From pink ribbons and pink socks to rosy-hued footballs, there are endless things you can buy to support breast cancer awareness. Until just recently, you could even get pink editions of the Holman Christian Standard Bible.
But on Wednesday, Nashville-based LifeWay Christian Resources, which sells the “Here’s Hope Breast Cancer Awareness Bible,” pulled the book from store shelves at Walmart and other retailers, because some of its proceeds — $1 from every book — went to the charity, Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, which has ties to Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood offers breast exams for women, but, of course, it also offers other sexual health services, including birth control, testing for sexually transmitted infections, and abortion. Controversy bubbled up when anti-abortion websites began pointing out that some Komen affiliates had granted money to Planned Parenthood. LifeWay’s CEO Thom S. Rainer released a statement, explaining:
We made a mistake. … When our leadership discovered the overwhelming concern that some of Komen’s affiliates were giving funds to Planned Parenthood, we began the arduous process of withdrawing this Bible from the market. Though we have assurances that Komen’s funds are used only for breast cancer screening and awareness, it is not in keeping with LifeWay’s core values to have even an indirect relationship with Planned Parenthood.
For its part, the Komen Foundation expressed disappointment over the recall and emphasized that all of the money raised since the bible’s debut in October has gone directly to breast cancer-related services, and none to abortion services. “Annually, Komen Affiliates fund programs that provide breast health education and breast screenings for hundreds of thousands of low-income, uninsured or medically underserved women via nearly 2,000 local organizations, including 19 Planned Parenthood programs,” the foundation said in a statement.
Unfortunately, the only losers in the controversy are women who need breast cancer screening. “I don’t think it is very Christian to take money from poor women who were … receiving mammograms with that money,” a Komen supporter, Darlene Jacobs, told The Tennessean. “Are all the Christians going to boycott Komen altogether, or is it this one particular thing they are mad about?”