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To the Editor: To the area clergy writing in opposition to Proposition 5, I would like to say I fully and completely accept your religious right to oppose abortion based on how you interpret the Bible. My commitment to your right to oppose abortion is grounded in the religion clauses of the First Amendment.

However, as a member and clergy of a religion that allows for abortion within sacred guidelines, I respectfully ask, in light of the First Amendment, that you stop trying to deny women who practice a religion different from yours the religious right to choose to have an abortion. For example, Judaism's position on abortion is based on a very close reading, in Hebrew, of the text in the Pentateuch. Proposition 5 does not force women to have an abortion. It protects their right to choose this option based on religious teachings.


Rabbi Emeritus Howard A Cohen,

Congregation Beth El, Bennington


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