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Society's Guilt

May 04, 1987

Concerning Beverly Jean Ernst (Times, April 17), "Mother, 26, Convicted in Death of Infant Twins": When will we stop pointing at the individual as a way to rid ourselves of societal guilt? The care of the next generation is a societal issue and not just a "mother's problem." We have a child-hating society or there would have been shelter for the twin babies. Beverly Jean Ernst is a victim of structural and societal negligence toward children, especially the children of single, poor women. Will these tragic deaths move us as a society to face the injustices suffered by the phenomenon of the feminization of poverty? For a mother raising her children alone, child care can take half her paycheck!

EILEEN O'BRIEN MERCHANT

South Laguna

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