Friday, May 23, 2008

Where's Our Focus?

My day started out with a trip to my local gas station. (Fortunately it was payday!) As I watched the cost to fill up continue to rise one fast number at a time, I really got to thinking…

I am a political person. I love politics. I love to follow everything from city council, school board and county commission all the way up to the race for the White House. I’m a news junkie even though I left the profession. I love that South Dakota is seeing the two candidates for the Democratic nomination visit our fine state multiple times. It’s a fun time to live in South Dakota.
BUT, it really discourages me that every single day, every single year, my thoughts and energies are focused on ONE issue: reproductive justice for women and families in this state.

Please do not misunderstand. I absolutely love my job. I enjoy coming to work every single morning. I am not tired by the debate. I have the energy to keep fighting this crucial fight. However, it seems to me that there are issues out there facing South Dakota’s fine families that we don’t even get to work on or focus on because every year in this state, we’re too worried about the personal decisions that are being made between families, doctors and their patients.

I often make my decisions at the polling place based on what this person means to the cause I so believe in. That makes it tough to think about things like the cost of gas, the rising cost of my groceries, healthcare, the economy, the war on terror, education. These are critical issues that our elected representatives should be focusing on. Instead, in South Dakota, we need to be worried about government intrusion into the personal lives of women and their families. I think it’s all wrong.

Initiated Measure 11 is already on the ballot. There’s nothing we can do about that. What we can do, is vote down this intrusive and cruel ban. Once we’ve done that, we will finally be able to focus on reducing abortion by reducing unintended pregnancy. We will also be able focus on those other important issues facing our families.

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