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Religion and the abortion debate

The opinion-page column "The Abortion Wars," Aug. 16, like most media coverage, emphasizes women's right to "choose" an abortion, while ignoring the complexities of the issue.Our society, the media, and abortion clinics all encourage abortion as a morally neutral "treatment of choice" for any inconvenient pregnancy. Yet, until recently, both Christianity and Judaism forbade abortion as destructive of life or (at least) potential life. In view of this, should Christians and Jews (or Muslims or Buddhists, who have similar beliefs) remain silent while life is being destroyed? If nothing else, the civil disobedience of Operation Rescue has forced us to consider this question. If the churches had boldly faced this question 20 years ago, we might not be facing the present-day propaganda deluge to legalize suicide and euthanasia as the "treatment of choice" for the dying, elderly, and brain-damaged. Nancy K. O'Connor, Nanty Glo, Pa.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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