Well, the American Cancer Society has responded.
If you can call it that.
For two days, the American Cancer Society’s Facebook page has been deluged with posts from angry atheists — and some angry believers — about their refusal to let the Foundation Beyond Belief participate as a national team in the Relay for Life, and their turning down a $250,000 matching offer from the Todd Stiefel Foundation to make this happen. They have finally responded. Here, in total, is their response.
During the past couple of days we’ve heard your comments and we understand your concerns. Like you, many of us have been touched by cancer.
The American Cancer Society fights for everyone, everywhere, but it’s going to take all of us fighting together to end cancer. It’s clear that the American Cancer Society and Foundation Beyond Belief share a passion for saving lives.
We welcome FBB’s participation at our local Relay For Life events and we have not turned down their donations. We have shared this information with FBB and hope they know we welcome their ongoing support and involvement.
Right. Except that nobody’s disputing any of that. The AlterNet article about this matter made it clear that the American Cancer Society would accept money from the Foundation Beyond Belief, and that they would welcome the FBB’s participation in the Relay for Life at the local level. They just refused any participation from the FBB in the Relay for Life as a national team — despite the fact that many organizations similar to the FBB are participating at this level. They denied this national participation after initially okaying it, and after weeks of evasions and changed stories. Attempts to find a solution were repeatedly shot down. And the explanations they gave, both to Stiefel at the time, and to me when I was interviewing them about the situation, were not only vague, but conflicting. As detailed in the story.
Really? This is the best they can do? A bland, generic press release that evades the actual topic at hand and the actual questions being asked about it? With a passive- aggressive little scold about how “it’s going to take all of us fighting together to end cancer,” and therefore atheists should just shut up about it when we get treated as pariahs?
Move to strike as non-responsive.