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The Journal Gazette

Friday, February 23, 2018 1:00 am


Charge unwarranted

In Anderson, where 20 percent of newborns are drug-exposed, Kelli Leever-Driskel was charged with murder for a premature stillbirth caused by placental abruption.

Prosecutor Rodney Cummings wrongly claims people take drugs while pregnant because they're selfish. Every medical society opposes police involvement concerning behavior during pregnancy. Punishment is no deterrent to drug use while pregnant. Instead, it is a deterrent to urgently needed health care and an incentive for abortion.

It's not that pregnant people choose to use drugs. People who are addicted to drugs get pregnant. There is a medical protocol for optimal management, and criminal charges are not a part.  

It's already tragic. We call for dropping all pregnancy-related charges against Kelli Driskel. Health care, not handcuffs!

Dr. Sue Ellen Braunlin

Carolyn Meagher


Indiana Religious Coalition

in Support of Reproductive Justice

Climate responders need our support

The latest news about “speeding up the already fast pace of sea level rise,” which is the direct effect of ocean warming and atmospheric-based ice melting, once again raises the alert level for most people who have the good sense to read the news and recognize that we need to take action. Incredibly, this is still considered “fake news” by some of our leaders and their followers.

Yet even a skeptic may concede that it is better to divest our carbon-polluting technology at great cost and possibly offset even higher costs of disastrous storms and other ills from overuse of our resources. Trillions of dollars can be moved from making war, and defense based on guns and bombs, to building a renewable energy world economy and rehabilitating our denuded river watersheds and abused oceans.

The definition of an emergency is “an unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action,” and clearly we have those very conditions in the unexpected “speeding up” disastrous consequences of whatever we call the collapse or disruptive change of our ecosystems. Science is enabling us to see that many people, and entire species of plants and animals, are dying now or will die prematurely due to the lax response of our leaders in making the transition to a cleaner and more energy-efficient future.

I urge you, your church, service club, union local or however you take action to support local first responders to this climate emergency such as the Save Maumee Grassroots Organization, ACRES Land Trust, Sierra Club and others.

Howard Traxmor

Fort Wayne

Echoes of the 1930s

So President Donald Trump wants a parade that celebrates American military prowess, and Rep. Jim Banks wants to stage it in northeast Indiana. For maximum impact, such extravaganzas must be carefully choreographed. I recommend that planners carefully study the films of Leni Riefenstahl for useful pointers. And if the cost of such a spectacle becomes an issue, a very appropriate financial sponsor might be the Buzz Windrip Foundation.

Jim Farlow