Applying lessons in abortion battles

I am a Democrat who is a Catholic woman who has moderate disabilities due to cerebral palsy. While I think that Gov. Pritzker has done a very good job of trying his best to fight the Covid and Delta variant viruses, I do not understand how he can support the women who believe they have the right to kill their unborn children. Even to a person, who doesn’t think about God, murdering children who have been born is considered to be murder and a crime, isn’t it?

Perhaps, the true problem is too many people are disregarding religion. I mean even now the question of whether newborn babies who have severe disabilities should be saved occasionally is discussed instead of believing every life has value in God’s eyes and plan.

One thing that gives me a little hope, though, as far as our society is coming back to this belief is that when the vaccines for the Covid virus first were available people who were at the highest risk of dying from the deadly virus were the individuals who were urged to get the vaccines.

As a result, hopefully if people who are pro-life continue to pray and question, rather than fight with individuals who now believe that having abortions is not murdering, they will eventually come to understand that their thinking has been wrong.

Mary Merchen, Danville

Opening people’s eyes to problems men face

This letter is written to comment on the article “Depression of Men,” written by Dr. Richard Elghammer, published on Oct. 9, 2021. Although this is technically a “letter to the editor,” I feel a strong inclination to address Dr. Richard Elghammer.

Dr. Elghammer, thank you for writing this article. The hidden issue of men struggling with depression and other mental health concerns is arguably one of the greatest causes of the social issues you listed, such as suicide rates, domestic violence, etc. You brilliantly broke down the way boys and men are raised in this society to repress feelings and not ask for help, and the consequences of these socially desirable attributes. But at the end of the day, these traits aren’t as desirable as boys grow into men and face a multitude of situations they were never emotionally prepared for.

We consistently do men a disservice by reinforcing unhealthy ideas of what strength and masculinity means. Without learning how to safely express emotions, ask for support, and build strong relationships with fellow men, I sadly understand why suicide rates are so high in the male population. It makes sense why domestic violence perpetrators are men, more often than not. It is easy to blame individuals for behavior that is violent and harmful, but we also have to take a look at the deeper causes and bigger picture. Accountability can not only lie with the individual, but with the situation that was crafted around them.

Men in this society are collectively going through one of the most emotionally and socially difficult times in modern history as gender roles are changing, social rules are shifting, behavior expectations are rising. This is all happening while we fail to support men through these changes and challenges, leaving them to do guess work and figure out the world alone.

You have taken an impressive step at making a moment for people to read about these issues.

My hope is we all can create and hold space for men to heal and grow, free of judgment and full of love.

Morgan Kelley, Chicago (formerly of Danville)

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