Letters

It could be worse

RE: “Abortion at Sea

06/23/00

Even though US women still have a long way to go, I never imagined the low status women have outside of the western world. I have lived in the Middle East now for nine years and had the privilege to meet many people from all parts of the Arab world, Asia, and Africa. I became enlightened through these friendships as to the status of many women that come from these regions. I have heard horror stories that shocked and sickened me beyond my previous comprehension. To say that women are second-class citizens in some parts of the world is a gross understatement. There are places where females are regarded as not much more than farm animals, where it is common practice for women to be bought and sold in the sex industry or as human brood mares, where births and deaths of girls and women are not even recorded, where families mourn the birth of female children, and where untold numbers of female infants are killed at birth.

One of the most basic rights a woman should have is to be able to control her fertility and conversely, one of the best ways to subjugate a woman is to not allow her these choices. That is what is being practiced in many parts of the world today. What this Dutch doctor is doing falls far short of helping those in most need, but if even one unfortunate victim in the world is helped, it is for the good.

Peter J. Jones



It’s about Roe vs. Wade

RE: “Fetal Abuse

06/23/00

This is one of the most frightening reports that I have ever read. It is yet another attempt by the “establishment” (for lack of a better word) to change people’s behavior by punishing them, which has historically not worked well, especially for drug problems.

These women, especially Sally DeJesus, do not deserve to be jailed, or to have her child taken away, for one mistake. However, I cannot necessarily say that I am overly surprised. This is one of the most blatant attempts to undermine Roe v. Wade, and I’m sure that the courts will jump on these new policies and bills with both feet. What amazed me (and disgusted me) the most was the opinion of South Carolina’s Henderson County Sheriff’s quote that “Alcohol is not illegal, cocaine is.” This statement just proves to me that the top priority among these so-called “officials” is persecution, not the welfare of the child or the mother.

Hopefully, the trend will shift again, but I wonder how many families will be ripped apart, and how many children will die because lack of prenatal care, before that happens.

Julia Hudson



“Typical and sad.”

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/23/00

Typical and sad. Just another game of “lets pass the buck.” The government “toughens up” on border crossings which leads to high mortality rates. In turn however, the INS’ policy is one of “compassion” for the injured “illegal”; they send them to the hospital for treatment without ever checking for identification on route to the hospital (how hard could that be?). By doing so they create a loophole (out of their “compassion of course) where the government is free and clear of any financial responsibility and thereby sticking it to the hospital and it’s care providers.

Gee, is it any coincidence that this somehow aligns with the eroding of socialized medical programs in the US? Nah, couldn’t be.

John Crand



…and they hightailed it down to Mexico

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/22/00

“The Mexican government pays for medical care for aliens in its country, and likewise believes the US should pay for the treatment of aliens here, says Rita Vargas, Mexico’s consul general in El Centro.”

The Mexican government must be getting a huge laugh out of that load of crap. I wonder how many Americans are scurrying illegally to the paradise of Mexico and then cadging free medical care in their fine health care system.

Doug Wakeman



I think that Mexico should be billed and forced to pay for all expenses incurred by its citizens who are here illegally. Mexico encourages in most cases and forces in others the illegal migration of its people across our border. They are aiding and abetting this crime against their own for political and economic advantage.

Larry Vance
Douglas, Az.



Corruption in Kosovo

RE: “Vigilante Journalism

06/22/00

The claim that the closing of Dita would damage the media is laughable. Since when do newspapers get to decide who is guilty and purposefully set them up for retribution? In the current climate of Albanian and Serb vigilante activity, some attempt has to be made to establish the rule of law. The Albanian press does nothing to advance the cause of a democratic and peaceful Kosovo.

R. Heffron


Kosovo is beginning to resemble Albania. Once the intolerence and the corruption are more clearly revealed, the UN will have no choice but to impose harsher rules.

Steve Bujenovic
Baton Rouge, LA



Make Rhode Island pay

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/21/00

If the federal government won’t help the border hospitals then they are going to end up closing. The people who are going to be hurt the most are the people who live in those areas. Too many Americans who don’t live in the border states don’t really give a damn.

Donna Pillar
Texas



Watch that door …

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/21/00

I think it gross malfeasance of duty for the Border Patrol to treat any illegal any differently than any other illegal, with the obvious exception of seeing that he or she receives the necessary medical care.

After treatment, sayonara. Don’t let the door at the border hit you on the butt. INS spokesperson Sharon Gavin is concerned about compassion. So am I. What does that have to do with performing the mission of the Border Patrol, that of ensuring that every illegal is returned to his country of origin? First the compassion, then the job.

This would ensure that we do everything possible to stop this horde of illegals pouring across our southern border every day. Anything else is insanity.

Richard Humphries
Elfrida, Ariz.



Send ’em home

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/21/00

I think we need to do more to stop the Mexicans from crossing the border. Keep them on their side of the border and the costs will likewise stay there.

This is the United States — not Mexico. We have other things to do with our hard-earned tax money then spend it on illegal aliens.

Charles Cameron



Send ’em the bill

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/21/00

Perhaps the border hospitals should bill the Mexican government for medical care. After all, Mexico has done little to improve the economic conditions of its citizens which is the reason they risk catastrophe to enter the US illegally.

Nancy



Just close them

RE: “Border Hospitals on the Brink

06/21/00

I’ve worked ER’s in Kansas, Colorado, Missouri, Texas, and Illinois and can’t get over the abuse of emergency services by illegal aliens. The maddening thing is that we are at the mercy of Uncle Sam who doesn’t give a rat’s patootie that we have to provide these services for free at the expense of the American taxpayer.

We should stop coddling illegals. We shouldn’t provide any medical services unless it’s life or death and we shouldn’t be educating their children for free and providing them with food stamps and Medicaid eligibility. I don’t blame them for wanting to come here but we need limits and some common sense. If not, then someday you can kiss your hospitals goodbye because the hospitals can’t go on like this forever.

Perhaps most of these hospitals should just quit and close their doors and let the citizens call Washington to complain that the government’s unfunded mandates have denied them access to medical care!

Don Miller, M.D.
Belleville, Ill.

 



Congressional swine

RE: “Wisconsin’s Sacrificial Cows

06/21/00

Hope may spring again for the dairy farmers of Wisconsin in 2001, but it will still have to clear an obstruction the size of Trent Lott. The farmers might consider raising pigs if the Congress didn’t already have a lock on swine.

Gregory Frost

 



What’s God got to do with it?

RE: “Pro Life, No Choice

06/20/00

I don’t think that hospitals have the right to deny services to anyone on religious grounds. If it is the only hospital in the area, it should provide the same services that non-religiously affiliated hospitals do.

Bonnie L. Revak

 



Fresh milk

RE: “Wisconsin’s Sacrificial Cows

06/20/00

The difficulty that Susan Ruland of the International Dairy Foods Association has with the question, “Do you subsidize the local hardware store or let the Wal-Mart move in?” is indicative of the destructive national mindset regarding family farms. Letting the Wal-Mart in, metaphorically, helps transform the foundation of the whole dairy industry from people, healthy animals, and healthy products, to a hormone-infested, roboticized factory farm production.

Like so many policies, the Eau Claire pricing system has solved the problem it set out to fix, but it lingers to replace the old problems with new ones. It is outdated, unfair, and it is destroying a vital healthy resource. It has me hoping food really does grow on supermarket shelves.

Carrie May Poniewaz
Washington, DC

 



Cash Cows

RE: “Wisconsin’s Sacrificial Cows

06/19/00

Small farms are, like small businesses, perferable because it’s easier for local economies to produce what the local geography is best suited for. The dairy farms outside of Wisconsin are not going to provide the consumer with a better product so much as provide the producer with higher profit margins. I think that issues such as this help make clear that our form of capitalism is based solely on profit, not on making better products.

Jon Jacobs

 



I was treated like a junkie

RE: “Fetal Abuse

06/19/00

I’m glad you are writing about the injustices against our children, which is precisely what this story is about. I was tested for drugs without my consent when I was pregnant and treated like a drug addict for having THC in my system. I had used the drug at a party before I knew I was pregnant. There was nothing wrong with my child, and there still isn’t. Thanks for making this issue more public.

Kerri Gavin



They’ve paid their dues

RE: “Pin Stripes or Prison Stripes

06/19/00

There’s an old saying, “You’ve paid your debt to society.” If a person has paid his/her debt to society, that person has every right to be reinstated into society. The prison term is supposed to be the punishment, not the rest of their life. In theory, they should have learned their lesson. The white-collar criminals usually are well educated, and they should know better — that’s why the punishment for white-collar crime should be harder.

David E. Dinwiddie