How do we get Santa Fe’s attention?
I’m a reader and a voter and have a question — has Santa Fe forgotten about us?
Rural communities around New Mexico are struggling with a lot of the same problems you are, but nobody’s paying attention. We’re facing crime down here, too; our unemployment rate is higher than it should be; we’re losing important industries; and we get almost none of the aid and attention lavished on Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Where is our help?
Politicians here have viewed rural communities the way Australians viewed the Outback: Go in only if you must, only briefly, and never go alone. Why should anyone from the cities of Albuquerque or Santa Fe make decisions for me, a fifth-generation cattle rancher along the Mexican border who voted for a governor who, it turns out, doesn’t know how the rural economy works? Why have I seen more of Donald Trump along the border than Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham?
How do we get Santa Fe’s attention? We already send our brightest; a lot of the best representatives we’ve ever had were raised on farms and ranches outside the cities. We come to Santa Fe all the time. When are you guys going to come down here?
Jason K. Watkins
Reproductive rights and wrongs
Given that the Alabama Legislature has passed the most restrictive anti-abortion measure in recent history and that several states have either passed or are working on passing similar or slightly less draconian measures, it is only fair that we ask men to shoulder some of the responsibility for the abortion dilemma. So, in this spirit, I would propose that along with this legislation, the law should provide that all men, upon reaching the age where they are capable of fathering a child, receive some form of a reversible vasectomy procedure. The reversal of the procedure would occur only when a man was to enter into marriage. While this would not prevent rape, it would eliminate the need for a substantial portion of the abortions. Further, the law would also recognize that a man’s responsibility for fathering a child is as great as that of the woman who is forced to carry the pregnancy to term.
Making us proud
On Thursday, May 16, I was in Las Vegas, N.M., and heard Teresa Leger Fernandez, a Democrat, announce her candidacy for the 3rd Congressional District seat. She was making history, and I didn’t want to miss it. Leger Fernandez could be the first Hispanic woman to serve in Congress from that district.
Seeing the expression on the faces of young women in the audience that day, I could not help but think about the impact she is having on their futures. Leger Fernandez is not only running for Congress; she, like Congresswomen Deb Haaland and Xochitl Torres Small, is mentoring the next generation of female leaders. I, as do so many other Hispanic women, feel very proud. Teresa Leger Fernandez represents the best in all of us.
Destiny of the nation
The Georgia, Alabama and Missouri abortion laws are simply anti-woman. Interestingly during the 18th and early 19th centuries, abortion of early pregnancy was legal under common law. Abortion was not just legal — it was a safe, condoned and practiced procedure in Colonial America and appeared in the legal and medical records of the period.
In 1856, misguided pro-life advocate Dr. Horatio Storer established a national drive — known as his “physician’s crusade against abortion” — by the American Medical Association to end legal abortion. In 1868, his main concern was whether the American West would “be filled by our own children or by those of aliens [immigrants].” He crazily stated: “This is a question our women must answer; upon their loins depends the future destiny of the nation.” Storer’s solution was to require women of European stock to carry pregnancies to term and to make abortion a crime.
The GOP wants us to return to the hideous world of Horatio Storer that made abortion illegal and dangerous. This was the era of the back-alley abortion, of the coat hanger, which claimed the lives of thousands of women.