Show respect for choice


To the Editor:

With women’s reproductive healthcare prominently in the news, the executive committee would like to ensure our community knows about the Island clinic. Operated on State Road by Health Imperatives, the family planning clinic continues to offer reproductive healthcare to anyone needing the services. Birth control, STI, HIV, and cancer screenings, Pap smears, and annual exams are available by appointment. Although the clinic doesn’t offer abortions or vasectomies, the Friends of Family Planning will reimburse expenses to the men and women who have to travel off-Island for these procedures. For details about us or services, please go to our website or Facebook page, or call the clinic.

Currently we are planning a few educational/community events. The first is a Jazz Brunch at the Ritz on Sunday, June 9, from 10 am to 2 pm. All proceeds will go directly to help Islanders. Please join us.

While being respectful of everyone’s right to their own opinion, and knowing abortion evokes strong feelings, we unequivocally believe in and support choice. A woman’s reproductive freedom is the cornerstone of all her freedom. The circumstances surrounding abortion should not matter. The choice is the woman’s, and the right to that choice has been protected by laws in the commonwealth of Massachusetts for many decades.

Our hope is that as fellow inhabitants of this Island, we can be respectful of and compassionate toward each other.


For the executive board of FOFP,
Susan Desmarais, Oak Bluffs
Regan Goldstein, Tisbury
Roger Maxfield, Edgartown
Sarah Monast, Edgartown
Nili Morgan, Tisbury
Terre D. Young, West Tisbury


  1. Abortion is not health care – it is a procedure designed to end innocent human life and poses significant health and safety threats to women. There’s a reason more than 300 pro-life laws have passed at the state level in the last decade: Americans are expressing their clear support for pro-life measures. When Roe Wade was passed 45 years ago we didnt have the science that we have now to detect fetal heart beat and to see babies in the womb. Increasingly people are uneasy especially at later terms because of what they have learned. Yes highly emotional issue and 20 years ago it was supposed to be ”safe legal and rare” but now it seems the mantra is ”anytime, anywhere, my body.”

    • So your position is women do not have full right rights as humans. Banning abortions are a way for males to control a women.

      • Not talking about rights New Englander. Talking about the current mood. Actually statistics show more women are anti abortion than men and that more women are pro life than men. Your theory is wrong.

        • Current mood to determine civil rights, like justifying killing someone for driving while black.

          So current mood. Let’s use this poll: 69 percent of Americans support gun control. You want to take away a woman’s access to abortion, something that affects her health and well-being. Let’s protect everyone, whether they want that protection or not. Take away all firearms because those can and often have been used to kill people in malls and movie theaters, and to murder children in schools. That so-called Constitutional right to bear arms infringes the guarantee for everyone else to live. If gun owners won’t be responsible, we have to do it for them.

    • Andrew– abortion only poses health risks if performed under unsanitary conditions by untrained individuals. The reason so many anti choice laws are being introduced is because state legislatures are pandering to a radical base. The sane center is still opposed to anti choice laws by significant margins.
      And now you are rolling out “science” to justify anti choice laws ?
      You are conflating very rare third trimester abortions with radical laws that are trying to ban a pregnancy termination before most women even know they are pregnant. Let’s be clear, you will not see the pro choice side saying ”anytime, anywhere, my body” except of course from the radical right claiming that is what the left says, but you will find the pro life side saying “never.” —- not rape not incest, not if the baby will die after intense suffering after 2 days, not to protect the health of the mother.
      We could have a more reasonable discussion if the right wing propaganda machine didn’t twist the narrative quite so much.
      And have you noticed the same party that is pushing to ban abortion is also pushing to cut funding for health insurance, pre natal care, wic and food stamp programs, child care subsidies, wellness visits for infants and head start programs ,to name a few essential programs.

      • Don, every medical procedure involves some risk of infection or complications, even when performed in the most sanitary and safe environment. The risk increases greatly when medical procedures are performed in an unsafe or illegal circumstances—which is what will happen to many more women if women cannot obtain legal abortions.
        Andrew, a woman who is against abortion is not forced to have one, so I don’t understand your argument. You make it sound like abortion is forced on women who don’t want them. If you are personally against abortion, don’t have one. It’s your choice. Do we not all have a right to choose what happens to our body? My feeling is that men who feel so strongly about not allowing a woman a right to choose is that they, the men, should undergo their own little medical procedure in order to prevent any female partner from having to make such a painfully difficult choice. Seems to me that’s the chivalrous thing to do. If only women were completely in charge and entitled to control what a man does with his body, the way certain men (and some women) entitle themselves to dictate a choice for other women.

        • So simplistic Jackie to say if you dont want one dont have one.( if you dont like slavery dont own a slave) This is about what many believe is a human life and the issue is not constrained to just a womans body. Increasingly people are protesting this gruesome practice and they are free to choose a protest are they not. You clearly understand my argument but you are so invested in this ”choice” conceit that you arent willing to show some flexibility. I am for choice on guns but I dont want a gatling gun. Can you be for choice on abortion but consider it a bit much when its done anytime for any reason.? No. Abortion is not forced on women but a lot of people dont think its a good idea.

          • Andrew: “It is essential to woman’s equality with man that she be the decisionmaker, that her choice be controlling…If you impose restraints that impede her choice, you are disadvantaging her because of her sex.” ~RBG
            Hope that’s not too simplistic.

          • Most so called “prolifers” turn a blind eye to the harsh realities facing women who must have this procedure. They also turn a blind eye to the FACT that abortions are at record lows since RoevWade and continue to fall, due almost entirely to liberal policies of sex education and contraception.

            The abortion issue is simply a “get out the vote” strategy to get the tools of the GOP electorate in line.

  2. ok dondondon. lets make a deal. I will say ”except in cases of rape or incest” If your side says ”never in third trimester” You wont make that deal and neither will your leftist side. No one is pandering. Slowly but surely people are realizing something is wrong with abortion on demand. They see the baby in the womb, they see it squirm at the needle and they hear its heartbeat at early stages. This will be remembered in history as a huge tragedy one day. The assault on black babies in the womb is hugely disproportionate and the left is silent.

    • So if it’s discovered during the third trimester there’s a problem with the fetus and the mother won’t survive without an abortion, the family gets the full support of anti-abortion groups and their paid-for legislators to sue them for wrongful death.

      Or, don’t control the woman’s personal life.

    • andrew– you think I would agree to a position of “never ” for third trimester termination ?
      Mom’s gonna die ? too bad
      Baby will be born with spine outside of body, suffer immense pain and cost hundreds of thousands of dollars
      in order to “live” for a day or 2 — too bad
      You think I would agree to that ? Sorry, I have some sense of morality.

      • dondondon. federal law allows abortion up until birth. 8 states plus DC allow abortion after 21 weeks. Those abortions represent 8300 babies and they arent all deformed or Momma dying.

        • Andrew– provide some proof– of your statistics– please be advised, i already have done the research– your “8300 babies” statistic is false– i will not accuse you of lying, but you don’t have to spend very much time checking your statement to conclude it is false.

          • 2015 stats show 1.3 percent of all abortions that year were after 21 months. Claiming it is false is not a statistic dondondon.

  3. How silly is it that Republicans cling to mythologies in order to justify implementing invasive and impersonal government regulations of the Woman’s body under the guise of caring about the sanctity of life, but we never heard a single peep out of anyone of them when upward of a million innocent men, women, and children were murdered due to our unjust invasion of Iraq, a war based entirely on lies.

    Republicans only care about life from conception to birth. Hypocrites, every last one of them.

    • Vanadium this is pure dissimulation on your part. If you are concerned about one million innocent lives in Iraq you should be concerned about innocent lives in the womb. The key question you will not confront is ”is it killing or not?” why not just say,”yes it is killing but its ok because it is choice””

      • Andrew, you just trivialized civilian deaths in Iraq? If you are concerned about abortions, you should be concerned about civilian lives in Iraq. So let’s tweak your options back at you. Were civilian deaths in Iraq killing or not? Or was that killing but it’s okay because it was by choice? Is it true, Republicans care about life only from conception to birth?

  4. Jackie you keep mentioning CHOICE. Lets suppose abortion is for sex selection which is most always selecting out females. You would then have a hissy fit and you know it. So would all the other progressives on this post.

    • You lose every point so your gambit becomes abortion is for gender selection? Stay on topic, Andrew.

      • newenglander please read carefully. I said what if abortion was for sex selection? Would you have a problem if we only aborted females? You constantly make illogical juxtapositions and have for years.

        • You are wandering, likely you’ve a defense tailored for that particular circumstance and will attempt to apply it across the board. Or you could admit you want to control lives of others and what happens to them after is not important to you.

  5. Andrew, I don’t keep mentioning choice. I last quoted Ruth Bader Ginsburg who indeed speaks about choice and why it is important.

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