Saturday, October 22, 2016

YET ANOTHER REASON I AM PRO CHOICE

HER NAME WAS SUSAN

A recent diary posted at dKos discussed the remembrances of an old ER doctor in dealing with abortion before Roe v. Wade. That diary had a profound effect on me and forced me to relive an experience from my own medical school days more than 50 years ago.

Her name was Susan. She was young. She was beautiful. She was intelligent. She was articulate. She was dying…

Susan was a 23 year old single woman who came to Los Angeles in the early 60’s to pursue her dream to become an actress. She had played the leads in her high school plays somewhere in Utah. She was runner-up in the Miss Utah pageant. She managed to get a couple of walk-on parts in some B-grade Hollywood films. She was a starlet.

A year or so after coming to the West Coast she became pregnant. The father quickly faded away into faceless LA. Her good Christian parents were humiliated, outraged and wanted nothing to do with her. She was on her own. Broke. Friendless. Pregnant. Scared.

So she took the bus to San Diego, walked across the border and headed to a cheap, dirty Tijuana abortion clinic. Four hours later she was back on the other side of the border, in pain, bleeding and completely debased. By the next day, the pain had become unbearable and she was spiking a temperature. She went to a local emergency room and was hospitalized overnight at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica. She was subsequently transferred to the Medicine unit at UCLA Medical Center, at that time a small teaching hospital in its embryonic stages.

I was a 3rd year medical student in my first clinical rotation at UCLA. Susan was one of my first patients. We were about the same age. I was embarking on my medical career. Her life was ending

Over the next three weeks, I learned how people die from sepsis. Her uterus was perforated. She had developed gram-negative septicemia. Our knowledge of and access to antibiotics was primitive and limited. Eventually she went into renal failure. She burned with fever. She was racked with abdominal pain. The lovely face become sallow, sparkling eyes sunken, lifeless. Her skin turned a sickly bronze color. Her breath reeked the pungent stench of ammonia. After weeks of agony, her frail body mercifully surrendered.

As I recollect these painful images of my brief encounter with Susan, the most outrageous aspect of this experience is not even the way she died. It is that she died alone. During those three weeks, she never had a visitor. There was no boyfriend - he was off to other conquests. There were no parents - they disowned her in shame and embarrassment.

Even worse was the mindset of the medical staff. While she was given the requisite care, there was little, if any, sympathy or compassion for this young woman or her situation. There was always the profound sense that “she brought this on herself,” that she was, in the final analysis, just an unfortunate tramp - Even As She Lay Dying.

It is now 50 years later and I still carry this burden of shame for myself, my colleagues, my society, my country. And to this day, whenever the subject of Roe v Wade comes up, whenever I see and hear the holier-than-thou religious fanatics trying to take away the rights of a woman to control her own body, to make her own choices, to force her into the back alleys of Tijuana, I can still smell the stench of ammonia in the air.

Goodnight, Susan, we will not forget you.

Out of the Shadows


A friend, a decidedly Progressive one, related the following comment he received on his blog:
 
Some knucklehead named John Svelt just left the following comment on the latest piece on my blog:

"You're a disgusting race traitor or a goddamned jew."

Here was my answer:


"I am a race traitor. You got me there. Although not a Jew, I am, in fact, an honorary member of the international Jewish conspiracy."
It was a good, even humorous, response but in truth there is nothing funny about this longest hatred or any race hatred. Being Jewish and old enough I know they, the Jew haters, are SURELY out there. When the times present they will seize a rare opportunity to spew their venom of hate and hope for power. In the US, before Trump, these hate groups existed on the political periphery in forms like Lincoln Rockwell's American Nazi Party or Tom Metzger's "Race and Reason" and there were many others. In more modern times many also found life in the Republican Party fringe.

I do not know what kind of pathological cerebral configuration exists in their minds, how they arrived at the ridiculous conclusions that they do or whether it is simply a combination of nature/nurture but these Trumpian times have given a unique opportunity for the so called "Alt Right" to emerge out of the gaseous shadows of their primordial soup into the light.

I believe most of America is basically good but then again so did Anne Frank also believe in her heart that people are basically good. In view of her sad fate in another era we must in ours beware, be vigilant and never let these crackpots gain power. Power is deadly in Trumpian hands. No one will be safe, not you, not I, not your children and not your children's children which is why Trump, who gave these extremist malcontents on the right a forum MUST be crushed. Our nation on November 8 will be fighting for its life. GET OUT THE VOTE EVERYWHERE FOR HILLARY CLINTON.

"TRUMPLAND" -- GETTING OUT THE VOTE!

If any of you saw Larry O'Donnel then you know he had on the great documentarian Michael Moore talking about his new film "Trumpland." I will place the link below for you to view that segment.

Bottom Line: WE CANNOT BE COMPLACENT, WE CANNOT BE RELAXED BECAUSE THE POLLS LOOK SO GOOD. IF WE DO NOT GET OUT OUR VOTE, YES, TRUMP WINS. IN ALL THE STATES BUT ESPECIALLY THE SWING STATES OF STATES LIKE OHIO WHERE THE POLLING IS 45% TO 45% OUR VOTES NEED TO BE GOTTEN OUT. THIS IS A MUST.

POLITICO has identified 11 states where the 2016 election will be won and lost: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

IF YOU CAN IN ANY WAY POSSIBLE REACH THESE SWING STATES TO GET OUT THE VOTE FOR HILLARY CLINTON THEN PLEASE DO SO. YOU CAN DO IT IF YOU CAN GO TO ANY OF THOSE STATES AND CANVASS, YOU CAN DO IT BY GETTING IN TOUCH WITH HILLARY HEADQUARTERS IN YOUR TOWN AND ASK IF YOU CAN DO SO BY PHONE/COMPUTER HOOK UP, YOU CAN DO SO BY MORSE CODE OR SMOKE SIGNALS, BY HORSE OR ON FOOT BUT DO SO. ALL OF THE STATES LISTED ABOVE NEED GET OUT THE VOTE ACTION FOR HILLARY CLINTON.

IF SOMEONE NEEDS A RIDE TO THEIR POLLS GET THEM ONE, IF SOMEONE NEEDS PERSUADING DO SO AS LONG AS YOU DO SOMETHING. AS MICHAEL MOORE SAID THE US IS FILLED WITH GOOD PEOPLE BUT WE ARE ALSO A COUNTRY THAT ELECTED NIXON TWICE, WE ELECTED A SECOND RATE ACTOR REAGAN TWICE, AND WE ELECTED AN INCOMPETENT GEORGE BUSH TWICE AND ARE SUFFERING FROM HIS PRESIDENCY TO THIS DAY. DO NOT THINK THIS THING IS WON. IF YOU DO IT IS THEN THAT WE LOSE AND THE UNQUALIFIED TRUMP WINS. GET OUT THE VOTE FOR HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON HERE IN BLUE MASSACHUSETTS BUT GET OUT THE VOTE IN SO CALLED RED STATES TOO. THE STAKES ARE HUGE, THE NATION'S LIFE IS AT STAKE; YOUR LIFE AND YOUR CHILDREN'S LIFE AND THEIR CHILDREN'S LIFE IF THERE IS A PLANET ON WHICH TO LIVE IS AT STAKE. PLEASE TAKE THIS SERIOUSLY AND GET OUT THE VOTE BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY!


http://www.msnbc.com/the-last-word