting diversion.
They even still insist on awkwardly highlighting their investigation concerns.
Technically, Komen's press release reads in part, "we will amend the criteria to make clear that disqualifying
investigations must be criminal and conclusive in nature and not
political. That is what is right and fair."
In other words, they're trying to preserve a shred of credibility by appearing to take a high road and clarifying the type of investigation a partner agency has to be undergoing before Komen will withdraw funding. But it's all too little too late. Komen's credibility has been blown out of the water. Either their original idea for withdrawing funding wasn't logical enough in terms of accounting efficiencies and liability control, or it really was based on politics, and they lied to the public. Now, they're bowing to pressure that is clearly left-wing and political in nature, meaning that Komen is more interested in appearance than integrity.
Whatever middle road they may have been trying to navigate before all of this has been washed-out. Sending money to Planned Parenthood under the tolerable guise of mammogram funding, and convincing many pro-life women to join their pink crusade based on the merits of cancer research while ignoring the little sideline with a major abortion provider, has worked for years. Komen did just enough good for pro-lifers to pretty much leave them alone, because a non-political comfort level kept everything stable.
Not any more. Komen has literally - and willfully - shot both of its feet.
Kinda hard to race for the cure that way, isn't it?
Note: For an update on this topic, please click here.