Thursday, October 22, 2009

Susan G. Komen Responds

I received this response earlier from Susan G. Komen:

Thanks for reaching out. Sorry it has taken me a bit to respond about the breast cancer awareness events advocates from the United States and across the Middle East are attending Oct. 21-27 in Egypt. There have been reports that some of the invited participants would not be allowed to attend these events. Susan G. Komen for the Cure has now received clarification that all are invited to fully participate in events to bring breast cancer to the forefront of public discussion in the Middle East. I can tell you that Susan G. Komen for the Cure remains steadfast in our mission to save lives and end breast cancer forever everywhere.

This response, while technically well-written, is simply inadequate. What does it mean that "all are fully invited to participate?" The conference is going on now and traveling from Israel to Egypt isn't exactly like getting from NYC to Las Vegas.

What the organization should have said is something along the lines of, "We deplore such actions and will not tolerate our good name to be smeared by such prejudice and hatred. Breast cancer is a global problem that ignores race, religion and nationality, as does Susan G. Komen. As a result, we will no longer directly participate in this event."

Instead, the official line is tepid, at best.

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