Darkness Creeps In

This is an abomination and a blood-red stain on our entire society:

The pregnant woman showed up at the medical center in flip-flops and in tears, after walking there to save bus fare.
Her boyfriend had lost his job, she told her doctor in Oakland, Calif., and now — fearing harder times for her family — she wanted to abort what would have been her fourth child.
“This was a desired pregnancy — she’d been getting prenatal care — but they re-evaluated expenses and decided not to continue,” said Dr. Pratima Gupta. “When I was doing the options counseling, she interrupted me halfway through, crying, and said, `Dr. Gupta, I just walked here for an hour. I’m sure of my decision.'” …
Planned Parenthood of Illinois clinics performed an all-time high number of abortions in January, many of them motivated by the women’s economic worries, said CEO Steve Trombley, who declined to give exact numbers. Abortions at Planned Parenthood’s St. Louis-area clinics were up nearly 7 percent in the second half of 2008 from a year earlier — ending a stretch in which the numbers were dwindling.
Planned Parenthood said it has no up-to-date national abortion figures, nor do other private or government agencies. However, Stephanie Poggi of the National Network of Abortion Funds, which helps women in need pay for abortions, said calls to the network’s national helpline have nearly quadrupled from a year ago.

I daresay that a majority of the citizens of the United States could muster some outrage at an epidemic of perfectly healthy dogs’ being put down because the owners who’ve raised them have decided that their existence is more than the household budget can bear, and yet here we have parents killing the offspring whom they purposely conceived.
Evil has gained a terrible sway in our society if we express no horror at the depths to which we’ve sunk.

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12 years ago

I’m just as shocked and stunned as you are.
So let’s do something to alleviate the economic conditions that put women in the position where they even have to consider such a horrible choice.

Justin Katz
12 years ago

I’m in. First step: get the government to stop propping up failing businesses and creating the “third way” economic environment that currently joins the speed, power, and coldness of capitalism with socialism’s protection of the powerful.

12 years ago

… and mandating bad loan practices to private banks which creates an enormous, artificial boom followed by a worldwide economic collapse.

12 years ago

Single payer system . Single payer system. A system which provides for a single payer. A single payer system. That is the solution, otherwise, Justin, you sound like the walrus in Through the Looking Glass, to wit:
“I weep for you,” the Walrus said:
“I deeply sympathize.”
With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size,
Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.
and the result was:
“O Oysters,” said the Carpenter,
“You’ve had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again?’
But answer came there none–
And this was scarcely odd, because
They’d eaten every one.

12 years ago

In my view, no economic policy or health care system would eliminate this scenario from occurring. Free people have financial issues that come up under both capitalism and socialism and everything in between. People make choices and have responsibilities regardless of whether there is a single payer system or not.
There is no evidence that this scenario occurs less under more socialistic or single payer health systems. In my view, there is not logical argument to support it either unless one believes that under socialism everyone gets to do whatever they want (total freedom) and the government covers the expenses (no personal responsibility). Of course history shows that this nirvana cannot exist.
Despite the hand-wringing that this was caused and therefore could have been avoided by economic or political changes, I agree with Justin that if this were a domestic animal, there would likely be more outrage (not to mention press) at this tragedy than there is due to the ‘political’ issue involved.
I cannot fathom how this is rationalized weighed against protecting the environment (i.e.: drilling for oil). The search for economic excuses to support tragic choices such as this is indeed another depth the culture has sunk to.

12 years ago

Single payer system . Single payer system. A system which provides for a single payer. A single payer system.
Canada has a single-payer system. There’s also 3 MRI machines in the whole country, because it’s the government that has to pay for them.
There’s more than that just in Providence. We don’t have a single-payer system.
I’ll keep what we’ve got, thanks anway.

Justin Katz
12 years ago

Your comment relates to a comment that I was going to make following up on msteven’s: In the modern day, a socialist system might conceivably force women to have abortions. How much prenatal care equates to a new MRI machine?

12 years ago

Forced abortions are just as bad as taking away a woman’s right to choose. After all, women choose to have babies, too.

12 years ago

What an unspeakable fallout of economic crisis and the human condition, in general. As you may recall, the play, “A Raisin in the Sun,” presents the main character with the same decision, but it is averted when she realizes that human life must trump the economic realities we find ourselves in if we are to call ourselves moral beings, no matter the consequences. I am not cold and indifferent to the plight of this woman, but no social program will put a stop to poverty entirely, and woman will find themselves in these situations in all times, but the decision is a moral one, not economic or social.
I also agree that in this topsy-turvey world we live in, the welfare of pets takes precedence over the rights of the unborn in the minds of some very cloudy-minded people. Consider the addle-brained animal rights organizations (PETA and HSUS) who want to give equal rights to the four-legged, and go so far as to call them “non-human companions.” Please…I have a dog that I love dearly, but does she exist on the same moral plane as an unborn child? I think not.

Ken M
Ken M
12 years ago

“Canada has a single-payer system. There’s also 3 MRI machines in the whole country, because it’s the government that has to pay for them.”
Where do you come up with this nonsense?!?!
I lived in Canada – and worked in the health care system there – for five years (until moving back to the US for family reasons about five years ago).
There were at least a half dozen MRI units in Toronto alone! Most of the surrounding suburbs have them as well. Lack of technology is not the true problem there. It’s lack of ACCESS to technology that leads to the stories of woe that you hear in the media.
ACCESS is a real problem due to to geography of Canada. When 90% of your population lives in 10% of your land area (within 100 miles of the US border – where the climate is less frigid), that other 10% of the population isn’t going to be that geographically close to the latest expensive technology. They also aren’t going to have a Super WalMart, a McDonald’s, or a cinema megaplex either.
My point is that private healthcare would not make it more feasible to have MRI units in the Arctic Circle. It would make it LESS feasible.
My wife grew up in Hawaii, and they have the same healthcare access issues on the outer islands (i.e. anywhere other than Oahu and Maui). There simply isn’t the population density to support the technology – or even anything other than GPs (no specialist care available on-island). If you need a CT scan, MRI, or even to see an oncologist, you have to get on a plane to Oahu.
At least in Canada, these trips are government-funded, including hotel, airfare, and accompanying family member if needed by the patient.

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