The Susan G. Komen Planned Parenthood smackdown that has been a massive story across the blogosphere just got a new and interesting twist.
After ostensibly bleeding donations and goodwill over the past few days and becoming basically a pariah in progressive America due to the decision to remove funding from Planned Parenthood in what appeared to be an entirely politically-based move, the organization has turned tail and now says that it has amended the controversial policy that sparked the defunding. Initially, Komen’s excuse was that the Planned Parenthood defunding was due to the fact that the organization was “under investigation.”
Blogs and news sites were quick to point out that Komen did not remove, say, it’s $7+ million grant to Penn State, which is also under investigation. Nor did it appear that the charity had any interest in determining whether any other recipients of its funds were being investigated at any level- lending credence to the notion that the policy was enacted purely to cut ties with Planned Parenthood and only Planned Parenthood.
But in a decision that is likely to please no one, Komen has again reversed its position- saying that only criminal investigations are covered by the “investigations” clause and Komen will restore its relationship with Planned Parenthood. For their part, it seems that Planned Parenthood has only benefited from Komen’s defunding- donations to the organization have skyrocketed, social media has been abuzz with users pledging to “stand with Planned Parenthood,” and even NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg has pledged a quarter of a million bucks to help replace some of the funding removed by Komen.
Komen says in the release:
Our original desire was to fulfill our fiduciary duty to our donors by not funding grant applications made by organizations under investigation. 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.
The charity continues:
Our only goal for our granting process is to support women and families in the fight against breast cancer. Amending our criteria will ensure that politics has no place in our grant process. We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities.
Unfortunately for Komen, the decision is only likely to alienate those that rallied closer after it terminated its relationship with Planned Parenthood, and the org has a tough row to hoe if it wishes to win back its womens issues-forward base. Will you forgive Komen for throwing Planned Parenthood under the bus?