Earlier this year, the Susan G. Komen Foundation found itself in a hot mess because it decided to cut funding to Planned Parenthood rather unceremoniously. One day after the announcement, billionaire, philanthropist, and current New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg promised a $250,000 dollar-for-dollar matching program to help make up for what Planned Parenthood lost in Komen funds (see Bloomberg Philanthropies: New York City Grants).
Well, we all know what happened next…Komen changed its mind. But Michael Bloomberg did not. In the four days after Komen's announcement, donations for Planned Parenthood reached $3 million (See IP's guide: Fundraising for Reproductive Health). Bloomberg had to make good on his promise almost immediately after he promised the money. But, what's $250,000 to a man worth $22 billion? I'm sure cutting a quarter-million dollar check in a matter of days didn't put Bloomberg behind on his mortgage.
Bloomberg claims he made the donation to take a stand, stating something about politics having no place in health care. Well, maybe in Bloomberg's world, but politics most assuredly does have a place in health care even if no one wants it to be there, it's still there. It's an unfortunate truth.
Speaking of Planned Parenthood, do you know who doesn't have a place there? Comedian and author of I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell, Tucker Max. Earlier this year, Max decided he wanted to revamp his image, as some perceive his comedy as misogynistic and degrading toward women in general. Max decided to donate $500,000 to Planned Parenthood in Texas, even making the drive himself. Initially, they were all for it, but on the day Max was to drive three hours to drop off the check, Planned Parenthood called and said, basically, "Thanks, but no thanks. We don't like you, so we aren't taking your money."
Planned Parenthood turned down the half-million dollar donation even after Texas governor Rick Perry cut all local government funding to Planned Parenthood and prevented the organization from receiving $35 million in federal funding. To it's credit, Planned Parenthood has the right to turn down donations from whomever it chooses. They don't like Tucker Max, so be it, but as the authored stated: "I thought Planned Parenthood’s mission was about helping women, not passing judgment on humor."