Letter to the Editor RTSA

I am writing this letter as a former resident of Red Wing in regards to the cartoon that was posted in the paper likening the horrendous tragedy of dumping three lives in a river to the decision to have an abortion. 

Now I understand that this was in the opinions section of the paper and that you write the disclaimer at the top that you want to publish equal amounts of opinions to provide balance. That being said, I was shocked and appalled that this was in a publication that I looked forward to reading growing up. 

As a woman who was born and raised in this community I remember hearing stories about those babies that were found. I remember feeling sad, confused and heartbroken about what would be the cause, the logic behind the decision that would cause lives to be taken. 

To see this tragedy used as a political pundit was jarring for me. I was puzzled as to the motivation behind the creation of this cartoon. Was it for satire, was it to start a conversation, or was it to make light of a series of awful events and to shame, villify  and to even possibly traumatize countless women that made the choice to have an abortion? 

The fact is, this cartoon was in poor taste, plain and simple. 

As a publication, you have the opportunity to facilitate positive discussion surrounding hot button debates such as this. As a woman in my 20s, I can say confidently that few subjects cause more visceral reactions than the topic of female reproductive rights. Making publication decisions like the one you made will only further damaging narrative and hinder any positive communication. 

I invite you to do better.

—Mikayla Wendland, Waverly, Iowa

(1) comment

Robert Crouse

Very well said. Although the paper printed a disclaimer that the cartoon in no way reflected the views of the newspaper, the fact that it appeared on the editorial page means that the Republican Eagle does support the content. The person who allowed this travesty should be fired.

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