My letter is in response to the letter titled “Exclude Abortion Coverage” [Aug. 6, 2009], and I do not agree with any of it. As a mother, grandmother of six, and great-grandmother of one, I have never accepted the premise or assumption that anyone has the right to tell me, my daughters, or any female what they are allowed to do with their bodies, who to love, and what they are to do if they become pregnant from incest, rape, or chronic physical and mental abuse.
I have questions for you as a female. I am a female and at my advanced age I could still become pregnant from rape… are you going to force me to have a baby? If so, are you going to take the responsibility of adopting it, raising it, taking care of its disabilities? Are you going to pay the hospital and doctor bills? The bills for day care, since as a single parent, I would have to work to pay for its raising?
As for paying taxes for legal medical procedures, birth control medication, the morning after pill, only 20 percent of any taxes have ever been allocated—except during the Bush Administrations where “abstinence only was the only way” to prevent pregnancy programs were the only programs that received government support. And we all know that DOES NOT prevent pregnancy! Women and girls need accurate medical counseling about sex, birth control, what methods really do prevent pregnancy, and what to do if they become pregnant by force or if they are not capable or able to carry, deliver, and raise a baby. The numbers of abortions actually performed in this country is only a tiny fraction of the numbers you and your organizations quote.
A woman or young girl has a right to choose what she is to do, if she finds herself with an unplanned pregnancy. She also has a right to privacy. These basic human rights are being violated by those of you who insist that only you can judge her and force her to carry a fetus and deliver it. Then no one hears from you again, period.
Most professional women’s clinics are supported by donations from compassionate, caring, and humanitarian folks, not by the government. I have been a recipient of these OB/GYN services for years. I totally disagree with your statement that “abortion is not essential health care.” What if your daughter were raped? What if your friend had been repeatedly raping his daughter? What if a fetus was found to have no brain matter? So disabled it could not survive? Yes, abortion should remain legal, and you and your group should no longer be allowed to demand that women follow your rules. It is their bodies and their lives that are at stake. And I thank the gods for those brave, caring medical professionals who risk their lives every day to care for all who come to them for advice, counseling, and legitimate, legal medical services.
M. L. Wilson