In response to the Sept. 20 letter regarding Rep. Chris Smith’s views on important issues, he is especially out of touch on women’s issues.
Smith voted against Equal Pay for Women, voted against the Violence Against Women’s Act, voted to outlaw the birth control pill and voted to block private insurance and flexible spending account money from covering contraception. He also wrote a bill (HR3) to redefine rape to forcible rape, which would decriminalize statutory rape. Drugged and raped, date rape and even incest of children would no longer be rape under Smith’s definition.
Smith is against a women’s right to choose even in cases of rape, incest and to save the life of the mother. He voted for fetal personhood, which would ban all oral contraceptives, in-vitro fertilization and stem cell research. It would also criminalize a women’s choice, regardless of the reason.
Incredibly, Smith has not lived in New Jersey for more than 30 years. He is not one of us nor has he shared our collective experience as a community with regard to 9/11, Hurricane Irene or superstorm Sandy. Having not lived through Sandy must be the reason Smith pledged not to support any climate change legislation unless it included a tax break for the biggest polluters, the Koch brothers. It’s nice he helped David Goldman get his son back in 2009, but that does not excuse his attack on women’s basic rights and all the rest.
This letter also appeared in the Asbury Park Press.