Abortion advocates denied girl in need

November 29, 1996

YOUR NOV. 19 editorial, ''Fetus versus mother,'' sounds like you are blaming ''abortion opponents'' for Kawana Ashley's desperate act of shooting herself in the abdomen to end six-month pregnancy (and her daughter's life).

According to your editorial, instead of denying women access to abortion, abortion opponents should be doing more ''to prevent pregnancies women cannot responsibly carry to term."

While it's true opponents of abortion typically don't push birth control to teen-agers, they do stand ready to provide practical help and support to girls like Kawana.

When Kawana turned to the pro-women/pro-child/pro-choice people for help, they turned their back on her and abandoned her when she couldn't pay the $1,350 abortion fee.

Apparently, their help extended only as far as Kawana's ability to pay for it, and the price was too high.

Had she turned instead to abortion opponents and the ''abortion alternative'' agencies they've established, Kawana could have freely received the individualized help she needed. Such agencies offer services such as housing, maternity care, adoption counseling, clothing, food and baby supplies -- all free of charge.

Because of the many abortion alternative services available today, no girl needs to feel pressured to end her pregnancy.

Kawana would be better off today if she had picked up the phone instead of a gun.

Laura Conrad

Glen Arm

Pub Date: 11/29/96

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