Report: Some papers won’t be running next week’s ‘Doonesbury’ strips

A Romenesko reader emails: “Next week’s ‘Doonesbury’ cartoons, on the Texas anti-abortion/mandatory ultrasound law, may cause some newspapers to use “Flashbacks” instead of the live cartoons.”

I asked around and was told that the Oregonian and Dallas Morning News are among the papers that have discussed pulling the strips. (I’ve left messages with editors at both newspapers to see what they’ve decided.) UPDATE: “We thought the strips were over the line for the comics pages and won’t be running them,” says Oregonian features editor JoLene Krawczak. “We’ll tell readers where they can read them online.”

UPDATE #2: The Dallas Morning News will run the strips, and have a story tomorrow about them.

UPDATE #3: Garry Trudeau talks about the strips.

The Chicago Tribune, which pulled “Doonesbury” strips in September and February, will be running them, says associate managing editor/entertainment Geoff Brown.

Here’s what’s in the strips:

Monday: Young woman arrives for her pre-termination sonogram, is told to take a seat in the shaming room, a middle-aged male state legislator will be right with her.

Tuesday: He asks her if this is her first visit to the center, she replies no, that she’s been using the contraceptive services for some time. He says, “I see. Do your parents know you’re a slut?”

Wednesday: A different male is reading to her about the transvaginal exam process.

Thursday: In the stirrups, she is telling a nurse that she doesn’t want a transvaginal exam. Doctor says “Sorry miss, you’re first trimester. The male Republicans who run Texas require that all abortion seekers be examined with a 10″ shaming wand.” She asks “Will it hurt?” Nurse says, “Well, it’s not comfortable, honey. But Texas feels you should have thought of that.” Doctor says, “By the authority invested in me by the GOP base, I thee rape.”

Friday: Doctor is explaining that the Texas GOP requires her to have an intimate encounter with her fetus. He begins describing it to her. Last panel, he says, “Shall I describe it’s hopes and dreams?” She replies, “If it wants to be the next Rick Perry, I’ve made up my mind.”

Saturday: Back in the reception area, she asks where she goes now for the actual abortion. Receptionist tells her there’s a 24-hour waiting period: “The Republican Party is hoping you get caught in a shame spiral and change your mind.” Last panel: She says, “A final indignity.” Receptionist replies, “Not quite. Here’s your bill.”

Is your newspaper using “Flashback” strips next week? Let me know at

Amy Nelson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press emails: “Re: Doonesbury strips. We are subbing in print at the Pioneer Press and directing readers to online if they want to read them. Not appropriate for Comics pages with its mix of Garfield and The Duplex and not a great solution to move them to the Opinion pages for a week. Just made the decision a few minutes ago.”



  1. Kimpatsu said:

    “Shall I describe it’s hopes and dreams?
    I hope the character doesn’t say that, and instead uses the apostrophe correctly.

  2. onsale241 said:

    Bil Keene purposely injected religious faith into his “Family Circus” cartoons for 50 years. Why weren’t these cartoons placed on the opinion pages of newspapers? As long as they’re opinions we agree with, then they’re facts, not opinions…right? These newspapers should be embarrassed and I’m glad I get my news from other sources. They’re going out of business for several reasons, this is one of them.

  3. Anna LeRoux said:

    At the risk of actually suggesting a compromise, why don’t they put in a note stating that these can be found in the “editorials” section instead? That’s what the Oregonian ended up doing when the cartoon strip “Cathy” touched the then-sensitive topic of parental leave, and got massive numbers of complaints.

  4. MS said:

    Good call, Oregonian & St. Paul Pioneer Press. Parents shouldn’t have to preview the comics page before handing it to their kids. Those advocating for printing the comic should think about who actually reads those pages—I’m willing to bet most can’t recall the last time they did.

    I’d also take it a step further and advocate running more comics that are actually funny.

  5. Lindsay said:

    MS: I guess your ‘further step’ eliminates Garfield, so St. Paul Pioneer Press won’t need to continue their craven “protection” of the comics page.

  6. Nancy Imperiale said:

    The year 1952 called. It wants its myopia back.

  7. MPB said:

    Seems there are two issues here: 1) to publish or not; 2) the bigger issue of women’s rights, meaning, not only should they have no say in “choice,” they should not have the right to vote, to drive or leave the house for a career. Women simply are not intellectually or emotionally equipped to participate in such matters.

  8. stephen said:

    who reads doonesbury?

  9. wminot said:

    Trudeau has been a hero of mine since he took on Nixon and the war in Vietnam. As for putting Doonesbury on the op-ed page, good. It will get many more readers there than on the comics page. I didn’t know that papers still have comic pages.

  10. gotchasc said:

    It SHOULD run on the front pages of every papaer! Trudeau is absolutely right in taking on the misogynist Republican nonsense of meddling in folks’ private, personal matters and costing women who are already emotionally drained more stress and money. I hope young women and men wake up to this totally unjustifiable foray of white, right-wing male politicians into women’s reproductive issues.

  11. Anonymous said:

    This is not about protecting readers, the editors who are not using the Doonsbury strip this week are doing it because they want to protect themselves. WHat does that say about Politics in America?

  12. “Trudeau has been a hero of mine since he took on Nixon and the war in Vietnam.”

    Brave, BRAVE! Sir Robin!

  13. Bill said:

    Good grief! I’m still remembering when Pogo was published in Charleston, SC with balloons blank!

  14. james said:

    and just how many of these UNWANTED children , are the self rightious, evangelical , right wing, republicans willing to adopt ?

  15. Kids should know that Catholics , Mormons Christains, Jews , Muslims and Texas are are idiots when it comes to religion and womens rights!

  16. Draco said:

    If only Barbara Bush had decided on an abortion while carrying George. Texas, has it EVER giving the country a GOOD President? Johnson, two Bush wasters. Let’s never go there again for politicians.

  17. nuppi said:

    Hmmm. Many Arab nations have women’s rights going backwards in the name of their religious states. Compare that to what is now happening with the right wing! Will our women be wearing veils next?

  18. tim woodburn said:

    cool of you to have all this & the feedback,ill let you know if our paper royal gazette has the nerve,theyre quite brave.i dont think there are any abortions on the island,i will ask around.bermuda

  19. Cat said:

    There are one million pairs of approved couples waiting to adopt but the number of available infants is too small due to abortion to allow them to have adoptive children.
    If you have ever met a child who has been in foster care for years, you know why these children are considered unadoptable in many cases.
    Abortion is a serious decision for a woman to make. I see no reason not to require her to be fully informed as to what will happen. I remember when there was a movement to require doctors to numb the fetus before performing the abortion to spare it the pain of being dismembered. Nope, it would remind the woman that it was a human being and was in pain. It can’t scream so who cares.

  20. Bonnie Wiseman said:

    Bravo Gary!! Guts and a brain!!! Thanks for standing up to a right we won 40 years ago!!

  21. James: Will it be as many as irresponsible people squeeze out because they aren’t mature enough to understand the consequences of their actions? As soon as you can answer that question, then you can ask yours.

    Cat: So it’s infant or nothing? Mmm-k.

    One other story for those who believe adoption is the “answer”: We took a poll in one class to see if people supported abortion or adoption as a choice to “resolve” an unwanted pregnancy. Two people picked abortion. Guess what their background was? That’s right — they were adopted.

  22. Eutychus said:

    Just because something may, can, or is permitted to be said doesn’t mean it ought to be said. And the comics ceased to be entertaining immediately after Calvin and Hobbes went on permanent sabatical. Note the use of ‘entertaining’? Comics are meant to entertain, not engage. Any that do touch on hot button topics shopuld end up in the opinion pages simply for the sake of truth in advertising, as that’s the main function of newspapers anyway. Who reads them for their content???

  23. LK said:

    I see…Its okay to ban cartoons about Mohammed but………………..

  24. Varecia said:

    How many kids actually know anymore what a ‘newspaper’ is, or care if they do know? I think they should be run as towering billboards throughout the country.

  25. Heretic50 said:

    Does anyone think that comments here are going to change anything? Do you think Doonesbury will change anything? I was in Vietnam under Nixon. I read Doonesbury. The strips were funny and satirically lampooned Nixon. Did it change anything? The war continued until the majority of American citizens became fed up with Nixon’s policies. The GOP is getting bolder and more ultra conservative and they become financially backed by religious organizations and churches who hold doggedly on to their religious dogma. How to you get people who live their lives “knowing what God wants” to change these views? They can’t. It is so much a statement of who they are. Brainwashed in their faith since very young, they could no more change their minds now than a tiger his stripes. However, the irony is that their own “faiths” say God gave us all free will. So who are they to challenges God’s intentions by legislating free will out of existence. A fetus can’t comprehend pain and has no more claim to civil rights than a chicken egg. I wonder, does it feel pain when you fry it? No need to respond to this. I already know how you rationalize your beliefs in souls, life, God’s intent..etc. Don’t bother, I know you won’t change my mind just as I can’t change yours. And Doonesbury won’t either. So continue to vote Republican, it’s easier than thinking.

  26. Alex said:

    What silly twat drew that messed cartoon?

  27. rick said:

    I come from a newspaper family and remember comics from the time before Pogo, and Doonsbury is the best comic strip since then to be both funny and deeply intellectual-I will never forget when Pogo, in the 60s, said “we have met the enemy and he is us” and I will never forget the Doonsbury strip the day after Nixon resigned. For those of us who do still read newspapers, there is usually as much to learn from the comics as from the editorial pages-sometimes more. One way or the other, I for one will find a way to see these Doonsbury strips.

  28. Red said:

    “In the stirrups, she is telling a nurse that she doesn’t want a transvaginal exam.”

    Boy, will she ever be surprised when the abortionist *insists* on a transvaginal ultrasound before the abortion.

    But it’s only “rape” when it’s required… even when it’s required.

  29. Big Picture said:

    While every one is buisy squabiling over a comic strip, politicians and government take more of our freedoms. Wake up people, can you not see. Instead of fighting over opinion, we should be fighting to take back our liberties. Farging Sheeple I swear.

  30. i find newspapers quite useful.they line the bird cage floor…the sunday edition is great,considering the high cost of diapers

  31. Dad said:

    I have read some of the emotional responses to this issue and as usual many have missed the simple truth of the matter. First, The Oregonian newspaper is a business, a for profit gotta make payroll hope the light bill check don’t bounce,business. If you don’t agree with their business choice, don’t buy their product.Period. Mr. Trudeau is an artist. Anyone familiar with his work, and therefore interested in his point of view, knows exactly what to expect. But to those poor unfortunates who were caught completely by surprised by the content of his strip have a simple choice, for you see, Mr. Trudeau is also a business, if you don’t like his product, don’t buy it. Period. But for the rest of us, who do not rely on politicians or political cartoonists to form our basic belief core, our instinct for right and wrong,fair and fowl, please just allow evolution to take it’s course and soon women’s issues,freedom,and rights will return to the voting booth and you will have a simple choice once again. Shovel the shit, or shoot the cow.

  32. milky way said:

    I agree with Dad above. The folks who read the Oregonian can vote with their feet, or their greenbacks. This is much ado about nothing. As long as the government was not involved in the decision to pull the strip, it is a private, business matter. It is neither a women’s rights issue or a first amendment issue. A lot of the people posting here really need to pull their bunched up undeies out of their…..

  33. Edward Mc Brearty said:

    I’ve been a political junkie for 40 years and am always just plain stunned by the GOP being so backwards. I’ve yet to see the term “repubtaliban” used. So, I am now introducing it to the world. Please feel free to use it whenever you want. All the parallels are there between the GOP and the Taliban. Pick any topic and it’s a perfect match-on any issue! The repubtaliban party is really so stupid (closed brain syndrome), anything progressive is an abomination. If I started to draw all the parallels, it would take pages. The responses I’ll get from the reubtaliban will be the same wishy-washy comments us Dems hear all the time. Watch and see.

  34. Dick Behnke said:

    The word is comics. I don’t see anything comic about it. If the page was called sad, I say they should run it.

  35. Westy said:

    The obvious is willfully ignored. Trudeau
    would have nothing to write about if sex were the sacred responsibility of husband and wife. As long as sexual freedom reigns supreme, the abortion debate will continue to rage and the womb will continue to be a killing ground.

  36. “…The male Republicans who run Texas require that all abortion seekers be examined with a 10″ shaming wand…”

    Well to be fair, I can see where these gals might have a problem with this; after all, I’m sure that the “wand” that got them pregnant in the first place was nowhere near that big.

    Their vibrators, on the other hand….

    (Trudeau DOES know that all Planned Parenthood centers perform an ultrasound – usually Transvaginal – to determine the age of the fetus, right?)

  37. Jim said:

    when a sperm fertilizes the egg you have a baby even thou its under developed and any abortion after the fact is murder.There is NO excuse for it.If you dont want a baby USE contreception.Abortion is a lazy persons birth control.

  38. steve said:

    Trudeau tells it like it is. if you WANT to live in a state run by the so-called religious. move overseas and convert to islam.

    but it appears THAT is what the republicans want, EVERYONE to be forced to live by THEIR narrow, bigoted views!!

  39. Dave the Rave said:

    I’m not usually a Doonesbury reader, but I can certainly appreciate Gary Trudeau’s commentary. I’m middle-of-the-road politically, and I truly find it disturbing when our Constitutional rights are being tampered with. I’m not an Obama fan, but he is the only sane choice. I’ll be reading Doonesbury this week, because if a GOP moron is elected, we can kiss our rights goodbye. I’d like to remember when we had rights and not be told what is ‘morally wrong’. Use your brains people. Freedom is at stake!

  40. Alex said:

    What a bunch of cowards. YOU carry a kd you do not want or afford – The GOP s out of touch – Go womens rights and leave choice alone.

  41. Boo said:

    Wow, does the world really think I base my feelings and ideas on a comic strip?? Come on, has America slipped that low? Use you brains! If you don’t like Doonesbury…hey don’t read it! How hard can that be!

  42. Paul B. said:

    As the nation continues its swirl down the bowl. In a better world, I wouldn’t be reminded Doonesbury exists.

  43. DervilsPrinciple said:

    (Trudeau DOES know that all Planned Parenthood centers perform an ultrasound – usually Transvaginal – to determine the age of the fetus, right?)

    Well, probably not. He Trudeau no doubt believes like the rest of liberal spawn that they use Virgula Divina to determine those facts.

    You just KNOW that the US educational system has left their minds this vacuous. Their public schooling shows.

  44. DervilsPrinciple said:

    Boo said:
    March 10, 2012
    9:04 pm

    Wow, does the world really think I base my feelings and ideas on a comic strip?? Come on, has America slipped that low? Use you brains! If you don’t like Doonesbury…hey don’t read it! How hard can that be!

    I don’t think a newspaper really cares what you think individually. But in case you needed a reminder, they pulled the cartoon because they were tasteless. Decency is something you evidently don’t have.

  45. Price said:

    The fact that a bunch of hypocrites think they know what is best for you is the ultimate insult to this country. Abortion is a terrible thing. Unwanted pregnancy should be avoided at all costs.

  46. ask any women what being pregnant means and she’ll tell you she’s having a baby.cut to the chase. thats what pregnant means. abortion is just birth control. test million bucks says every women who gets pregnant and doesn’t abort has a baby.. i’ll pay up if that ever changes.

  47. mother teresa said:

    What a bunch of idiots. women are pretty smart. Let them render the decision.

  48. Susan said:

    I love it! I am SO sick of these politicians telling ME what I can do with MY body!! If I want an abortion, that is between me & God…not the father of the baby and surely NOT WITH ANY POLITICIAN! I am the one that will be raising the baby if I have it so until THEY decide THEY want to pay ALL my expenses regarding this child for the rest of its life…STAY OUT OF MY REPRODUCTIVE LIFE!!

  49. drsanto said:


    I’m amazed at the vitriol poured out on the religious, conservative, republican and males on this website; it’s like no one fitting any of these descriptors should have a right to voice their opinion or influence the law at all!

    The accusation of rape is way over the line and the cartoon itself is not fit for the “funnies”, but is more of an editorial.

    Having said that, where’s the love?

    Wasn’t there some recent appeal from someone kinda important asking for there to be less of this kind of hate-speech?

    Can’t we all just get along?


  50. Kerry said:

    Birth control doesn’t always work. And, it’s each & every woman’s decision only, no politician’s or church’s business. ONLY the woman involved!

  51. blown away said:

    I am hearing everyone talk but they are not addressing the issue. Does this kind of information be on a page where children go first. This is not a comic subject, it is a political statement and as such should be on any page but the comics. Personally I feel using the word slut and other words like that does not belong on a page where our children will see it and then start using it like Mom and dad and the policeman…. does anyone understand where I am coming from here. We do not need to call each other names, that is for people who just want to make the other person angry and hopes that it will trigger a response simular so it can keep on going. Please act like adults here, is that asking for too much.

  52. blown away said:

    I also do not believe in abortion but I believe in the rights of the women even more. I think more infomration, classess, and support for the women to learn exact what is goint to happen inside their bodies will do more to help stop abortions than any law.

  53. meyersrx said:

    This isn’t about right or wrong… it is about tolerance and that takes people who are secure in their beliefs. Obviously the right (aka the elephant party) is insecure so must eliminate anyone who opposes their views… that makes the possibility that they are wrong impossible. There is only one viewpoint then… THEIRS. It is so much easier for them to sleep at night knowing the world is secure for them. HUH? What about the other 99% of the world population? Let’s see… It is all about me, me, me. We live in the me world. They are the “ME” party. Just like they live their lives… it is about what they can get out of the system for their kind. Self preservation at its finest and most selfish. Kind of like watching animal planet, but without the cute cuddly babies.

  54. Keith said:

    When Is it right to kill a baby in the womb?

    $ 500,000,000. taxpayer dollars and 330,000
    abortions done by Planned Parenthiood last year.

    When is it ever right ti kill a baby in the womb.

    Is it too much to ask for the woman to see her baby by ultrasound and given some basic information before an innocent baby’s life is taken forever?

    Is it worth a little inconvenience. There are thousands of woman each year that endure huge regrets for having taken the easier abortion way out of a temporary situation called unplanned pregnancy.

    There are thousands of great people waiting to adopt and wouild love an unwanted child.

  55. Dot said:

    Yes, the cartoon is intense and probably will offend people… but the laws being made by the GOP against women are worse — more offensive in a real life way with real impacts. The media is owned by corporations now, corporations that do not have the country’s best interest at heart and corporations that are more business and less journalism. Overall, the media is more right wing or just trivial in its coverage — it surprises me not at all that something like this would be cut but Rish Limbaugh’s slanderous, vile attack on an individual woman would air.

  56. scottms said:

    If god made the universe the devil made religion. If god did not make the universe then there are a lot of crazy people doing a lot of stupid stuff! Rick Perry is a prime example of why the founding fathers placed the separation of church and state in the constitution.

  57. Keith said:

    Scottms: You show little evidence of having thought much about the creation of the universe or of having read much of the constitution. You will not find “separation of church and state” in the constitution.

  58. Rhea said:

    Keith – when was the last time you gave birth? Do you have a vagina? What about children? Do you have an ex wife who is raising the children you happily made with your sperm a few years ago? Are you current on your child support? How often do you see these children you think the world should be blessed with and that you love so very much? For that matter, same goes for any of you “men” out there. You “guys” should have no vote on this until you grow a vagina, and go thru childbirth, or at least, you shouldn’t.

  59. Keith said:

    Rhea: No birthing , no vagina, yes – 2 children, No ex wife- happily married 33 years, Still supporting a recent college grad a bit (accepting donations :) , See one daily the other as often as i can,

    So yes, no vagina, but I do have a heart. I do have a deep sense of right and wrong. I do my best to stand up for the underdog whenever I can.
    When there is a helpless baby in the womb
    I will stand up and lend my voice and support Crisis Pregnancy centers that do their best to save innocent children.

    Again I ask, when is it ever right to kill a baby in the womb?

  60. Rhea said:

    At what point is a “baby” a baby?

    Again I say the original decision should lie with the woman who is impregnated whether or not she decides to carry the pregnancy ( yes pregnancy – not baby) to term.

  61. Keith said:

    Any honest scientist worth his or her salt will tell you that human life begins at conception. even honest owners of abortion clinics have testified to this under oath.

    professor Micheline Matthews-Roth of harvard Med school said, ” It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception. look it up!

    please when we are talking about taking an innocent baby’s life let’s not play word games about calling it simply a pregnancy.

    I sense you are above that!

  62. Over Opinionated said:

    First of all, when a man can give birth, then they can have a say, but not Until then. This is a woman’s choice to make.

    It’s ok then I guess for guys to tell women they love them, they want to be with them, get them pregnant then run out on them. Leaving them with the responsibility of raising a child they can’t afford. Then you hypocrites complain about the woman being on welfare. Well then…step up and be MEN and either take care of your kids or keep your damn pants on.

    By the way, unwanted pregnancies are NOT just the woman’s responsibility. If you men don’t want children, then use a condom, or make sure she’s on birth control. Or better yet, just don’t have sex until you are ready for the consequences.

  63. Over Opinionated: If you threw out your first two sentences, then you might have something.

  64. Sandra Johnson said:

    Rhea, of course men have the right to fight for the unborn. We should all be for at least the basic decency of informing the woman just how developed the child inside her womb is and it should not be easy to end a life. The woman should know that abortion increases her risk of breast cancer,that some may loose fertility, may die themselves, have mental trauma, etc. Abortion hurts women!!
    I have given birth twice, and know that little fetus was a human the whole time. Was pregnancy easy? No. But it only took up about 3% of my 56 years to have two children. That is not much of a sacrifice! I chose to raise them with my husband, but could have given them to a childless couple if I had been unable to care for them.
    WE elect the men AND women who are to represent us. It is their JOB to deal with issues such as abortion. Us women should be taking control of our bodies and not have sex if we don’t want babies! If our birth control fails, deal responsibly with it and LET THE BABY LIVE.

  65. Keith said:

    Over opinionated:

    I agree with much that you have to say. I disagree that as a man i have no right to an opinion, nor do I have thye right to express it or seek to advocate politically for what i see as right.

    I do not have to live in Uganda to have outrage over the murder of children in that counrty. They do not have to be my children for me to have the right to speak out against this terrible moral wrong.

    You have mentioned several wrongs and hurtful thing, betrayal, abandonment, hurt and pain. That is awful. But it doesn’t make committing further wrong OK.

    Because a boyfriend is a jerk doesn’t make it OK to kill a child. Why should the innocent child pay for the jerkiness of his or her father?

    When is it ever right to kill a child in the woumb?

  66. Alex said:

    Who gives a shit about cartoons no one reads, in papers no one buys, for ideas, most of our American idiots can’t understand…pffft, it’s 2012 we got the internet, all the news, fit to read for free. Let the republican idiots, rape their republican constituents, by the time half of you dimwits read this and scratch your privates, you’ll forget all about it. If your success in life is a reflection of your intellect why do you care about petty laws for petty people. Pathetic, you, the republicans, ….and papers…buy papers, wipe your asses with them.

  67. Sandra Johnson said:

    Over Opinionated: A woman has control over her own body. Sure, I can agree with that. SHE SHOULD HAVE CONTROL OVER THE FETUSES BODY, OTHER THAN TO PROTECT IT!

  68. Sandra Johnson said:

    Over Opinionated: A woman has control over her own body. Sure, I can agree with that. SHE SHOULD NOT HAVE CONTROL OVER THE FETUSES BODY, OTHER THAN TO PROTECT IT!

  69. Alex said:

    Sandra Johnson, you need to disconnect, … and not just from the internet, nobody gives a shit what a sow like you thinks. From the sound of your intellect, your contribution to society with your two pregnancies is a question we’ll leave to standup comedians. Keep your wrinkly ideas to your wrinkly self. Your constant reposting is a warning signal to the rest of us, that stupid people are not friends with technology.

  70. Over Opinionated said:

    Sandra Johnson, well then I’ll tell you what, every time a woman goes in for an abortion, make sure they have your number, and start the adoption process. Hope you’re wealthy, you’re going to be raising a lot of children.

  71. Keith said:

    If you use the logic that a woman should have total and ultimate control over her own body, then I say , what about the little woman in your womb.

    Isn’t it her right to have control over her own body. Would you take that away from her along with her life?

  72. Over Opinionated said:

    Oh yeah, and Sandra, I have 3 kids…have never had an abortion in my life.

    But I also have family that have been abandoned by men after they promised them the world, got them pregnant and took off. They pay no child support, the courts threaten jail, but it never happens. And they get ridiculed for being on welfare, even though they have jobs. So do I think men have a right to have an opinion on this subject? NO!!

  73. Keith said:


    There are tons of couples who want babies.

    They are travelling the globe because there are not enough babies available to adopt in the USA.

    There are hundreds of Crisis pregnancy centers accross the US set up to help mothers in crisis situations.

    Pro Life people invest their time and money
    to help these women.

    Pro abortion folks force the tax payer against their will to fund abortion clinics.

    Someone like Sandra (I have no idea who she is or where she lives) does not deserve to be attacked, but thank for a very clear and compassionate post from a woman’s viewpoint on the precious life of an innocent.

  74. Over Opinionated said:

    My point is Keith, this is OUR CHOICE! Would you like it if the government suddenly stepped in and said “hey, we’re now passing a law that states that when a man reaches the age of 30 they are required to get a vasectomy”? Would that be alright then?

    Our freedoms are slowly being taken from us, not just women in general but all of us as a country. This is just one more step on that ladder.

  75. Keith said:

    Overopinionated: I really do understand where you are coming from. But i belive you have really bought into a huge lie.

    First let’s really agree that vasectomy and abortion are not equal. Taking an innocent life is not the same as a forced medical procedure. just not in the same league.

    The issue is not choice. That is the red herring that is trotted out by the pro abortion crow. Hijack the word and it softens the reality that a life is being brutally ended.

    What about the baby’s choice? if the issue is choice , what about the little girl being grown in her mother’s womb.

    You know who were the first pro choice folks in the country?

    Slave owners. It was all about their right to choose. Blacks didn’t choose slavery. babies don’t choose abortion!

  76. Keith said:

    Over Opinionated:

    To take your point about lost freedom, can’t you see that abortion is the ultimate act of taking away someone’s freedom.

    I still ask the question- When is it ever right to kill a child in the womb?

    Please consider this question.

    You really don’t want to be on the wrong side of history when it comes to the abortion trajedy.

  77. Over Opinionated said:

    Again Keith, my point being that you would be having a choice taken from you if you were to have a forced vasectomy.

    We’re obviously not going to agree on this subject, I refuse to budge on my belief of freedom to choose.

    What if the child were going to be a vegetable and needed 24/7 care it’s entire life? What if giving birth were going to endanger the mothers life? What if the woman actually was raped? Who is going to adopt that handicapped child and really what kind of a life is that anyway? Should the woman risk her life to give life to another? And would you want to look at a child every day of your life that was going to remind you of how it was conceived? And even if the rape victim did give the baby up, should she have to go through a pregnancy and labor for something she didn’t want in the first place?

    There are so many variables to abortion. Taking away the RIGHT TO CHOOSE gives women no options. where I think that I have given you the wrong idea is the whole abortion as birth control thing. I do not believe it is a form of birth control. However, what I am standing up for is the right to choose what to do with my own body should the circumstances ever occur. I have 2 daughters and god forbid either of them ever have to go through any of the things I just mentioned. But I will stand up for their right to choose if they should.

  78. Ralph Pierro said:

    Good-Another nail in the newspaper coffin and welcome back Donesbury. This piece of crap just made me realize how much I missed you and why I don’t need a newspaper. What else is big brother GOP going to aattemp to control?

  79. Keith said:

    Over Opinionated:

    I agree that changing one’s mind is a difficult thing.`

    You have also raised difficult question/circumstances.

    Former Surgeon General C Everett Koop said that in his long carrier as an obstetrician he had never seen

    a case where a woman needed to have an abortion to save her life. It is incredibly rare.

    Also incredibly rare is pregnancy by rape. The woman’s body fights this.

    Only a few states keep statistics on this, but the ones that do report thast it is very rare.

    pro abortion folks trot out these scenarios like they were the rule, rather than the rare exception.

    The truth is that victims of rape often choose to keep their babies and heal emotionally much better than do women who abort.

    Women are suffering tremendously as a result of buying into the holy grail of the radical women movement- abortion.

    Their are many variables-yes. One constant . An innocent life is brutally ended.

    I pray that your daughters would not ever face this decision. I also pray that you would have the wisdom to counsel them to face their responsibility.

    Sacrifice their own convenience for a period of time, and enjoy the peace for a lifetime that they did the right thing, rather than suffer guilt and pain

    brought on by the nagging memories of this irreversible choice.

    Sorry to be so blunt and real, but I can’t view this in a sanitary ‘choice’ , my rights, etc kind of way.

  80. Keith said:


    I will wait a bit for your reply if you send one out.

    In light of day light savings time I will be calling it a night.

    Thank you for your respectful discussion.

    This is certainly an important issue filled with emotion.
    I do hope you felt respected even though we differ greatly on this issue.

    Best to you and your gals.


  81. Over Opinionated said:

    Of course you can’t view it that way, you’re a man. This issue doesn’t effect you or your body directly so it’s impossible for you to see it in a woman’s point a view.

    For the record, when there is an egg present in the uterus, and sperm penetrates that egg, there is a pregnancy. Most rapes go unreported. Rape victims feel ashamed like they did something wrong. So they go on with their lives and just live with it. It’s only “rare” because most are unreported.

    Why should a woman have to “sacrifice her own convenience”? So 9 months of pregnancy and labor followed by either 18 years of raising a child or an adoption process….or as you put it “facing their responsibility”…for a rape victim? That’s what you believe? What about the responsibility of the person who raped her? Where’s that come into play?

    The only thing that women are suffering from are men trying to tell them what they can and can’t do with their bodies. Just another way to try to put us all back in our kitchens bare foot and pregnant.

  82. SDHarms said:

    If this is all about “women’s right to choose” and “control of their bodies” and “men should have no say” — then do away with all the “dead beat dad” laws and requirements for child support for children born out of wedlock. You cant have it both ways.

  83. EPSG said:

    One thing to consider given the idea that at the moment of ‘conception’ something is a ‘baby’. If we extend that logic further – at the moment sperm or an egg is created it in essence is has potential to create life and thus could be called life itself. In this case, it seems we really should be preventing any kind of birth control – eliminate any choice for someone to have a vasectomy or tubes tied.

    Lets go one step further – if a man masturbates then he is in-fact killing potential life given sperm die quickly in the presence of air.

    To be specific to a comment earlier – scientists would not universally agree ‘human life’ begins at conception. It is not until the stage of blastocyst implanting in the uterus when a ‘pregnancy’ would occur. At that point an ectopic pregnancy could occur which does threaten the life of the mother – this occurs in approx 1 of every 50 pregnancies (for those who said pregnancy threatening the life of a mother is rare it is not so rare – there is no way to take a ectopic pregnancy to term so every 1 of these are ended in some manner.

    To consider further – if we really want to drive this to the ultimate state of choosing the blastocyst over the mother or father then the following should be done

    1. Make it illegal for anyone over the age of 35 to have a child as the risk of miscarriage (thus ending the life) increase dramatically

    2. Illegal to consume caffeine if pregnant as it increase the chance of miscarriage significantly

    3. Illegal for any women to exercise (except swimming) during the first 18 weeks of pregnancy due to significant increased miscarriage risk

    4. Illegal to smoke or drink alcohol if a women is pregnant due to increase in miscarriage

    5. Illegal for any women determined to be obese in terms of BMI to become pregnant due to increase risk of still birth

    Etc – for Men it tends to be all about sperm quality – which interestingly is most affected by pollution and quality of the environment. Makes you wonder why Republican men are not also extremely interested in the environment as it dies very closely to views on anti-choice.

  84. drsanto said:

    Alex~ what you said to/about Sandra is horrible.

    Calling her a sow and generally degrading her publicly is not the tactic of intellect, but of an irrational and abusive personality.

    She (and the hundred+ millions of others in the country with has a different opinion) have a right to it, whether you agree or not.


  85. patricia said:

    I think goverment should stay out of peoples private business . Weather it be birth control or whatever else it deems it has a right to. I thought this was the US. Not the USSR

  86. Anonymous said:

    This is news—____ publish!I am therefore my rights my choice is Mine alone!!!!!

  87. scottms said:

    Keith, the constitution states “congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion”. The supreme court agreed, based on the writings of Jefferson and other framers of the Constitution, that the intent was to build “a wall of separation between church and state”.

    I submit that is you who has not thought in depth of the creation of the universe. The possibilities are endless and not bound by the teachings of any of the myriad of religions. Thus none of those religions should be allowed to declare how those not of their respective cults should live or think.

  88. Keith said:


    If you have something solid to say, then say it. Your first post came out of the blue with a nonsense ‘if… then’ statement. You clearly have an axe to gring against religion. Calling people crazy and stupid really shows the shallowness of your argument.

    An honest reading of the founding fathers does not support what you would call a separation of church and state. It is used so often as an argument in favor of the modern concept that vast numbers of people think the term ‘separation of church and state’ is actually in the constitution.

  89. Ray said:

    When the prolifers agree that all pregnant women and children under five should/will have free healthcare then they can call themselves pro-life rather than pro-birth. The US is 42 in under five mortality, 22 in maternal mortality, 20+ in infant mortality. At the bottom for all OECD countries. For the wealthiest country in the world why??

  90. scottms said:

    @Keith. My initial post was short and succinct reflecting the fact that politicians, such as Rick Perry, who abuse religion to control their constituency, drive the abortion debate. People trying to maintain power have learned that the populace can be controlled through fear and ignorance. “Do as I say or rot in hell – and by the way 15% goes to the church”, is an effective argument. Santorum called the funding of higher education a war on religion and vowed to home-school his children. The Taliban destroys schools that educate women.

    From the crusades, to the Spanish inquisition, to the Salem which trials, to the enslavement of native Americans by the Catholic missions, to the sexual abuse of children and nuns by the priests, to the Mormon church funding proposition 8 in California; salvation is the excuse but control is the aim. The pope still decries the U.S. gay lobby and threatens excommunication, and therefore eternal damnation, for politicians who do not toe the line.

    I don’t want a Muslims telling my daughter that she cannot go to school. I do not want Christians telling my daughter that she must have a baby if raped. I do not want Buddhists telling me I must be vegetarian. I do not want ANY religion running my life. Your freedom of speech stops at the end of my nose. Your freedom of religion stops when it tries to control my mind and body.

    That is why I support the wall between church and state. That is why I see Perry’s “wand of shame” to be the same tool as Egypt’s “virginity tests”. It is not about morality or when life begins. It is all about control.

  91. Frank Hunter said:

    I agree with the anti abortion groups. Stop abortions and do what God intended, let the foetus grow to manhood, and be killed legally in warfare while defending anti abortionists.

  92. binnie Williams said:

    I HAVE had an abortion, just like millions of other women. I have also given birth to three children I raised, raised three step children, and fifteen foster children – because I believe in the right to life; that those who are living have the right to a life that has quality. Every one of those foster children had a living parent within a 150 mile radius, none had seen that parent in two years or more, all had been abused, and couldn’t talk about anything but “when I go home to mom” or “to dad”. Where are all you “right to lifers” after the child is born? As for Doonesbury – why is it so frightening to have some words on the comic pages? It’s not like naked bodies or pornography. If your children are old enough to understand it and you disagree with what’s said it’s a wonderful opportunity to discuss your views with your children. Or was it MY children you are intent on protecting?

  93. At this point, people are just making silly proclamations and foolish comparisons. The “if this is right, then this MUST be right” statements are without logic. It’s a sad state of affairs if this is how people think complex issues should be decided.

    The problems go all the way back to people who think there are no consequences for risky behavior. Until that pattern is called out for what it is, this conflict will go on and on.

  94. Keith said:

    Binnie: I applaud you for being part of the solution to an incredible problem. I am surprised that you try to bolster your argument with such weak and uninformed cliches. Pro life people adopt children support pregnancy centers that support moms before and after birth. Have founded many youth homes (google:’Covenant House’ for just one example of the hundreds nationwide).

    George Clooney was clear when asked about the support for his humanitarian work overseas. Conservatives were in the fight with him, not the liberals. George by the way is no conservative. Liberals rant and whine, conservatives put their money where their heart and mouth are.

    Nobel peace Prize recipient Albert Schweitzer (1953)said, “If a man loses reverence for any part of life, he will lose his reverence for all of life.”

    Definitely prophetic. Why? Since 1973
    Roe v Wade), when abortions became legal, child abuse has climbed 800 percent. This in the context that there are 30 million fewer children in America now.

    Since this is after abortion was made legal
    you would think these were all wanted children. You would be pretty much correct.

    In every major child-abuse center, the data collected of families who have been identified as abusers indicate that the vast
    majority ‘wanted’ their children. ‘Wantedness’ ranged from 91% to 96% depending on the study.

    Child abuse won’t stop, or even be slowed, by pushing a pro abortion agenda. In fact studies indicate that child abuse is more frequent among mothers who have previouly had an abortion.

    Abortion not only increases the rate of child battering now, it will increase the tendancy to batter and abort in suceeding generations.

    As for Doonsbury- I think it is a wise decision to recognize that this doesn’t belong in the comics. Most newspapers have op ed sections. They can push the limits there if they so chose. Very few 5 and 6 year old new readers who flock to the funny page to test their new found reading skill scour the op -ed pages. Calling Republicans rapist is just literary pornography. You Dems would be crying out if the shoe was on the other foot.

    But be clear this Doonsbury thing is a side show compared to the abortion issue.

  95. A. said:

    Republicans want the government to retreat from people’s lifes into womens’ vagina. the biggest task for the unlikely next president Mr RickRomGing will be to stare between the legs of a women!!!! incredible.

  96. outdoorsgal said:

    Well, to my recollection it seems the Democratic party can lay claim to that dishonor literally. It seems a certain bubba got caught red handed at that. So your not so witty comment seems just a little bit hypocrital wouldn’t you say?

  97. Anonymous said:

    It seems no one will agree with each other – fair enough. The fundamental issue still seems to be why it is ok to legislate personal medical decisions which I am still not convinced of as it is a slippery slope.

    When and where is the line drawn? Where is your line? Your gun, your body – one takes a life one gives – peoples’ views here often confuse me as the conflict.

    As a Buddhist myself, I see religion as the single greatest cause of suffering and death on this earth. It constantly amazes me that such black or white thinking creating such animosity towards your neighbor can exist in a modern society founded on acceptance of all.

    In our religion, though some can debate, ‘moral clarity’ such as the right or wrong of any single issue is considered dishonest and lazy. There is so much at play that you cannot simple claim this is right and that is wrong – especially in this case.

    It is most important that people recognize the disparity that exists between ethical theory and actual practice. While I would not condone taking a life, I also advocate understanding and compassion toward all living things. Such a view requires you to be nonjudgmental and respect the rights and freedoms of human beings to make their own choices.

    To understand this and the underlying concept and impact requires more then can be expressed in a simple comment nor can one understand it in terms of black or white.

    You may agree, you may not. More then likely many will attack this as simplistic rather then consider the complexity of the belief. More then likely many will take this concept to an extreme of black and white and again miss the point. Such is the nature of things.

  98. Jake said:

    So the bottom line here is, in texas it’s considered unconstitutional to mandate people have health insurance, but mandatory to make certain medical decisions for them.

    Hey georgec – send me that check for $1 million. Heck, send 5 – wife had five spontaneous miscarriages over the years.

    You really shouldn’t make such blanket bets.

  99. Harold A. Maio said:

    On religious grounds in some countries women are not allowed to be seen, must wear black tents as they walk around. A similar tent hid the kidnapped Elizabeth Smart in this country.

    Where religion dictates law, people suffer the laws of that religion. Never has our country been free of the influence of religion in its laws. Though we are not directly ruled by religion, its influences have never been absent from congress or the US Supreme Court.

    “Given the opportunity I will force my religious beliefs on you” has long been the practice here.

  100. Anonymous said:

    Run the dang thing! It’s brilliant, not to mention spot on!

  101. Rita: Great job! too bad some papers are wimping out and not running the Doonsbury cartoons, but let’s applaud Gary Trudeau (who I think of as Jane Pauley’s husband) for writing them!

  102. horsegal said:

    Keith: You said “In every major child-abuse center, the data collected of families who have been identified as abusers indicate that the vast
    majority ‘wanted’ their children. ‘Wantedness’ ranged from 91% to 96% depending on the study.

    Child abuse won’t stop, or even be slowed, by pushing a pro abortion agenda. In fact studies indicate that child abuse is more frequent among mothers who have previouly had an abortion.

    Abortion not only increases the rate of child battering now, it will increase the tendancy to batter and abort in suceeding generations.”

    There is no way that you can link abortion with child abuse unless you ignore other, more closely linked factors simply in order to support your argument. The causes of child abuse are myriad, ranging from mental illness, post partum depression, to substance abuse, but a larger common denominator than abortion is poverty. The stress that poverty places on mothers, single or married, can not be understated. There is however, a direct correlation between poverty and the number of abortions a woman is likely to have. So you are in essence using the statistic backwards in order to create a point that doesn’t exist.

    In the interest of full disclosure, I have had an abortion. I was using birth control and it did fail. I was not in the financial condition or phase of my life to provide a child with a stable home or family. I feel no guilt and no shame in requesting a medical procedure to dislodge a blob of cells. I knew full well what I was doing. I can pretty well recite the stages of fetal development and know what they look like at each phase. I have educated myself on the process of contraception, gestation and abortion. The actions that have been placed into law in Virginia and Texas are not intended to educate women. First of all, if that is the case then the assumption must be that women are incapable of educating themselves, which I find to be the most paternalistic and insulting view of all. If education of women was the focus, it would be a priority before women reach the stage of seeking an abortion. Instead Texas focuses on abstinence only sex education and minimizing poor womens access to reproductive controls. This cartoon strip is political commentary and spot on.

    I took responsibility for my life then in order to assure that the three wonderful girls that I did choose to have are cared for and provided with a potential future that any earlier child would not have had access to. Had I carried an earlier child to term, the girls I have now would not exist.

    On another note, I think you missed one of the points that Binnie was trying to make. There are plenty of kids waiting for adoption, but because they are not perfect or have problems they are considered unadoptable. Since that is the case, the pro-life argument about there being plenty of people wanting to adopt should actually be that there are plenty of pro-life people that want to force you to have a child in order to have a greater selection to choose from so they can get a perfect child, not just a child.

  103. Keith said:

    Horsegal: Work deadlines. Will answer you fully on Friday. :)

  104. carolyn a gaio said: