The NJ Senate could vote on the assisted suicide bill already passed by that state’s Assembly as early as January 13, 2015. We urge people__especially people from NJ, but anyone from any state who believes the spread of assisted suicide is dangerous public policy and a risk to everyone, everywhere__to contact each Senator, politely asking that he or she vote against S.382. Here, once again, is the contact information: http://noassistedsuicidenj.org/images/NJ%20Legislators.pdf.
Be brief. Be polite. Be reasonable. If you are from out of state, say you are calling because what the NJ legislature does will influence what other state legislatures do. Give your reasons for opposing the legalization of assisted suicide.
Since our beginnings in January 2011, True Dignity Vermont has had a policy of not posting arguments against assisted suicide based on religious belief, refusing to give Compassion and Choices and its various state clones any excuses for the argument they bring up when they have no reasonable or evidence based argument to make: that opposition to assisted suicide is solely an attempt by the Christian right to impose its sectarian beliefs on others.
Some religious people do indeed make statements that we understand non-religious people would find offensive and that would certainly not move them, but others make reasonable arguments that we are getting tired of ignoring just because of their sources. We believe all reasonable voices are worthy of consideration.
It is in that spirit that we are linking to an article by Richard Doerflinger, who works as Associate Director of the Pro-Life Secretariat of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops and is Public Policy Fellow of the Center for Ethics and Culture at the University of Notre Dame.
We post this article simply because it is the best concise summary of the arguments and evidence against assisted suicide we have seen recently. It can be very helpful as citizens decide what to say when they call the NJ Senators. Most of us have heard all of this before, but the article brings it together and also adds the, new to us, information that 50% of the people who used Oregon’s assisted suicide law last year were dependent on some kind of government provided insurance or had no insurance. 75% of those using the Washington law were similarly situated. Since the debate over Obamacare began in 2009 and 2010, we have heard nothing but calls for cost-cutting in these government insurance programs. In this social and economic context, how can anyone feel safe from the consequences of legal assisted suicide?
Doerflinger writes of the states that have passed assisted suicide bills: “By passing the bill, the government has selected a class of citizens it thinks are more in need of suicide assistance than suicide prevention. How enthusiastic will it be about paying for continued care for those holdouts who refuse this aid?” The answer to this question seems obvious to those of us at True Dignity. It is not enthusiastic now. It will be less so when assisted suicide is available everywhere.
Here’s the link: http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2015/01/14217/