To the editor:
Most of the world is in chaos. We in this country are fortunate that even in the face of an ever more-sharply divisive national political scene, the real United States continues to produce food, educate its children, manufacture goods, heal the sick and deal with natural disasters.
In seeking a viable platform for the presidential campaign, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, etc., have decided that the most urgent issue in the country is contraception, and they claim this stand on the basis of religious convictions. Even if this were true, what happened to the separation of church and state? Should the entire population of the United States cease using contraception because some people allege that they don't believe in it? Note that I said "allege." I don't believe for one moment that any of these candidates had their two or three progeny and then God made them or their spouses infertile. I'm sure they did an end-run around "be fruitful and multiply" and are pleased that modern contraception is safe and certain.
For the love of God, can anyone honestly accept Gingrich as the arbiter of religious scruples and family values? Has no one noticed that Romney was a strong pro-choice supporter as governor of Massachusetts? To quote the Wizard of Oz, "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain."
What do these people who oppose all contraception want? A return to every family having eight or 10 children to be fed, clothed and educated? Mothers who die as a direct result of being perpetually pregnant? A family with a living mother and fewer children has a distinct advantage over this scenario.
Look at the families around you. How many have more than two or three children? Aren't they better off than comparable families of two or three generations ago? Contraception provides a better life for everyone, and doesn't deprive anyone of life. Women are not brood mares, they have the right to choose how many children they will give birth to. This is not the concern of politicians whose morals, religious beliefs and social consciences are flexible and opportunistic.
Ruth E. Casey