Thanks for Marsh vote

Pam Marsh’s guest opinion piece “A vote for equity” in the July 5 Tidings made me very happy for the women of Oregon. I want to thank Pam for voting for House Bill 3391B (the Reproductive Health Equity Act), and thus supporting women’s rights and access to birth control and reproductive health care.

Pam articulated the case for Bill 3391B very clearly and with much sincerity. I applaud her intelligence, her sincere caring for the women of Oregon and her dedication to improving the lives of all women and men in Oregon. Furthermore, I admire her courage. Unfortunately, these days it does take courage to voice strong support for women’s rights, especially reproductive rights including, when necessary, access to safe, legal abortion.

Like Pam, I lived through a time of turmoil over women’s rights. I graduated from college in 1968, five years before the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973. During those five years, I had two friends who almost died from back-alley abortions, and all of us heard of women resorting to desperate and often deadly measures to end unwanted pregnancies.

After the Roe decision and once the birth control pill was more widely available, women were able to exert more power over their reproductive health. As Pam writes, this fundamentally changed the course of our lives. And I would add that it fundamentally changed life for the better for all women who came afterward, regardless of their position on the Roe decision.

Over the last several years, there has been a strong movement in this country to reverse the progress made on women’s rights. In fact, right now, the U.S. Congress is threatening to defund Planned Parenthood. This is insane. If the objective is to reduce the number of abortions, then the one organization that everyone should support wholeheartedly is Planned Parenthood.

Thanks to Pam and other representatives who support House Bill 3391B, the women of Oregon at least will be guaranteed the right to birth control and reproductive health care regardless of what happens in Washington, D.C.

Thank you, Pam. I am very grateful that you represent District 5 in the Oregon House.

Paula Fox

Ashland