Originally created 03/15/03

Author of transplant editorial heartless

In response to the Feb. 25 editorial "Brain transplant needed," I would like to express how sad it makes me, an American 100 percent, that anyone could be so heartless while trying to sound sincere about the loss of Jesica Santillan.

Everyone is certainly entitled to his or her opinions. However, racist and ignorant opinions such as those expressed in that article should go unsaid. It should not matter where that precious child came from, or how she and her family got here.

The fact that her parents paid "coyotes" to make the most dangerous trip to our country should actually flatter all Americans that they saw our medical institutions as the best and only hope for their daughter.

Had they remained in Mexico, it would have meant certain death for Jesica. The fact that they wished to gain access to "our best medical care, some of the best in the world" to their daughter should be seen as great parenting.

There is no connection between how they got here or where they are from, and the "detriment of other legal residents who need help."

The Santillans do not have any of the benefits available to them such as Medicaid, welfare or any other programs that many, many Americans take blatant advantage of.

The medical bills acquired by the Santillans were paid for out of a charity fund that was set up for Jesica and other needy children - "Jesica's Hope Chest" - by a resident of North Carolina originally from Texas. The organ that Jesica received could not be used by anyone on the "Match List," and, therefore, no one was passed over for Jesica to receive them.

Although it is somewhat gratifying that Dr. Jaggers is taking the responsibility for the sloppy mistake that cost the life of a child, it does not relinquish him from disciplinary actions. The Santillans, I am quite certain, are not looking to "get rich" off the loss of their child.

Being the wife of a Mexican immigrant, and the mother of two children, it angers me that the author of that article could think that this grief-stricken family is only out for money. ...

Leah Uscanga, Lincolnton, Ga.


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