Your April 9 article about federal funding for Planned Parenthood, "Funds for Planned Parenthood were a major point of contention," reduced the organization to being simply a "national abortion provider." This biased and misleading statement serves to sway uninformed readers that Planned Parenthood's only focus is the termination of unwanted pregnancies.
Planned Parenthood's focus is primarily pregnancy prevention through education. According to Planned Parenthood's 2008-2009 Annual Report, abortions accounted for only 3 percent of services provided to the nearly 3 million women cared for by its clinics. Contraception makes up 36 percent of its services.
You should stick to reporting the facts.
No such thing as an unwanted child
While I acknowledge that organizations such as Planned Parenthood offer many needed and valuable services to the community, women are still finding themselves with unintended pregnancies. An April 9 Reader's Forum letter, "Support women's right to choose," ends with: "Every child should be a wanted child."
Please. There is no such thing as an unwanted child. With hundreds of thousands of couples waiting to adopt a baby in this country, every child is wanted.
Maybe the "right to choose" would be better served as: the right to keep your child, or the right to place your child into the loving arms of an adoptive family.
What a beautiful and life- changing gift that would be.
Recognizing the child in the womb
I am adamantly against abortion and Planned Parenthood, but I am glad to see the people who work at Planned Parenthood now recognize the infant in the womb as a child.
The April 9 Readers' Forum letter writer, a former director of volunteer services and special events for Planned Parenthood of Northwest Ohio, does not hide behind the term "fetal tissue" or any other wording that tries to dehumanize the person, but four times calls the person in the womb a child.
Maybe if more of the people who support and work for Planned Parenthood would see them as children, they would be less likely to legally kill them.
Abortion debate: emotion vs. reason
I wish we could replace some of the emotion in the abortion debate with reason. I've noticed that many people who oppose abortion also vehemently oppose government funding for nutrition, shelter, and education. It seems to me that if you want to deny poor women the option of abortion, you are duty bound to defend funding for their needs.
I am also perplexed by people who feel a pregnant girl doesn't deserve an out. Shouldn't a baby get a better break than to be something that happens to a girl because she was "bad"?
I know all about the adoption option, but I also know that fewer than 4 percent of unmarried girls surrender their babies. The surest path to lifelong poverty is for an unmarried girl to have and keep her baby. Enter the taxpayer.
Port Clinton, Ohio
Why deprive child of a good life?
If a poor woman does not have an abortion, one should wonder why Republicans, who cherish the sanctity of life, would want to deprive the poor child, once it's born, of school lunches, a bus ride to school, Medicaid, housing assistance, and police protection in the crime-ridden neighborhood in which the child lives.
Do they want to kill a kid with malnutrition, untreated illnesses, homelessness, or molestation and murder by some pedophile or drug dealer who trolls the neighborhood? Meanwhile, an increasing number of wealthy people join the ranks of millionaires every day.
While we're at it, why don't we cut the minimum wage and have Americans live on two bucks a day? We may not end up with any average Americans who can buy cars and refrigerators, but we can sell those Chinese-made products to the prosperous Chinese, and we won't even have to ship them abroad.
Statistics Web site a good resource
Kirk Walters' March 23 "Maumee Dearest" cartoon about the government's statistics collection shows the frustration of many Toledoans with current economic conditions. But I have much faith in our community and our ability to develop our potential.
While many local statistical findings may seem to be no-brainers, they are collectively of great value to planners, researchers, and those involved in networking.
For example, as state money for local governments becomes scarcer, it may be valuable for local government administrators to form partnerships with other local governments. A resource such as patchworknation.org may prove to be of some value. This Web site provides statistical information on communities by county ("Boom Towns," "Monied 'Burbs") and congressional districts.
It is easy to discount statistics at a local level. However, when statistics are collected and effectively analyzed at regional and higher levels, they are great tools for planning and, as a University of Toledo program promotes, improving the human condition.
I am not telling our county administrators where to search for information and I have yet to come across any statistics source that has all needed information. As a reference librarian, I know firsthand how challenging it is to find statistics.
No room in budget for nuclear power
Nuclear power is inherently dirty and dangerous and has no place in this year's budget. President Obama approved $36 billion in proposed taxpayer giveaways to do just that. In light of the nuclear crisis in Japan, I am angered and disgusted by this.
Wall Street refuses to invest in new nuclear plants because they are not economically viable, which is why there hasn't been a new reactor built in the United States in more than 30 years.
We should learn from the horrific events unfolding at Japan's Fukushima plant. There are more than 104 reactors in the United States and 23 are the same model as Fukushima. Do we really need more of these ticking time bombs in our backyard?
In 2004, a hole the size of a football was discovered in a reactor head at the Davis-Besse nuclear plant. It's terrifying to think of the consequences our community would have suffered had this not been caught in time.
There is just no room for dangerous nuclear power in the budget. We need to put tax dollars toward cleaner, safer energy.
U.S. should take care of its own
It is time that we cease sending our dollars to foreigners and take care of our own. Israel is a prime example: It receives billions of dollars a year in U.S. aid. Israelis have womb-to-tomb insurance while some 20 million children in the United States are without medical insurance.
If the Israelis have problems, let them work them out with their own resources.
Let other nations look out for their own futures. And let their children -- not ours -- die in their wars.
THOMAS G. PAPPS
Column revealed reality of homeless
Ken Leslie's April 5 op-ed column, "A homily on hunger and humanity," was one of the best guest columns I've read in The Blade. He helped readers understand the reality of an issue that is distant for most people.
Mr. Leslie not only taught 40 teenagers to have empathy with hungry and homeless people; I'm sure he reached many readers too.