Saturday, February 4, 2012

Back, again!

It’s been a while, hasn’t it?  To any regular readers whom I may have had, I apologize.  My last entry was on April 2nd and, as I look back on the last 10 months, which were filled with a daily medical treatment schedule “down island” for my partner (and recently wedded spouse), I had no time for anything but what was essential.  I shall have some observations in the coming weeks about the current state of medicine from my experience of a caregiver but, for now, what is propelling me back to my computer and website, was the shocking announcement by the Susan G. Komen For the Cure Foundation to stop its funding for Planned Parenthood.
As everyone who has been close to a computer, tv or a newspaper now knows, Komen has reversed its decision--at least for the moment.  Amid  unprecedented outpourings of outrage from women’s groups, women’s health services organizations and ordinary citizens who have been concerned about the yanking of vital health services from women who could not otherwise afford them, the Komen Foundation disavowed its decision and apologized for its original announcement.  The Komen reversal was accompanied by double talk that even in this current election year hit a new high (or should I say a new low?) for obfuscation. 
Amid all the bluster and the blather, we are still not certain that Planned Parenthood’s future funding from Komen will be secure.  It is clear that behind all the words is a rightwing political agenda to defund Planned Parenthood because in addition to mammography, the organization also offers contraception, STD information and abortions.  All of these are anathema to some conservative religious groups.
NOW’s President Terry O’Neill sent out a strong statement after Komen made its reversal announcement.  After congratulating Komen for backing down, O’Neill urged a “watchful waiting” caution.  While waiting to see what Komen would do next, the NOW President called for at least the firing of its new Senior Vice President Karen Handel, whom O’Neill called “...an extremist anti-choice politician with a vendetta against Planned Parenthood.” [Here]  
While we wait to see if there will be another chapter to this story, it would be worth a moment to remember Margaret Sanger who founded the first birth control clinic in 1916 which led to her arrest for distributing such information.  
And while our attention is focused on a brave American female leader, why is it that there is not one American woman whose birthday is remembered and celebrated each year although the list of such women is long and distinguished?  Why not start with Margaret Sanger?  (She was born on September 14, 1879.)  [Here]

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