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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    Abortion ban too far-reaching

    It must be said that Janne Perona accurately represented in her Tuesday column the anti-choice sentiment that the life of a fetus is superior to that of the woman who carries it. Her column does not sufficiently address her question of whether “”partial-birth abortion”” is really a procedure that should be used; medical facts concerning the health and safety of a human being are in fact more resounding answers to her statement regarding the conditional usage of late-term abortion when “”merely the mother’s health is at risk.””

    First of all, there is no such thing as “”partial-birth abortion.”” This phrase is not recognized by the medical community. It is impotent rhetoric, emotionally charging the medical procedure known as “”dilation and extraction,”” or D&X, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Only 17 percent of all abortions are D&X abortions, and this procedure is usually preformed when the fetus is already dead, when there is a grave fetal abnormality or when a woman lacks access to an abortion specialist. Because D&X is performed under local anesthesia, it is safer than most other options.

    The problem with the so-called Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act is the terminology of the law, so vaguely drawn up that it not only prohibits D&X but also other late-term abortion procedures.

    And regarding Perona’s assumption of the statute’s legality: Yes, it’s true that a woman’s written right to obtain an abortion was established in 1973 with Roe v. Wade, yet it’s also true that anti-choice, anti-women activists have attacked a woman’s right to control her own body consistently since that day.

    To argue that the fetus of the woman has more rights than the woman is to say that one’s arm has more rights than one’s brain, or that emotion has more rights than intelligence. The real victims of this ban are the women whose only goal is the reclamation of their own bodies. The “”partial-birth abortion”” ban is created both to restrict abortion and also to shame our mothers, our daughters, our aunts, sisters and nieces.

    Ariel Tinney
    anthropology and ecology and evolutionary biology senior

    Gabriel Matthew
    undeclared freshman

    Comparison shows Islamic states come up short

    Tawfik Maudah claimed in his letter yesterday, “”only a fool would reject the many contributions Islam have (sic) given to the rest of the world,”” but never bothered to enumerate those contributions. Fortunately, thanks to a 2002 report published by the Regional Bureau for Arab States and the United Nations titled “”The Arab Human Development Report 2002: Creating Opportunities for Future Generations,”” the many triumphs of contemporary Arab and Islamic states are recorded.

    A primary success noted in the report is the comparative economic situation between the Arab world as a whole and the European nation of Spain. The combined GDP of all Arab countries from 1999 totaled $531.2 billion; Spain’s GDP the same year was $595.5 billion.

    For intellectual achievements the report notes the entire Arab world yearly translates about 330 books, which equals about 20 percent of what Greece translates annually. Also, the report estimates that since the ninth century A.D. the total number of translated books in the Arab world sits at about 100,000 – nearly as many as Spain translates in one year.

    In human rights, countries of the Islamic world fare little better. Saudi Arabia, for example, only moved to outlaw slavery in the 1960s, though some human rights groups claim the practice continues today. Voting rights: Women, of course, cannot vote.

    A grisly event in 2002 stands as an illustration of the plight of Saudi women. The Saudi Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice allegedly used sticks to beat back a group of schoolgirls, forcing them into a flame-engulfed dormitory where they lived. At least 12 girls died in the blaze; however, they did transgress, having the temerity to flee a burning building before properly covering themselves.

    Yes, we certainly have our failings in the Western world, but could any intellectually honest person really make comparisons between contemporary Western societies with those of self-identified Islamic states?

    Patrick McNamara
    journalism senior

    Humanitarian aid encourages illegal immigration

    I feel that Octavio Fuentes’ Wednesday response to Michael Huston’s Tuesday column regarding illegal immigration was overly harsh. Wanting to know who is entering the United States at any given time isn’t “”xenophobic.”” Xenophobic would be banning immigration entirely.

    The problem is not that No More Deaths is trying to “”save”” or “”rescue”” illegal immigrants by providing them with water and medical attention. The problem is that doing so only encourages more immigrants to cross illegally, and after a time, No More Deaths’ efforts will spread thinner and thinner until its existence is nigh irrelevant. As Fuentes points out, the reason immigrants continue to cross illegally from Mexico to the U.S. is political, and I personally feel that a group such as No More Deaths might be more productive spending its time and energy attempting to work out and assist in managing those political and economic issues within Mexico rather than encouraging more illegal immigration into the U.S.

    That said, I cannot agree with the comparison of illegal immigrants from Mexico to escaping slaves in the 19th century.

    Although slaves were barely considered human, they were still legal residents of the U.S. Simply requiring immigrants to be documented is not a radical, earth-shaking ideal; it is a rational and reasonable expectation. Try instead drawing a parallel to the idea of taxation without representation – illegal immigrants are getting representation within the U.S. without full taxation (they pay sales taxes, but often not property or income taxes). How is that fair to everyone else?

    Julie Holden
    fine arts sophomore

    Connections, not GPAs, matter in employment

    There is more to college than a grade point average. I was never asked once by my current employer about my GPA, and currently enjoy a successful job for a recent graduate. The same is true for all my UA friends who have recently graduated. Perhaps students should focus less on making that 8 a.m. Friday class and focus more on human interaction and networking, which can be achieved at a number of fine watering holes in Tucson. I mean, after all, the “”A”” students eventually do work for the “”C”” students, don’t they?

    As for Tawfik Maudah’s letter yesterday: I can get in touch with my greek chapter at the UA so it can raise enough money to buy a one-way ticket for Maudah to Iran, or a Middle Eastern nation of Maudah’s choice. I am sure that Maudah will be greeted warmly with beating breasts and plenty of religious fervor to feel “”more at home.””

    Bill Stack
    UA alumnus

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