- The Washington Times - Monday, May 21, 2007

Hillary Clinton, don’t disparage Mother Teresa

In the article, “Abortion and psychology” (Commentary, Friday) Warren Throckmorton rightly asserts: “The Supreme Court’s recent decision banning partial-birth abortion has renewed public interest in abortion politics and policy.”

He is to be commended for making the voting public aware of a study by an intellectually honest, pro-choice researcher, David Fergusson, in which he states “abortion is associated with depression and other negative mental-health consequences” — a direct contradiction of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) position that the rise of psychological harm as a consequence of abortion is low.

Is it not indeed a coincidence that the APA — an organization historically allied with pro-choice advocates — has now suddenly convened a task force called Task Force for Mental Health and Abortion to conduct what it calls “an updated review of the published scientific literature on the potential impact of abortion on women’s mental health”; and, more importantly, that the APA findings will be released during the presidential election year of 2008 with predictable results?

Furthermore, it certainly is not merely coincidence that the Hillary Clinton for President campaign has released an ad showing a video of Mother Teresa standing beside then-first lady Hillary Clinton and daughter Chelsea, no doubt intended to pander to Catholic voters and soften Mrs. Clinton’s strident, hardline support of abortion on demand.

The revelation shown on this ad in a CNSNews.com article Friday, “Catholics to Hillary: Stop Using Mother Teresa in Ad” has outraged so many Catholics that there is now a call for action against this latest political ploy by the Clintons.

Joseph Cella, president of FIDELIS, a Catholic advocacy group established to help elect pro-life, pro-family and pro-religious liberty candidates to public office, has written a letter to the head of the Missionaries of Charity, urging her to ask the Clinton campaign to “cease and desist in its unauthorized use of Mother’s image.”

And, in a news release, he also urges the campaign to remove the image of Mother Teresa from the video narrated by Bill Clinton, which is being sent to supporters and donors. “It is wholly inappropriate, disrespectful and disturbing that Hillary Clinton is using an image of Blessed Mother Teresa as a political tool, especially [considering] their radically different views on abortion,” he says.

He noted that Mother Teresa fought to protect unborn children, while Mrs. Clinton “staunchly supports abortion on demand in all nine months of pregnancy, including partial-birth abortion and taxpayer funding of abortion.”

In stark contrast to Mrs. Clinton’s views, Mother Teresa abhorred abortion policies, stating in a letter to the Beijing Conference that, “Motherhood is the gift of God to women … Yet we can destroy this gift of motherhood, especially by the evil of abortion.”

Nothing could be clearer than the cavernous gap there is between Mrs. Clinton and the frail little woman we affectionately call, simply, “Mother”; and any attempt by an unscrupulous politician to use our blessed Mother’s image for political gain will surely fail.

CARIN SALA

Washington

The problems with ‘free’ rides

A few challenges to Bob Porterfield’s screed “Paying passengers give private jets ‘a free ride’ ” are necessary (Page 1, Sunday). It is pretty much a restatement of the airline view of the Federal Aviation Administration budget and, based entirely on what I have observed of the airlines’ ability to manage their businesses — things like avoiding bankruptcy, comfortable seating, courteous personnel and reliable baggage handling — they have not earned the right to our unquestioning acceptance of their views.

Air traffic control costs: The air traffic control system is sized to meet peak airline demands from “rush hour” arrivals and departures and widespread bad weather. Its costs are driven by this size.

It must, however, operate 24/7 and so has a lot of unused capability. General aviation (smaller, private planes) uses some of that capacity. Assigning a “fair share” of cost is driven by how you keep the books and I must question using an industry perpetually requiring bankruptcy protection as the accountant.

Small, urban airports: Small airports in nearby towns like those in Frederick, Md., Gaithersburg and Leesburg, Va., provide a critical service by “luring traffic” from major facilities like Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport and Baltimore- Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport. This helps meet our region’s overall transportation needs.

Flight instruction: Our nation needs pilots. Pilots have to be trained. Most pilots learn to fly and hone their skills at small airports flying small planes. The long-term health of air transportation requires that this process be supported as well.

Money spent foolishly: The $230 million computerized baggage-handling system for the airlines at the “new” Denver airport. Never worked. Abandoned. ‘Nuff said.

Rural airports: Small towns need transportation, too. Their airports, propeller-driven airplanes, and the small jets of feeder airlines (with taxpaying passengers) provide transportation for medical care, public safety, and personal and business travel that is just as important to those towns as Reagan Airport is to Washington and are as worthy of support as Reagan (with its latest proposed traffic increases) is. The airport has to be there, and able to receive them, before the airplanes can come.

Hidden costs: Please note that the demands for new fees never include the cost of collecting that money. The “pay for service” concept is an expansion in the federal bureaucracy.

BARNEY F. GORIN

Vice president

GoVentures Inc.

Gaithersburg

To tell the truth

The Washington Times reported Friday that the chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, Saul Anuzis, will disseminate a petition attempting to “bar Ron Paul from future Republican presidential debates because of remarks the congressman from Texas made that suggested the September 11 attacks were the fault of U.S. foreign policy” (“A pall on Paul,” Inside Politics, Friday). During the Republican candidates’ debate, Mr. Paul had the following provocative words to say: “Have you ever read about the reasons they attacked us? They attack us because we’ve been over there. We’ve been bombing Iraq for 10 years.”

Mr. Anuzis referred to Mr. Paul’s comments as “off the wall and out of whack” and said Mr. Paul “is a distraction in the Republican primary, and he does not represent the base, and he does not represent the party.” Former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, a GOP spokesman, contributed to the criticism by implying that Mr. Paul should not be allowed in future debates. It is most appalling that the Republican elite wish to exclude Mr. Paul from participating in future debates because of dissension over foreign policy. What is the Republican base, and what does it stand for? There appears to be a wide spectrum of beliefs regarding critical issues such as amnesty for illegal aliens, abortion and homosexual rights.

Of the 10 Republican candidates at the debate, Mr. Paul is the only one who has consistently opposed the Bush administration’s failing war in Iraq. I believe his convictions are most commendable. Many polls indicate that a majority of the American people would view unfavorably the current handling of the war in Iraq. Mr. Paul’s views mirror those of a traditional conservative regarding a constitutional interpretation of American foreign policy, i.e.: America is a republic, not an empire. The Republican Party is not unlike the Democratic Party in abandoning the U.S. Constitution, to the detriment of the American people. If Mr. Anuzis and others have their way, Mr. Paul also will face abandonment from his constituents because he speaks the intolerable truth that is overtly too polarizing for his fellow Republicans.

MATTHEW PASALIC

Catonsville, Md.

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