As a truly grassroots group that neither solicits nor accepts donations, True Dignity Vermont has complete freedom to discuss politics.
A vote to re-elect Governor Shumlin is a vote for assisted suicide. A vote for Randy Brock is a vote against. It’s as simple as that.
Here in italics are the two candidates’ statements to Vermont Public Radio (http://patientchoices.org/news/vpt-gubernatorial-debate/).
VPT Gubernatorial Debate
From Vermont Public Television, Questions start at 56:20
Question by phone: Yes, this is Bob Ullrich from Charlotte. About Death with Dignity: As governor, will you sign into law Death with Dignity legislation if passed by the legislature during this biennium, and why?
Stewart Ledbetter: Pretty straightforward question. Why don’t we start with you, Mr. Shumlin.
Governor Shumlin: Absolutely, I support Death with Dignity. I’m a big supporter, and I hope that we’ll get it passed this legislative session. I want to just tell a quick story. I’ll never forget being in Ludlow, Vermont, one day, and a woman came up to me and said, “Do you support Death with Dignity?” And I said, “Yes, I do.” And she said I want to tell you my story. She said I am suffering from ovarian cancer, and I have lived longer than my doctors and my providers said I ever would. I have a husband with stage four Parkinsons, and I am his caregiver, so trust me, I need to stay alive because I want to take care of him. I know that my days are numbered, and I want to be on this earth for my grandkids and my husband as long as I possibly can. But dying of ovarian cancer is an extraordinarily painful end, and I want to be able to control my own destiny. I don’t want the government telling me how I should die. I agree with her.
Stewart Ledbetter: Mr. Brock.
Senator Randy Brock: I will not support assisted suicide. One, because I don’t believe it’s right, but beyond that, I am concerned that the state, by setting itself up as a supporter of assisted suicide, sends a potential message to many people that it’s ok, it’s alright, and indeed can indirectly encourage those, particularly those with disabilities to devalue their lives, think they are less important, to think also that others may desire them to move on with their lives, and end their lives for reasons that are not good for society. I don’t believe that society should be in a position of encouraging and listening, supporting, or dealing with Death with Dignity as it’s called, or assisted suicide, as others would call it. I do believe that programs such as hospice, I believe that intensive control of discomfort during painful deaths are things that can and are controllable by medical science. It’s a very divisive issue, it’s an issue that I think affects many people, but I think it’s an issue and a business that the government should not be involved in.