The 1950s weren’t wonderful for everyone

The author of a recent OpEd in the BDN, “ The 1950s were a wonderful decade,” states that “abortion was a rarity.”

This is not true. According to the Guttamacher Intitute, in that decade illegal abortions are estimated to have numbered between 200,000 to 1 million each year.

These numbers likely don’t include the women who caused their own abortions using desperate, unsafe measures that killed some of them.

In the 1950s, I was told by friends who had children but wanted no more, that they flew to Puerto Rico for abortions.

The 1950s was undoubtedly a wonderful decade for white, middle-class people, for men educated by the GI Bill, for straight Americans and for the New York Yankees.

They were not so good for many others.

Peg Cruikshank


Lowering prescription drug prices

In June, the Maine Legislature passed a comprehensive package of bills that became game-changing law in the ongoing battle for affordable and accessible prescription drugs. The U.S. House of Representatives will soon consider its own legislation, co-sponsored by Rep. Jared Golden: the Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3). By giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower prices, H.R. 3 could provide even more meaningful relief for Mainers than we can accomplish at the state level.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, H.R. 3 would reduce the prices of prescription drugs by up to nearly 55 percent. Prices would go down regardless of how you get your insurance. Whether you have diabetes or a rare illness, this bill would bring drug prices down for everyone.

Republicans have repeatedly tried to obstruct the passage of H.R. 3. This is no surprise since many of these lawmakers sit comfortably in the deep pockets of pharmaceutical companies. Time and time again, Republicans’ actions in Washington prove they simply aren’t fighting for families and consumers.

The bill is on its way to the House for a vote. Maine’s efforts must be shored up by national action in Washington. We need Congress to act against the drug companies that are just too big for state legislatures to battle entirely on our own. For too long, too many Mainers have stayed up at night worrying about rising prescription drug prices, and having to choose between buying their medication or paying rent. That would end if Congress would take action and pass H.R. 3.

Sen. Heather Sanborn


Things I don’t believe

When I was a boy growing up Irish-Catholic in East Boston, Massachusetts, I was frequently required to recite “ The Apostles’ Creed,” an avowal of the basic tenets of the Christian faith.

The word “creed,” as you probably know, is derived from the Latin word “credo” (I believe). And indeed, “The Apostles’ Creed” in English begins with those two words: I believe.

I no longer recite “The Apostles’ Creed” and I no longer believe in many of the tenets of the Christian faith. What follows is a brief list of some other things that I no longer believe in.

I do not believe that the Pope is infallible. I do not believe that any executive or monarch is above the law. And I do not believe that President Donald Trump’s phone call to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on July 25, 2019, was “perfect.”

William J. Murphy