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Reader's view: Pro-life lawmakers ignore the living who need help

In 1990, Terri Schiavo collapsed and fell into a coma and never regained consciousness. Her physician concluded she was in an "irreversible, persistent, vegetative state." Fifteen years later, her husband and caregivers agreed the time had come t...

In 1990, Terri Schiavo collapsed and fell into a coma and never regained consciousness. Her physician concluded she was in an "irreversible, persistent, vegetative state." Fifteen years later, her husband and caregivers agreed the time had come to stop forcing oxygen and nutrition into her body. Members of Congress who style themselves pro-life rushed to Washington during Holy Week to pass legislation to save her life. Eleven days later, she died.

Many of those pro-life legislators are still in Congress. What are they doing to save lives today?

The U.S. has the worst infant-mortality rate of any of the world's 34 leading industrialized nations. We do not provide health care for all our people. It is estimated that each year about 15,000 to 20,000 of our babies die of treatable conditions before their first birthday.

On Nov. 11, ABC News reported that 2,266 veterans died for lack of medical care during 2008. What a disgraceful neglect of veterans we should instead be seeking to honor.

So what are our pro-life legislators doing to save lives these days? Though our president has urged congressional action to ensure medical care for all Americans, their blithe response seems to be, "What's the hurry? We have plenty of time."

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Just how many of our children, veterans, and others must suffer and die while we wait for them?

James and Sylvia Sjolie

Duluth

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