A strong statement from Aspen Komen | AspenTimes.com

A strong statement from Aspen Komen

Dear Editor:

Two significant events in recent news highlight the effect that one’s action, or inaction, can have on others.

One event involved a famous football coach who failed to protect somebody. In this event Joe Paterno, the extremely successful football coach at Penn State, was very likely aware that somebody in his authority was sexually abusing a young man. Paterno chose to not do anything with his authority. The end result was that others were abused, legal action is being taken, and lives were ruined.

The other event involved a foundation that raises money for breast cancer research and awareness. In this instance that foundation, the Roaring Fork Valley and Aspen branch of the Susan B. Komen Foundation, was told they had to do something that was contrary to their beliefs. The Susan B. Komen Foundation helped support Planned Parenthood, which educates women about health issues. As part of its platform Planned Parenthood also supported women who chose to terminate pregnancies with abortion.

Because of Planned Parenthood’s involvement with abortion, the national Komen board (which appeared to be succumbing to political pressure) was dictating to the local board that they could no longer participate in any funding for Planned Parenthood. The local board took the position that their role was in educating women, specifically as their health related to breast cancer.

The local board believed that Planned Parenthood’s role in educating women was far too important to let politics impede that function.

The local board chose to honor their conscience and continue to fund Planned Parenthood, even if it meant breaking off from the national Susan B Komen organization. The end result is that the national Komen board has reconsidered its position and will continue to give funds to Planned Parenthood. The outcome of this second event involving the Komen Foundation is that education will be furthered and women will have greater understanding of their choices.

We are continually faced with choices. I thank the local Komen board for the decision they made, not only because of the outcome of their choices in the immediate moral arena, but for the statement it makes for all of us.

John McCormick



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