Michigan Knights of Columbus Won’t Back Komen Over Planned Parenthood

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 25, 2011   |   7:55PM   |   Lansing, MI

When Komen for the Cure starts its latest round of walks and other fundraising activities, the local chapters in Michigan will no longer be able to count on the support of the Knights of Columbus.

After reviewing the Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s relationship with Planned Parenthood, the State Deputy of the Michigan Jurisdiction of the Knights of Columbus ruled that no Knights of Columbus council in Michigan can raise money for or affiliate itself with Komen.

The Komen Foundation admits to encouraging affiliates to give money to Planned Parenthood, America’s leading abortion business, and its chapters gave Planned Parenthood $731,303  in 2009 and have given the abortion business $3.3 million from 2004-2009, according to its own figures.

Kenneth Unterbrink of the Knights of Columbus, in a February letter, writes, “We, as Knights of Columbus, have publicly stated our opposition to abortion and embryonic stem cell research. By their own admission, Komen supports Planned Parenthood, and they plan to continue their support for Planned Parenthood.”

“We, the Knights of Columbus of Michigan, should take a stand against any organization that funds, or even in part, supports an organization that holds a position that is contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church and in opposition to the years of dedicated support for life by the Michigan Knights,” he continues.

Thomas A. Marcetti, Sr., the State Deputy, also wrote a letter to requiring Knights of Columbus councils to no longer raise funds for or affiliate with the Komen Foundation.

“By their own admission, Susan G. Komen for the Cure has encouraged the support of Planned Parenthood, and local branches have given substantial support (more than three million dollars over the past five years). Despite attempts to rationalize this position, I feel that, as your State Deputy, it is my duty to take decisive action,” he wrote on February 15.

“Effective immediately, no council or assembly of the Knights of the Columbus in the Michigan Jurisdiction may host a fund raiser, sponsor or cosponsor an event, or take part in any activities associated with or in connection with a local, or the national council of Komen. Furthermore, no council or assembly shall sanction the use of their council names, the name “Knights of Columbus” in general, or allow the emblem of the Order to be associated in print or other media with Susan G. Komen for the Cure,” he added.

The letter also requires individual Knights to not support Komen because of the Planned Parenthood ties.

“Individuals may not allow their name to be used, hold office in Susan G. Komen for the Cure, or participate in any activities with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, as by doing so their actions will give scandal to or may imply to the community that the Knights of Columbus supports Susan G. Komen for the Cure,” Marcetti says. “The State Board has reviewed this issue and unanimously supported the actions taken.”

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation has long denied that abortion plays any role in elevating the risk for women of contracting the deadly disease. That’s despite a wealth of research over decades showing an average increased risk of about 40 percent for women having abortions compared to those who carry their pregnancy to term. But the contributions Komen affiliates make to Planned Parenthood, which does more than 25 percent of all abortions in the United States and aggressively promotes abortion abroad, provide another sources of frustration for pro-life people who otherwise would support the group.

A January 2010 study called abortion a “known risk factor” for breast cancer and cited a study conducted by the prestigious Janet Daling group of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. Daling and her colleagues showed between a 20 and 50 percent increased breast cancer risk for women having abortions compare to those who carried their pregnancies to term.

And microbiologist Dr. Gerard Nadal, who has a PhD in Molecular Microbiology from St John’s University in New York, has spent 16 years teaching science, most recently at Manhattan College, has been profiling more than 100 studies on his blog showing abortion’s link to breast cancer.

Another problem for pro-life advocates is the fact that Planned Parenthood is reducing the number of breast cancer screenings while increasing its abortions. According to the 2008 Annual Report from Planned Parenthood, breast cancer services decreased by 4% and abortion procedures increased by 6%.