Dear Susan G. Komen Foundation - My mother died, way too early, from (another kind of) cancer. And she dedicated her career to teen mothers and to giving women choices and adequate care. Your decision is an insult to her and to every woman across this country who has struggled with any kind of health issues — and those who support them. For shame.
SGK Foundation reversed their position yesterday (after a brief retrenchment where they said the issue was not in fact a political one, but because Planned Parenthood did not offer mammograms — though SGK itself does not recommend mammograms for women under 40 and the vast majority of PP clients are in their 20s and early 30s), and several people have asked me if I am still mad. Well, in fact, I'm even more angry.
You see, if you're dealing with cancer, you're dealing with a real disease that kills fiercely and indiscriminately and, even in the "survivors," irretrievably damages their lives. If you are going to make a major policy stand, you owe it to those people to carefully consider all elements of it BEFORE you make the big press announcement. And if you make that decision, you had damn well better have a good reason for it and stand behind it.
To me, the whole thing reeks of a "women are stupid" mentality, where we just won't notice or protest when something is fundamentally unfair. But the truth is that we do, and through Twitter and Facebook and other kinds of social media we made that known. It's a brave new work out there, and you:
Dr. Lefall (and others) need to know that it has changed.
You may have changed, but I haven't. And it will be a cold day in hell before I put any money toward a pink mug, or mixer, or handgun (yes, that came out this week too, they have truly lost their minds). Or support your vendors (goodbye 20 year Yoplait habit). Or give money (sorry, Walk for the Cure friends).
You may retrench, but I don't forget.
For a fascinating discussion of the whole pink movement in breast cancer, read Barbara Ehrenreich's Bright-Sided. It will change your life.