Letter to the Editor: Abortion Crosses


It becomes clear to me that I cannot argue one position without stating my stance on the other. Those in the anti-abortion movement believe life begins at conception. I do not. Father Rutten wrote, “I would agree that even one unnecessary death is too many but we must realize that the death of a soldier is not the same as the death of a child in the womb.” I could not agree more.

But can he or any anti-abortionist honestly say their grief for a nameless, faceless (insert preferred term) equals the pain felt by survivors of those killed in war? I do not have that level of empathy. Nor can I parse the value of life by geographic location or period of time. So South Dakota’s share of the war dead is 17 of 2,607 American deaths. That is a statistic. Isn’t it time to think about what that statistic represents? The crosses representing abortion statistics are a rhetorical device seeking to confer personhood. I challenge Father Rutten and the other priests and pastors in Brookings to place crosses on their church lawns to represent the real personhood of those formerly alive but now dead from the war in Iraq. Unfortunately, I don’t think there is a church lawn large enough to accomodate crosses for the dead Iraqi women, children, and other non-combatants. Better have plenty of crosses to spare as the casualties mount.

Kathy GustafsonBrookings, SDSDSU alumni