Sorry to disappoint you, Kathy (Kathy Miller, Forum, July 13), but you are wrong. The partial birth issue is not a medical decision, but a moral and criminal decision. Therefore, Merrill Cook is exactly right in taking a position against it.

Ms. Miller seems to think that we are discussing a normal abortion. We are not. We are discussing a situation where a birth is in process. That is, the delivery is in such a state that the child - for at this stage it is indeed a child - is only a few seconds away from complete birth. If the killing of the child is held up for those few seconds until the birth is complete, then the killing would clearly be murder.It is part of the responsibility of Congress to decide what is a crime and what is not. Is it a crime to kill a child seconds after its birth? Is it a crime to kill a child seconds before its birth? This is the decision for legislators, not doctors to decide. It is not a medical decision. If the doctor wanted to abort the fetus days or weeks before with the mother's request and permission, this would be a medical, and many of us believe even then it is a moral, decision. But when the birth has become partial, it is no longer medical, but moral and criminal, and we elect people like Merrill Cook to make such decisions.

So, Merrill, you do have a very great many moral people who support you.

Robert W. English

Salt Lake City