Breaking: The New York Post reports that assisted suicide proponents in New York have lost their suit to overturn the state’s law. “State civil judge Joan Kenney ruled that while she was sympathetic to the patients’ plight, the US Supreme Court has already found that New York state laws prohibiting assisted suicide are not a violation of civil rights.” Judge Kenney joins Connecticut Superior Court Judge Julia Aurigemma in rejecting legal challenges to life-affirming state protections. Capitol Watch has been tweeting an article from the Washington Post which quotes C&C’s national political affairs director, parroting the conventional wisdom that “As California goes, so goes the nation.” The conventional wisdom is wrong. This just underscores how totally unsupported the claim of “momentum” behind assisted suicide is. California can continue to be its own special brand of crazy without dragging the rest of the country into its “West Coast, Death Coast” errors. Let this be a caution to anyone who thinks wasting our legislature’s time with a fourth round is a great idea.
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In our last post, we turned the spotlight on a great letter by Cathy Ludlum of Second Thoughts Connecticut which explains why we should not follow California off the assisted suicide cliff.
Today, in the print edition of The Hartford Courant, Second Thoughts’ Carolyn Newcombe has a succinct rebuttal to more praise for Gov. Jerry Brown’s decision (again, emphasis mine):
I disagree with those who think Connecticut citizens are champing at the bit to have doctors prescribe lethal drug overdoses [Oct. 14, letter, ‘End Of Life Options'”]. The well-funded interest group Compassion & Choices and the press tout Quinnipiac poll results while downplaying a Marist poll that showed a majority thought doctors should not do this, and did not see it as a government priority. Even an out-of-state advocate with this interest group acknowledged that “it appears that the electorate doesn’t care that much about it, no matter what the polling says.”
How nice that California Gov. Jerry Brown “carefully read the thoughtful opposition materials presented by a number of doctors, religious leaders, and those who champion disability rights.” These people know that no safeguards can eliminate the threat of fatal abuse, but Brown thinks it’s a comfort to have a lethal prescription nearby. It is not a comfort, though, to be fighting for your life and know that others assume you are better off dead.
Unfortunately, it seems that Brown laid all concerns aside and — from a position of affluent, Caucasian, generally able-bodied privilege — made a decision right in line with the assisted suicide lobby’s mantra of “me, myself and I.” Let’s not follow California down that road.