To the Editor:
This letter is a response to a recent column by Jack Kenny regarding the testimony of Sandra Fluke before Congress ["Creating a Need," Reston Connection, March 28-April 3, 2012]. There are several demeaning, less than factual and condescending terms used by Mr. Kenny to describe/comment on Ms. Fluke's testimony. Of note: Mr. Kenny said "knowing her background" and that she failed to mention previous 10 years as an outspoken activist for women’s rights. I am unaware that such activity is unlawful, out of the purview of an American citizen's right to free speech or to work for justice regarding a cause she believes in. Mr. Kenny stated that what is "most offensive" is the "idea that recreational sex is included in reproductive rights". What part of Ms. Fluke's testimony mentioned "recreational sex"? Mr. Kenny omitted the extremely important fact that birth control pills are prescribed for various painful and dangerous problems of the female reproductive system. I know this because I am a woman and know many men who also know this because they care about women. Mr. Kenny referred to Rush Limbaugh's comments regarding Ms. Fluke as simply "ill-chosen words" and "colorful". Mr. Kenny neglected to mention Mr. Limbaugh's "colorful" reference or request to watch Ms. Fluke having this "recreational sex." There are words for people who wish to watch other people having sex. Perhaps "perverted" comes to mind. Mr. Kenny stated that birth control decisions should be between [among] a woman, her pastor, and her husband. I would not put the pastor between a husband and wife but this is a proper concept...and an amazingly recent one not favored by some Republican candidates who then espouse the idea that government should stay out of citizens' lives. Mr. Kenny seems very concerned repaying for "unmet needs." Those of us who have insurance do that every day, whether for a very ill insured person or one who is not insured.
We are left with the question of what kind of a country do we want...one in which uninsured human beings (children among them) die for lack of affordable care or one in which we cooperate to further a nation of the healthiest and most productive citizens possible? Mr. Kenny refers to "the opulent life style of the occupants of the White House." Is he referring solely to the Obamas? Have we not had wealthy presidents before? And is not the prospective nominee of Mr. Kenny's party living in opulence? Is opulence a good thing when one is a Republican but maligned when a Democrat? The state of political discourse in our country is simply sad and unfortunate and will be a dark part of our history as a great country. It does nothing to bring us together for intelligent and respectful discussion to find answers to mutual problems. Commentary such as Mr. Kenny's does not help.