Goodenough Gismo

  • Gismo39
    This is the classic children's book, Goodenough Gismo, by Richmond I. Kelsey, published in 1948. Nearly unavailable in libraries and the collector's market, it is posted here with love as an "orphan work" so that it may be seen and appreciated -- and perhaps even republished, as it deserves to be. After you read this book, it won't surprise you to learn that Richmond Irwin Kelsey (1905-1987) was an accomplished artist, or that as Dick Kelsey, he was one of the great Disney art directors, breaking your heart with "Pinocchio," "Dumbo," and "Bambi."

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Abigale, there's another point. The "collateral damage" in war are people who are caught in the crossfire between combattants. Nobody is going into the situation trying to kill them.

In abortion, the fetus is the target. The entire goal of the abortion is to achieve the death of that particular fetus. Fail to kill that fetus, and you get sued.


Amba, when you're sorting out in your mind the underlying circumstances of abortions, I'd like to recommend "The Ambivalence of Abortion," by Linda Bird Francke (sp?), "In Necessity and Sorrow," by Magda Denes, "the Search for an Abortionist" by Nancy Howell Lee (written before legalization -- VERY enlightening!), and the section on abortion in "Our Bodies and Our Selves." Oh, and David Reardon's "Aborted Women: Silent No More." "Real Choices" by Frederica Mattheses-Green. I'd recommend reading all of them! But if you just pick a few, maybe whatever's handy in your local library.

It's really exciting to be walking beside you on this journey!


Naaman, please don't tar all "common ground" efforts with the same brush! Yes, a lot of them are just tricks. But remember it was prolifers and prochoicers working together that got Steve Brigham to surrender his medical license in Pennsylvania.

There are a lot of things prolife and the SINCERELY prochoice can do to drive abortion rates down and protect the women walking into abortion facilities, such as exposing quacks, enforcing existing regulations, tracking "circuit riders," cracking down on false advertising (NAF, for instance, ought to be sued out of existence by prochoicers for their false promises of "high standards of care"!).


I've had 2 abortions. Both were because men had lied to me.

After the first, I had many experiences similar to yours -- the dreams, years of psychic pain and suddenly visualizing the child at the correct age, private tears 18 years later when I became friends with someone who was the same age my baby would have been, etc. I had wanted that baby, and before I was impregnated, the father had said he did too. "Let's have a family," he'd said with excitement. Then, when I told him I was pregnant, he bugged. He turned on me, and so did my family. My father said, "I'll pay for an abortion or a wedding, but if you have a bastard, I'll disown you." I caved and my wimpy, hypocritical, "pro-Life", evangelical Christian mother held my hand through the procedure (she wasn't that supportive when I had her granddaughter several years later). I still harbor regret and anger over my mistake.

Before the second abortion 7 years later, another man assured me he'd had a vasectomy and that I couldn't possibly get pregnant. Later, when he admitted his lie, he said he'd thought he was sterile. I *hated* that baby. Consulting herbal remedies for women, I read a story of a woman who used pennyroyal tea while apologizing and explaining gently to the fetus that she couldn't have a baby now. I tried to follow her example, but found myself screaming at my belly, "Get out, get out! I don't WANT you!" I kept visualizing the determined little being gripping tightly with clenched jaw -- the herb didn't work. After a doctor flushed it out for a month's worth of grocery money I didn't have, I was utterly relieved and never once felt any of the sadness and regret that I had from the first abortion (though I regretted trusting a man without his commitment "for better or worse").

I agree that it's important to share these stories. Women and men need to be aware of all the lifelong or, as I believe now, karmic consequences of sex. We need to accept the terms of consummating our desires. I have never rationalized my abortions with nonsense about when life begins. Rather, I have always believed that abortion is a special case of killing, not unlike the exceptions our society makes for combat, self-defense, and capital punishment. I accept that I killed 2 people who had chosen me as their guide in this world, and I still regret that I did so but one of those times.


I had an abortion when I was 19 even though I had always wanted a child - the circumstances are much to complicated to get into here. There was no blissful ignorance of the potential I was stunting - and every year on the day that he (yes I have dreams about him too) might should have been born, I wonder what he would have looked like, who his friends would have been, and what his and my relationship would have been like. I agree that women (and men should they ever delve into their own seeming removed relationship to a gestating fetus) should be aware that they are aborting someone, rather than nothing. At the same time, I would warn against idealizing an unknown. I can only hope that had my child been born, he and I would have had such a relationship where I am understood to be only human - and not a good samaritan upon a pedastal.


I lost my seventh child in a miscarriage.

We had such a very short time together. It is so hard to loose your child before you can hold her, before you can tell her how much you love her. I was glad that I had been so before hand that I had a few things ready for her. They were evidence of her existance - of the void that she left behind.

The consolation that I had was that we had used the heartbreakingly short time that we had together joyfully. We had welcomed her so gladly!

Is that not how we would like others to relate to us? Gladly?

If only we can learn relate to others with joy and awe and thankfullness.

As our lives unfold, we have countless choices - to love and welcome others into our lives, or to reject or even hate them.

Love increases the richness of our lives, even though it also increases our troubles. Indifference and hatred decreases us. In the most tragic cases, hatred consumes all the lovely bright potential of a human life.

But love! Even when it involves us in great difficulties it ennobles us and brings out a wonderful beauty.

Only by welcoming others into our lives, and loving them, do we become truly ourselves. Each child has brought immeasurable richness to my life. To love is to be vunerable to loss. Yet the joy of love is everlasting, while all grief ends with this life.


Trudy, I'm sorry for your loss. I'm sorry for Amba's loss and the losses of the women who feel they've not lost, but gained. I like to say that even if I never knew God I'd still be pro-life because it only makes sense to protect the child so reliant upon you. That's what the womb IS for, isn't it? And Natural Law says as much, not that I claim to know much Natural Law. It's letting Nature take it's course. Parenting isn't easy. It takes so much time and psychology :). Explaining anything to little kids does. I'm still afraid to "mark" my kids negatively. In the end, I choose to belive my life isn't just about me and how well I do. It's also about others, how we build each other up(hopefully) and support one another. I have a friend that told me she had an abortion. She knows how I feel and still told me. I don't know why. I hold nothing against her, but often think of her child__who would have been the same age as my 13 yr old. I never ask her if she thinks of that child. She now has a daughter that is two, the absolute joy of her life. Does having a later baby make you question how it would have been with first? I'm told it takes tremendous courage and bravery to commit suicide, but I think it takes even more courage to live the life we are given. I sometimes feel that abortion is the easier way out. Is that horribly jugemental of me, because that's just an observation. I think, too, that not bringing God into this discussion allows aborted women ( a term I've heard used, but does soud offense and may be wrong?) to not feel judged. As if those of us "believing" should think we have that in the bag!! I don't know about everyone else, but I'm too busy digging logs out of my eyes. I view life to begin at conception. If not implanted, It dies.

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