As a guiding principle, the Hippocratic Oath—"first do no harm"—is a reasonable one for the health-care reform bills Congress is considering. Financial concerns about an increased government role in health care are legitimate, but few argue that all Americans should have access to essential health care.
Abortion, however, isn't essential health care—it is the choice to end one human life for the convenience of another. You may or may not agree that abortion should remain legal. What seems inarguable is that, in a nation so divided on the issue, that taxpayer dollars be used to pay for the procedure, or that federally approved health plans require coverage for abortion. Yet unless Congress specifically excludes abortion from the health-care reform bill, it will be covered.
If your readers are as concerned by that prospect as I am, they should contact their U.S. representative and U.S. senators and insist that abortion be excluded from health-care reform. I belong to a non-partisan grassroots organization called the Center for Moral Clarity, which has online resources to easily accomplish this. I urge your readers to join me in raising our voices to make sure we do not become complicit in funding abortions under the guise of health-care reform.
Roger van Dyk Knoxville