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On abortion, how about this? I don’t want to be pregnant | Letters
Here’s what readers are saying in Sunday’s letters to the editor.
Abortion rights advocates and anti-abortion protesters demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court on Dec. 1, 2021.
Abortion rights advocates and anti-abortion protesters demonstrate in front of the Supreme Court on Dec. 1, 2021.
Published Jan. 16

I don’t want to be pregnant

Meet the anti-abortion movement’s newest face | Jan. 12

This story makes me absolutely furious. The arrogance of taking the position of knowing what will and won’t empower another individual with completely different circumstances is outrageous. It has been pointed out over and over: Many women simply don’t have the resources to carry a forced pregnancy to term, much less raise a child. But how about this? I don’t want to be pregnant. I don’t want to have a baby. I don’t want to give birth. I’m reminded of being told as a teenage girl how wrong I was to think I didn’t want children, and how I would certainly change my mind. I didn’t. Even those with the means and physical ability to give birth and raise a child should not be forced into doing so, regardless of their circumstances. Does a man plan to have a child every single time he has sex with a woman? No birth control method is infallible. Abortion bans take the empowerment of choice and autonomy away. I will feel empowered when abortion is safe and available to all.

Vivienne Handy, Wimauma

My choice, in writing

To end his wife’s suffering, he shot her | Jan. 12

Kudos to Times staff writer Lane DeGregory for highlighting how gut wrenching it can be to deal with someone who suffers from Alzheimer’s and doesn’t wish to live what could be many years in that condition. Dementia quickly steals autonomy. It is so important that we state our wishes in writing (and video) while still mentally competent to do so. We also need to discuss our priorities as concisely as possible early on with family members, including where we draw the line for what we deem quality of life. I have signed a “compassion and choices” form that specifically states what therapies I do or don’t want should I no longer be able to make decisions for myself and have no chance of regaining mental function. Some might decide to not be fed or given fluids and choose VSED (voluntarily stopping eating and drinking). When food and water is withheld, organs gradually shut down and life ends within 10-14 days. To call this starvation is inaccurate and confusing, as cravings for food subside after a few days and thirst can be lessened by simple means. Most people using VSED report feeling peaceful as they slowly drift off. My family understands that this will be my choice should I be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. I am confident this would make a difficult situation easier for them, as well as for me.

Anne Burnham, Palm Harbor

Voting rights and wrongs

Biden challenges Senate on voting rights passage: ‘Tired of being quiet!’ | Jan. 11

It is beyond belief that the Democrats are pushing so hard to get the “voting rights” bill through Congress that would weaken photo ID, do away with proper checks on mail-in ballots and allow same-day registration and voting. All of this is being done because they claim voting is suppressed for minority Americans. This is ludicrous, particularly since the vast majority of Americans want photo ID. Photo identification is used everywhere: to get on an airplane, to see a doctor, to apply for a mortgage, to purchase a weapon and to cash checks. Even the progressive liberal Democrats who are pushing this bill must know down deep in their hearts that it is wrong.

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Charles E. Salzmann, New Port Richey

It already exists

‘We were right’ to reopen | Jan. 12

House Speaker Chris Sprowls does not need to create a civics curriculum for any grade level. That program has existed since the 1990s from the Center for Civic Ed based in Calabasas, Calif. It is called “We the People: the Citizen and the Constitution,” and curriculum is designed for grades 3-12. Materials and resources are provided that have been created and based on factual information and tested classroom lessons across all 50 states. The final activity is a group project with every student participating in a mock congressional hearing based on a series of questions that relate back to the Constitution. I was a district, state and national trainer for this teacher-friendly program from 1999 until my retirement in 2017. It is student-centered around becoming an informed, productive citizen. A set of 30 student resource books and a teacher’s guide is about $533 for the elementary edition. The research is easy — civiced.org. Why reinvent the wheel? It’s been in the national profile since 1965 and follows national civics standards. Look it up.

Carol Hess, Hudson

Like a business

Tampa Bay business leaders support Rays split season Montreal plan | Jan. 8

You only need to ask one simple question to figure out if building the Tampa Bay Rays a new baseball stadium is a worthwhile investment: Why can’t the Rays find private investors willing to fork out the capital to build it, just like any other business would? We know the answer. Beyond basic infrastructure, there’s no viable economic rationale for public subsidies going to build a stadium.

A. Boone, Tampa

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