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Abortion Issues: the 'Gag Rule' and the Role of Men

Regarding the article "New Federal Rule Stymies Clinics," April 16: Congress created the Title X program under the Public Health Act to provide family planning defined by preventing or promoting pregnancy, not by promoting pregnancy termination.

This federal program has always prohibited the use of Title X funds "in programs where abortion is a method of family planning" (Section 1008).

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The family-planning clinics interviewed by the author grieve that counseling a woman on all her options will no longer be allowed under the regulations, when in reality these clinics were acting outside of congressional intent by advocating abortion as just another form of family planning.

The Supreme Court-approved Title X regulations simply implement the program's statutory distinction between birth control and abortion. Mark D. Epley, Arlington, Va.

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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