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Letter to the editor
November 4, 2003
by Pat Taylor

Comment #1

In Unexpectedly Expecting: Pregnancy After 40, many reasons for getting or not getting pregnant, and/or aborting, were listed, but the following points were not addressed:

1) While "just over half of pregnancies [in women after 40] are unintended", that leaves just *under* half of pregnancies which *were* intended.

2) The high percentage of women over 40 who got abortions might have physical, financial, or other reasons for doing so, but so do many younger women for the same or other reasons. The fact that over-40's *did* opt for abortions indicates a real degree of knowledgeable choice on their part. With age comes a better understanding of what an abortion is all about, including but not limited to a change in the individual's concept of morality involving abortion. They were not afraid to make that choice, based on their own circumstances.

3) All of these speculations get us nowhere; the truth is the experts don't have the answer. There are too many individual choices involved to state categorically why women over 40 would abort or not. The statisticians only gave us numbers; they should now go back to the drawing board until they can come up with a more precise explanation; better yet, leave us alone and just stop worrying about us!

Comment #2

Do we know how this program, "Talking About Touching" was presented? There are activities mentioned in the article (such as adults touching kids on the motorcycle ride or getting ready for bed) that kids *should* know about, should be aware of in their daily contact with adults. If the program is presented properly, it should be warning the child that this is not acceptable behavior by the adult (including priests and nuns!), and the child should be guided in what to do and how to react to it, if it occurs. The activities mentioned should not be used as a 'learning tool' for the child. In addition the program should be geared to the proper ages when it is presented.

But inappropriate touching is not the only activity that children should be warned against, and certainly is not the only aspect of sex education; what else does the program entail? And again: how is it presented? If it is only a 'Look what we can do together' type of program, then it probably is wrong; but if it attempts to guide the child to be on guard in the realm of touching, then it may have some benefits.

Overreaction to the name of COYOTE was inevitable from some of the parents. And political correctness will no doubt eliminate "Talking About Touching" from the curriculum. Which is a shame if it did have something worthwhile to offer.

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