Handel resignation from Komen draws swift reaction on social media

February 07, 2012|By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
  • Karen Handel, in a file photo from 2010, resigned from Susan G. Komen for the Cure on Tuesday. Reaction in social media circles was swift.
Karen Handel, in a file photo from 2010, resigned from Susan G. Komen for… (John Bazemore / Associated…)

Social media sites were once again alive with people posting their reactions to the latest in the Susan G. Komen for the Cure saga. On Tuesday, Komen Vice President Karen Handel resigned from her position at the breast cancer foundation after being accused by some of instigating the group's decision to stop funding Planned Parenthood (Komen rescinded the decision late last week).

"I am deeply disappointed by the gross mischaracterizations of the strategy, its rationale, and my involvement in it," Handel's resignation letter read. "I openly acknowledge my role in the matter and continue to believe our decision was the best one for Komen's future and the women we serve."

Most people applauded the resignation, but some threw their support behind Handel.

Tweets were going out as soon as the news broke. "Anyone still think it wasn't political?" said @danaCreative. "Don't let the door hit ya on the way out," @book_faerie tweeted.

Said @Ladidahdi: "For me, Handel resigning from #Komen means nothing if the mentality of politics before people is still in place at the organization." A tweet from @eprangley said, "Handel @Komen resigns. About 4 days 2 late according to my damage control calendar."

And in a tweet that's sure to be retweeted, @KRMarlo said, "BREAKING: Karen Handel resigns as chair of #Komen. Farewell letter states, 'I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!' "

On Komen's Facebook page most commenters seemed happy that Handel was out the door.

"She should have been fired and brinker too," said Tom Shitara. "I still dont trust komens' den of right wing republicans and wing nut monthly donations will go directly to more pink products for me."

"I applaud Handel's resignation," said Lynn White. "Thank you, Komen. Now it would be best for your organization if you ceased your pillow talk with the anti-choice mongers. Focus on breast cancer prevention and treatment. Isn't that your actual, stated--and laudable--mission??"

"What a mess you've made!" said Emerald Crafton. "This might be the biggest PR gaffe I have witnessed in my lifetime. The bottom line is Handel was hired, who hired her? She was very upfront about her political agenda. This only leads me to conclude that the powers that be in SGK are happy to attempt to flex muscle to further this sort of agenda."

Shaunte' Mcclin wrote this in support of Handel: What a Brave woman! God bless you Karen Handel." Said Cheryl Miller,"God Bless Karen Handel. God Bless America and the slippery slope it is on morally!"

On Komen's message forums LindaT posted this: "Even with the resignation of Handel, your organization has come across as very dishonest. In Handel's resignation, she still denies that politics had anything to do with the decision. Why can't Komen's admit that the policy was targeted at PP? I don't think your organization can be trusted any more and what I would like to see, is an investigation of your organization. I would like to see where your funds go and who else is descriminated against."

"Handel's resignation is cause to celebrate but we need to keep vigilant to make sure that SGK stays on a non-political path," said beeg. "SGK has not promised to continue funding PP and has already teed up the issue for the next attempt to defund: 'pass through services.' Watch for any moves over the next year that would indicate a change in SGK stance on the importance of self exams etc. If that stuff changes, PP may be in danger again."

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