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Who gets to decide if another person or fetus deserves life?

To The Daily Sun,

There has been some back and forth on the subject of abortion on these pages over the past few days. I am moved to put in my two cents.

The first thing I want to say is that people on the pro-choice side characterize those on the pro-life side as lacking compassion and understanding and having no regard for what women go through.
I don't see it that way. I think the pro-choicers are the ones lacking compassion and understanding. When I was a teenager in the late '60s and early '70s, I was all gung ho for the push for a more liberal and humanitarian society that was taking off then. It was the abortion issue that drove me away. The left said they cared about the underdog; the forgotten, the powerless, the disenfranchized. I was all in. Then I learned that part of this movement encompassed the idea of "abortion on demand." It didn't make sense to me. It seemed to go against everything they said they believed. It was unjust. The mother, unless she was raped, had a choice in getting pregnant. But the soon-to-be murdered baby, had no choice. How was that fair? They were trying to pose the woman as the one without power who needed our support, but clearly it was the baby who was powerless, not the woman.

One of the main arguments the pro-choicers made then was that since the fetus couldn't live outside the womb, it was a "parasite." But who gets to decide that if another person at a certain stage of life doesn't have the same capabilities they do, they can decree the other life has less value? Wasn't the whole "movement," as they called it then, about validating the person on the outside; the one with differences, the one in the minority, the one with less power? Who is more powerless than a fetus? And besides, who among us isn't a "parasite?" How long would any of us last if there was no more food or water or air? We are all dependent creatures. There is an almost Nazi-like coldness in this push to depersonalize the fetus in order to justify killing it.

Yesterday, a letter writer critized a previous letter writer who had written that the fetus has a desire to live, just as all living things do, even a spider that runs away at your approach because it wants to live. The writer questioned this and said that unless the fetus can tell us in sign language through an ultrasound that it wants to live, she wasn't buying it. But the desire to live is inherent in all living creatures. It's part of the life force. So it's self-evident that the fetus wants to live. To mock the fetus in a jesting way, demanding it express itself when we know it can't, reminded me of the stories I used to hear of the cruelty directed at American slaves on the auction block. Owners would expect them to smile and make a good presentation to enhance their saleability. To not only rip the heart and life out of a human being, but expect them to put on a show at that moment; to make light of their horror in order to accomodate the depraved desires of their tormentor, is evil beyond comprehension. In my soul, I felt her mockery of the helpless, hunted fetus to be on this level.

I hope John Demakowski keeps writing because I enjoy his letters. The other writer called him narrow minded and said he should stop writing because she doesn't agree with him. How ridiculous is that? I hope he keeps writing and I hope he keeps referencing the Bible, our instruction book for living. The other writer said he quotes the Good Book, but doesn't live it. Really? How does she know that?

I'll sum up with a little Bible quote of my own. When questioned by His disciples about what the signs of the end times would be, Our Lord said, 'Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many will wax cold." Matt 24:12
I think love waxes cold in the face of iniquity because you have to harden your heart to rationalize doing what you know is wrong. The Lord also said that God's law hangs on 2 commandments; to love God and love your neighbor. Matt 22: 37-40. So iniquity, by defintion, according to Jesus, is the negation of love. I guess there are people in this world who would have to be trapped in the womb themselves, scrambling to evade the suction machine before they could understand that abortion is not love.

Hillarie Goldstein


  • Written by Mike Mortensen
  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 342

Step back from assumptions and work for the greater good

To The Daily Sun,

Stereotypes. Assumptions. We all make them, and I am wary of their hazards.

Last weekend, about 20 people who have known each other almost 50 years were gathered for fun and reconnection. Ironically, we were talking about free speech and the necessity for us to learn even from those with whom we disagree, and to do so civilly and respectfully. Yet, since most of us were of a progressive, Democrat affiliation, yes, the conversation became more strident about how we fear for our country: The potential loss of health care, weakening of environmental laws, under-staffed State Department, rise of the alt-right, lack of support for public education, plight of the refugees and DACA youth, fear of inadvertent war with North Korea, etc., etc. So very much to worry about, from our point of view. But throughout this, we ourselves grew less civil about the president, and voiced some very negative assumptions about what might have motivated any who voted for him.

Then, one brave soul had the courage to admit she had voted for Trump — a woman who has a heart of gold, has worked with immigrants, has lived overseas, etc.

Yes, this gave us all pause. Who else in our very own families and communities are we writing off because of what we assume? And who is writing me off because I’ve had signs in my yard supporting Obama, Hassan or the local library?

For 18 years I worked in a high school whose staff had very differing political views, yet those did not keep us from collaborating to create the best for our students. I’ve now lived for 42 years in small town Gilmanton. Yes, we’ve had some notable controversies, but for the most part people serving on the School Board, Planning Board, or Board of Selectmen are not identified by party and truly try to solve problems for the good of our town.

Let’s try to step back from our assumptions, listen, and find out what connects us in our aspirations and concerns, and work together for the good of our towns, our state and our country.

Anne Onion


  • Written by Mike Mortensen
  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 321