No Model Seen
Editor: I certainly agree that the health crisis in this country is scandalous, as Joan Lobell said in her Feb. 8 letter. However I must question her proposal to adopt the Canadian health plan model. Ms. Lobell suggests that we ask any Canadian if he or she would move here for health care after crossing the border for elective surgery.
We might better ask the Canadians why they are crossing the border for elective surgery? Canadians, myself included, are very aware of the inadequacies of our health-care system. If Ms. Lobell is looking for a fair system, I would suggest that the Canadian system can provide that -- if you are willing to accept the level of care being offered.
Elective surgery for what may be a very debilitating ailment may take months to be scheduled. In some cases there is a limit to how many procedures per year can be performed at a particular hospital. One might ask an American in need of a cardiac catheterization if he or she would choose to be a patient in Canada in December when the catheterization quotas have already been filled.
Canadians doctors, long frustrated by a fettered and difficult working situation, have gone on strike, left their country to work in the United States or, as many are doing now, work only the two weeks out of four for which they are basically getting paid.
The end result of all of this is poor patient care. Fewer and fewer qualified people are choosing to enter the field of medicine. Where does that leave us in the end?
Editor: The University of Maryland is to eliminate eight academic departments affecting 1,700 students but not eliminate any faculty members?
The faculty members are to be assigned to other academic disciplines. What other disciplines? Isn't the purpose of the university to teach? How many hours do each of the faculty spend teaching now? If there are to be 1,700 students that can no longer be supported by state funds why must the faculty be retained?
The messages seems clear. The administrators are more interested in retaining the present faculty than in educating the students.
If the present staff were required to spend more time on instruction and less on writing papers or doing research, then the proposed savings of $3.7 million could be achieved.
When GM or IBM downsize, unnecessary employees are let go. Where is it written that unnecessary faculty at the University of Maryland are not normal human beings? Where is it written that the administrators of the university have the right to preserve their empire even if the state taxpayers are overburdened?
Charles D. Connelly.
Editor: As religious coordinator for Maryland Right To Life, I need to take issue with statements made by Rev. Matthew McNaught of Religious Coalition for Abortion Rights in his Feb. 3 letter to the editor.
The single issue of pregnancy as a result of incest or rape is so minute that it should not even be considered as a valid motive for destroying an innocent infant for the crime of its father. Less than one percent of all pregnancies are the result of these criminal acts.
What is worse is that the crimes of incest and rape are not even investigated if the victim decides to get an abortion.
This is absolutely deplorable in the case of minors who have abortions without parental notification, much less consent, and the criminal father is not even indicted for his crime of statutory rape, a felony in Maryland.
There is no moral defense for induced abortion. No woman has any right to commit a moral wrong.
There is no Biblical basis for claiming that a woman has this ''religious liberty'' and ''it is her God-given sovereignty over her own body.'' For hundreds of years the church and state both agreed on this ethical issue.
Nobody has any God-given sovereignty over his or her own body. We are not our own; we belong to God.
The state places limitations on what we may or may not do to our own bodies for the common welfare. You may not jeopardize the freedom of another, walk naked down the street, jump in front of a moving car, mutilate your body, use drugs abusively or alcohol excessively.
These are all crimes against self and society, restricted by laws, for which a person may be arrested, tested and incarcerated. Where is this ''God-given sovereignty over her own body''?
The simple moral dilemma is that every abortion stops the beating heart of an innocent human being who is denied the right to live and to make this choice for himself or herself.
Robert T. Woodworth.
Editor: The possibility of Baltimore City withdrawing financial support from its cultural institutions is probably the narrowest, most short-sighted, and potentially the most damaging solution imaginable to Baltimore's budgetary problems.