Editor’s note. This alert was sent out by Anne Fox, president of Massachusetts Citizens for Life, to their members in response to an article that appeared in the Boston Herald.
Just in time for the hearings on Beacon Hill tomorrow on two doctor-prescribed suicide bills, the Boston Herald ran an article on Friday which certainly supports Doctor-Prescribed Suicide (DPS). This fight peaks tomorrow at the State House but the committee will not vote for months, so please respond to this article as soon as you can. I have sent the following letter to the editor.
Letter to the Editor
Your article, which seemed to support doctor-prescribed suicide, appeared to be based on the premise that the concept is gaining ground among legislators.
This certainly repeats the talking points of the pro-suicide people but does it reflect the facts?
During 2017, 15 state legislatures have rejected bills which would have legalized doctor-prescribed suicide. Bills have been introduced in 13 other states and have passed none with most of their legislative seasons being over. The bill passed by the Washington DC City Council may be overturned by Congress this week.
The biggest blow to the pro-suicide forces came on September 7 when the highest court in the state of New York ruled there is no [state] constitutional right to assisted suicide:
“Although New York has long recognized a competent adult’s right to forgo life-saving medical care, we reject plaintiffs’ argument that an individual has a fundamental constitutional right to aid-in-dying as they define it. We also reject plaintiffs’ assertion that the State’s prohibition on assisted suicide is not rationally related to legitimate state interests.”
“…The State also has a significant interest in preserving life and preventing suicide, a serious public health problem.”
Judge Eugene M. Fahey stated that “the Legislature may reasonably criminalize assisted suicide” (1) “because to permit the practice…would place New York on a slippery slope toward legalizing non-voluntary euthanasia,” and (2) “because a right to assisted suicide by the terminally ill in circumscribed last-resort situations would inevitably expand to include persons who are not terminally ill.”
(Decision in Myers v. Schneiderman (September 7, 2017))
People who are disabled, elderly, terminally ill, poor, members of minority communities all oppose doctor-prescribed suicide. On September 17, the American College of Physicians reaffirmed its opposition to laws which would legalize doctor-prescribed suicide.
Be in favor if you wish, but please “report” the facts without the pro-suicide wish list.