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Defunding Planned Parenthood is attack on woman's right to choose

To The Daily Sun,

With hidden camera equipment, anti-abortion activists have surreptitiously recorded hours of video tape with physicians at Planned Parenthood. The group went on to claim that edited video shows that PP sells the body parts of aborted fetuses, a serious felony throughout the United States. As a former news broadcaster, who has watched the video, I can testify that the tape does not demonstrate any wrongdoing, even though it was selectively edited.

Actually, current law specifically states that women who have abortions can choose to donate fetal tissue for research, while providers like PP and hospitals can be reimbursed for costs involved in the process, but cannot profit from the donation.

Despite these facts, Republicans have latched on to the controversy with gusto, calling for the complete defunding of Planned Parenthood. Many have said they would support a government shutdown, if PP is funded in September. Senator Ted Cruz, a radical, anti-abortion proponent, has so distorted the truth that he recently called for the defunding of PP for "profiting off the bodies they have stolen."

Speaking on the campaign trail, Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton said, "It's really an attack on a women's right to choose, to make the most personal, difficult decisions that any woman would face, based on her faith, and the medical advice she's given. I'm hoping that this situation will not further undermine the very important services that Planned Parenthood provides across our country."

Apparently, a vast majority of the people here in New Hampshire agree with Ms. Clinton in a new poll. Seventy-five percent of Republicans, Democrats and Independents in our state have said they do not want the Republicans to shut down the government over Planned Parenthood and 65 percent say the federal government should continue to fund PP.

Nick Vazzana

Sandwich

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Almost 3X as many people die from auto accidents as gun homicides

To The Daily Sun,

This is in response to Johan Anderson's letter in the Aug. 13 edition of The Sun:

That you believe repealing the Second Amendment will magically reduce the number of gun deaths proves to me that you have little, if any understanding of either who actually perpetrates a majority of the gun-related deaths in the U.S. or the reasoning behind the Second Amendment.

First, if you bothered to look at the crime statistics, something easily found at the U.S. Department of Justice website, you would see that very few gun deaths are attributable to law-abiding citizens owning/carrying/using guns. Of those who do, most were committed during an act of self-defense. Most of those killing other people with guns are criminals, people who already have little or no regard for the law. You'd find that the guns they used are either already illegal to own (fully-automatic weapons, i.e. machine guns), were stolen, or smuggled in to the U.S.

Were gun ownership banned tomorrow and law-abiding citizens were to voluntarily give up their guns, how many homicides would be prevented? The answer: very few. The criminals wouldn't give up their guns. What you would have is a populace no longer able to protect itself and a criminal element give free rein because they know no one other than their fellow criminals will be armed. The homicide rate would skyrocket ... but you'd feel better because there are fewer guns out there.

Second, if you took a closer look at the crime statistics you'd find that states which have the least restrictive gun laws also have the lowest rates of violent crime, including murder. How do you reconcile your suggestion that doing away with the right for the people to own and bear arms will reduce gun deaths when the statistics say just the opposite? Is your suggestion based upon emotion rather than logic and cold hard facts?

Third, if you look at the crime statistics over the past four decades, you'd see the overall violent crime rate has been declining. If you look at the number of gun deaths, not including suicides, in 2013 (the most recent I could find), there were 11,208 gun deaths in the U.S. How many traffic fatalities were there in that same year? 32,719.

Almost three times as many people die from traffic accidents as die from gun homicides. Maybe we should ban cars and trucks because they kill a lot of people. I will admit that the number of suicides committed with a gun that same year were quite high, about 21,175. But if you ask anyone familiar with the psychology of suicide, you'd find that most of the people who killed themselves with a gun would have used other means to do so if guns weren't available.

Fourth, the Second Amendment was put into place by the framers of the Constitution for a good reason: To allow the people to defend themselves against miscreants, and more specifically, against a tyrannical government should ours devolve into such a state. If you think that can never happen, then you have ignored the evidence of history that proves otherwise. The framers knew this was a possibility and made sure we would have the means to defend ourselves against such tyranny.

I will not abridge your right to not own or carry a gun. But don't even think of abridging my right to own or carry mine.

Dale Channing Eddy

Gilford

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