Saturday, February 4, 2012

Needless to Say

Needless to say – given the viral explosion of outrage – most of us have heard about the disturbing events between the nation's leading breast cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure and Planned Parenthood.

Needless to say, people far more eloquent than me have written about all the various aspects of this debacle.

Needless to say, I am hardly the only one who was left utterly sick when I heard the news of Komen’s choice on NPR. When I received’s petition in my email inbox, I could hardly believe what I was reading; my eyes went so blurry, I couldn't focus on the words.

Needless to say, in light of this affair, we are reminded of various sad truths:

1) Bullying takes many shapes and forms.

2) Politics has no business being involved in health care, except that with health care being such a big business, politics is involved in health care, and not necessarily in the individual’s best interest.

3) Women’s health care is still wrapped around the issue of abortion, despite the fact that abortion is a legal and safe procedure, and like much of women’s reproductive health, it is a deeply private and personal matter and choice.

4) Because of abortion, politics is especially involved in women’s health care. The abortion issue is controversial enough that it can drive a historically apolitical organization to privilege politics over women’s lives. When an organization that was started to save women’s lives devalues women to the extent that it is willing to put politics before the very lives it hopes to save, we are all left devalued.

I am thankful for Planned Parenthood and for what it provides to millions of women. But I am sad and sick to realize – not for the first time – how little we value women, our health, and the precautions that keep us healthy. Even with Planned Parenthood, women's health care in this country is lacking. It's about time we got outraged about it.


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