LETTER: Doctors are confused, scared; they need abortion law clarity

To Ozaukee Press:

Wisconsin’s current abortion law dates to 1849. It was signed into law about 25 years before handwashing was adopted by physicians as a universal practice. Medicine has come a long way since then.

I have been reading horror stories about pregnant women who needed abortions because of severe fetal problems and who have gotten very sick because doctors are confused about what they can do without being prosecuted.

It seems that each hospital is making up its own definition of what “to save the life of the mother” means, and doctors are scared to provide the level of care that they once provided. I don’t blame them.

So, at the end of July, I wrote to my two state legislators and to Assembly Speaker Robin Vos. I suggested that they put together a panel of obstetricians to discuss various complications of pregnancy so that they could craft a law that reflects the reality of modern medicine. We need clarity.

From State Rep. Terry Katsma’s office, I got a generic letter inviting me to contact them any time. State Sen. Devin LeMahieu’s office told me that the overturning of Roe means that states get to decide for themselves. LeMahieu told me I could vote in November for candidates who share my opinion about abortion, which would sound more sincere if he weren’t running unopposed this fall. Vos did not answer.

Please, however you feel about abortion—against it, against it with exceptions, in favor during the first trimester or in favor with few limitations—take the time to tell your elected representatives. Republican lawmakers are sitting in a bubble in Madison. We’re paying them to represent us; they need to know how we feel, and so far, they haven’t asked. Women’s lives are at stake.

Please remember, too, that when abortion is severely limited, we need really effective social safety nets for women and families before, during and after delivery.

Kate Redmond



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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