The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 1:00 am

GOP deceits should spur more to political action

Joyce Bentz

“A Hoosier family lost their baby who was born at just 22 weeks because they say the hospital refused to treat him due to their inability to help those born under 24 weeks. Now moms will be informed about a hospital's ability to manage high-risk pregnancies and provide life-saving care to babies.”

This is a direct quote from a recent mailing, produced by and postage paid by the Indiana House of Representatives.

There are quite a few questions to be answered about this taxpayer-funded mailing. First, when did this unidentified event happen? Which hospital refused treatment? Did this hospital have the capabilities to treat a 22-week birth? What treatment was refused and why? What is the source of this statement?

We deserve to know the facts of this claim.

The vague, misleading portrayal appears to tell us our Republican House members have just learned of a long-used ethical treatment laid out by the American College of Gynecology and Obstetrics, as early as 2005 and revised in 2019 (verification is available at

Our supermajority, gerrymandered Republican legislators are just now getting around to these standards laid out in 2005? Medical professionals have been operating under these guidelines for years.

The clinical and ethical guidelines state that doctors must advise patients of their ability to treat.

According to this document, if a patient decides on treatment for an extremely premature birth, the doctor is bound by the Hippocratic oath to honor the patient's decision.

I ask our Republican House members again: Do they know whether this hospital had the capability to treat? There is no credible source listed.

The oath also states: Do no harm. According to this document, the physician can choose to discontinue his or her treatment if the fetus is being caused harm by treatment. What wretched circumstances were doctors and this family operating under during this unsourced refusal of treatment?

During what can be called an eventful past half decade of gutting public schools and making it easier to obtain guns (gee whiz, Chicago has a gun problem), the party in power has attempted to usurp our state constitution to take powers that do not belong to it.

COVID maneuvering has Gov. Eric Holcomb and Todd Rokita, occupier of the attorney general's office, fighting each other in court. This internal party fight is taxpayer funded but is being used to get around our state's governing document.

Currently, this party is moving to take away well-established law for women's rights to health care while one can receive erectile dysfunction pills mailed discreetly to men.

Our gerrymandered supermajority House takes the time to “accomplish” these issues while Hooisers all over this state are bearing the consequences. They also took the time and taxpayer dollars to send out these continually deceptive mailings.

We are funding a party of deceit. This propaganda needs to stop.

The portrayal of an insidious act to demonize the death of a child as Democratic ploy truly is repugnant. Why are tax dollars being used for political gain?

For a party that declares its fiscal responsibility, this is not a conservative, small-government action.

I find it ironic how Democrats in this state are vilified for what the Republican Party has legislated here for decades.

Indiana has been bombarded by deceptive leadership that has seeped over us for decades. Dig deep within, Hoosiers; run for an open office in your hometown.

The change starts locally. Run for that school board seat; run for county commissioner; run for sheriff, precinct chairperson, city council, drainage board.

We get change if we have seats at the table. If not now, when?

Joyce Bentz is a Huntington resident. 

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