Daily Rounds: Women Sigh More; Assisted Suicide In November; How To Qualify For Rape Exception; Finding A Job With No Teeth

Stepping Out Of A Husband's Shadow, And Perhaps Overshadowing Him (The New York Times) — "The adversity she glossed over with such poise was hers to overcome, not his; her energetic, excited performance highlighted her appeal even more than his steadfastness. She addressed the women in the audience in complicit tones. “And if you listen carefully, you’ll hear the women sighing a little bit more than the men,” she said. “It’s how it is, isn’t it? It’s the moms who always have to work a little harder, to make everything right.” Mrs. Romney, wearing a bright red silk dress, gave a tribute that was loving and generous and revealed just how much Mr. Romney owes his talented and determined spouse."

Jack Kevorkian Comes To Town. Should Mass Voters Approve Physician-Assisted Suicide (The Boston Globe) — "This November, Kevorkian comes to the Commonwealth, or the spirit of the man at least, in the form of Question 2. The ballot measure, neutrally titled “Prescribing Medication to End Life,” would allow doctors to help the terminally ill kill themselves. Kevorkian’s arguments took root in Oregon and Washington but so far have not found favor in the rest of the country. Massachusetts is thus somewhat of a test case: Is legalized suicide a trend?"

Column: How Would Women "Prove" Rape To Qualify For Romney's Rape Exception? (Reuters) — "Who's going to be the first reporter to ask Romney or Ryan how that would work? How would they implement that exception? Would a woman's rapist have to be convicted in court? How would that work, given that in most criminal cases it takes longer than nine months from when the crime is committed to catch the criminal (assuming the criminal is caught), prepare charges and reach a verdict. In fact, the window would be significantly less than nine months; it would start from when the pregnancy is discovered and end somewhere around the 16 to 20 weeks left during which abortions can be performed most safely. Or would the exception be triggered just on the woman's say-so? (Maybe that's part of what the mentally challenged Akin was talking about when he referred to "legitimate" rape.) Or would there be some kind of new quasi-judicial process falling somewhere between a full-fledged trial and a simple statement of victimization? Would each state have to set up a new tribunal to handle these "cases"? Who would be the judges or juries? What evidence would be admissible? Would there be an adversary engaged to challenge the woman's claim and whatever evidence she offers? Who would that be? Could those challenges include references to her prior sexual history? Would there be criminal penalties for perjury? And, if as the Republican platform decrees, the outlawing of abortion should be implemented via a "human life" amendment to the Constitution, would Romney suggest that language defining rape and how it would qualify for the exception also be written into the Constitution? How would he craft language establishing that a fetus that is the product of rape is not a human life?"

Hard To Grin While Bearing Cuts In Medicaid Dental Coverage (The New York Times) — "The dental benefits issue came to the forefront recently here in Massachusetts, a state known for generous Medicaid benefits. Under budgetary pressures, the state stopped paying private Medicaid providers for fillings, root canals, crowns and dentures in July 2010. But it recently decided to restore part of that coverage. Starting in January, Massachusetts Medicaid will pay for fillings — but only for those in the front of the mouth. The reasoning was that healthy front teeth were more important for getting and keeping jobs. “A lot of folks are out of work,” said Courtney Chelo, coordinator of an oral health task force at Health Care For All, an advocacy group in Boston. “If you have a gap in the front of your mouth because you had a tooth extracted, it’s much more difficult to get a job.”

This program aired on August 29, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.


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