March 7th, 2014 by Nancy Elliott
[Nancy Elliott is a former member of New Hampshire House of Representatives. - PW]
Yesterday, the New Hampshire House of Representatives rejected HB1325, which would have instituted Assisted Suicide in that state. After careful investigation representatives decided this practice is just too dangerous for its people. With one voice, Democrats, Republicans and Libertarians joined forces to soundly defeat this bill 219 to 66.
Once legislators understand how abusive Assisted Suicide is, as thinking individuals they see it is too dangerous for our society. Elder/Disabled Abuse is on the rise and this allows for a new very final avenue to abuse. Once the lethal dose is delivered, there is no witness at the death. Even if someone struggled, who would know? Just to suggest to someone that they should kill themselves is abusive! These bills promote discrimination. One group of people are discouraged from suicide, while others are encouraged to commit suicide based on age, sickness or disability. Remember almost all that are eligible for this, at that point in their lives have a disability. Also eligible people are not necessarily dying. They could have many more years to live with treatment. This would include for example, a person with diabetes who stopped taking their insulin. We must also recognize that doctor predictions are not always correct. (Jeanette Hall is alive and well after 13 years, because her doctor wouldn’t give up on her and talked her out of suicide to have treatment instead.). When Assisted Suicide is in the mix, medical care is lowered. In Oregon patients have been denied treatment and offered a lethal dose instead. For these reasons and many more Assisted Suicide is just too dangerous and legislators in New Hampshire agreed and defeated this bill in a bipartisan show of unity.
Vermont, which passed Assisted Suicide last year, is having buyers remorse at this time and efforts are under way for a repeal. Once intelligent people recognize how abusive and discriminatory this practice is, they want no part of it. I am sure the same will be true in Connecticut. As legislators go beyond the little slogans that sound so attractive, but do not mean what the words say, they will see that these are just like the old little jingles that used to sell cigarettes. As they dig deeper into the harm that these bills can cause they will recognize that Assisted Suicide is just not good public policy.