First, thank you to Cheryl Arnold for caring enough to express her thoughts in response to my letter on abortion. I think healthy discussion is always good. And although this letter won’t show it, I do agree with some of what she wrote.
I tried to convey in my original letter that this issue is a thorny one — “there are no easy answers here.” But I probably need to state more clearly that I agree that what makes this issue so difficult is that one must consider both the mother’s future as well as that of the unborn child’s. For me and others, even after that consideration, we conclude that the decision to abort or not should be the woman’s and not their state’s. I know that others will conclude differently. I still think that, at the very least, 10-year-old rape victims and women whose health/life are at risk should not have to travel to another state to get an abortion.
My contention that more voters agree with the above two positions than do not is, admittedly, based on limited evidence — some national and state polls and the vote in Kansas. Kansas may or may not be a good indicator of where the electorate is for most states. But it is the evidence we have. In some other states, these decisions are being made by a small number of state legislators, many of whom represent ‘safe’ districts, gerrymandered out of contention, which I would argue does not always reflect the overall constituency of that state. I think that is a serious problem.
The vote in Kansas appears to shed light on another of Cheryl Arnold’s comments. According to a Pew survey in 2014, 76 percent of Kansans identify as Christians. Since only 41 percent voted “no,” you’d have to conclude that at least some Kansas Christians were not sensational but also not silent in voting to uphold that state’s constitutional right to an abortion.
Paul Mack, Columbus