To the Editor:
I am writing in reference to the article entitled, “Reproductive health is not a social issue” by Connie Schultz (The Mountain Eagle, Nov. 25, page 3).
According to the Webster’s Dictionary, the word ‘social’ means: (1) offering material aid, counseling services, group recreational activities, etc., to those who need it; of or engaged in welfare work (a social worker or agency), (2) getting along well with others; sociable and (3) or having to do with human beings living together as a group in a situation in which their dealings with one another affect their common welfare (social consciousness, social problems).
Miss Schultz: You stated, “Language matters, so let’s be clear: Women’s reproductive health is not a social issue.” You also stated, “attempting to limit women’s access to legal and safe abortions? Not even remotely a social issue.”
On this issue, I would have to disagree.
In my opinion, from my interpretation of the word ‘social’ offering material aid or counseling services is a social issue. While religious leaders and politicians voice their opinions on abortion, women’s reproductive health has long been a social issue. Controversy among the pro-abortionists and anti-abortionists has long been made a social issue (an issue debated for many years).
Again, in my opinion, the abortion issue has been a ‘social issue’ since the ’70s (when abortion became legalized in the United States). Religious leaders, politicians, anti-abortionists, pro-abortionists, etc., have made it so.
Miss Schultz: In your article you stated that, “as we debate the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, which is the latest effort in Congress to prohibit insurance coverage for abortions . . .” you are essentially saying yourself that it is a social issue since Congress (a part of society), is to deal with the amendment.
In my opinion, society has made women’s reproductive health a social issue, whether we agree with society or not. Speaking on the issue of women’s reproductive health, the subject of abortion has affected society (from the perspective of population growth alone, it is a social issue). Speaking of the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, women’s reproductive health is a social issue in that it would prohibit insurance coverage for abortion.
Since early on, anti-abortionists have picketed abortion clinics (another instance in which society has made abortion a social issue, also, all of the counseling services for those women deciding on whether or not to have an abortion has made it a social issue).
In conclusion, since society has long been affected through controversy alone, women’s reproductive health has been made a social issue.
RITA GOODMAN McRoberts