H.R. 7

It has been very interesting, illuminating even, to talk to young Americans here in Siena.  A conversation today highlighted the fact that an American child born into poverty is very likely to remain there.

The poor kid doesn’t have a chance.  He (or she) will arrive in kindergarten many months behind his fellow five-year-olds because there are no books in his house, his parents can barely read, he lives on a diet of fast food and cereal (if he’s lucky) and he will likely lose several teeth before he becomes an adult.

I am not describing a stereotype here.  I am talking about kids and families that I have met.  I have talked to them at length.  I have been in their houses.  There was one in Beaver Dams which had a dirt floor. Apparently the previous occupants had kept chickens in the house.  (There is a happy ending to that story and I may well blog about it later).

Poverty is horrible.

Poverty should not exist in this “great” nation.  But it does.

And Republicans (may they rot in hell or be condemned to live in Rathbone or Troupsburg where they burn Amish barns, or a trailer park in Cameron or anywhere in Appalachia or an Indian reservation or …….) are pushing to cut federal funding for abortions.  Who will suffer most?  The unwanted children born to women who can ill afford to have them.  Below are the comments I included in the petition.

Dear Tom (Reed),
I need you to know that I vehemently oppose H.R.7, and I ask that you work to stop its progression in the House.

It is iniquitous for anyone, anywhere to compel a woman to bear a child she does not want and cannot afford.

Removing funding of abortions from Medicaid does just that.

Do you have the right?  Does being a member of congress actually confer on you the power to decide a woman’s future, very likely condemning her to continue leading a life of poverty. Because for women who can’t afford an abortion, who can’t even afford to get to the next county to find a provider, that is what you are doing.  Did you know that the nearest abortion provider for Corning is in Binghamton?
And what about the child?   America may be the land of opportunity, but a child born into poverty is likely to stay there for the rest of his or her miserable life.  Is that what you want?
I beg you, Tom, for once in your political career, think about the consequences of your vote.  Break with your party and vote in favor of those who are suffering and will continue to suffer if you do not.
Please, vote against H.R. 7.

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