Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Bradley Williams: Assisted suicide a recipe for elder abuse.

by Bradley Williams, Dec. 12, 2012

Fred Brewer’s Dec. 9 letter on assisted suicide refers to “exaggerated claims of abuse of people approaching the end of their lives.”

It is, however, well-established that older people do suffer abuse and that such abuse is widespread.

As for assisted suicide in Oregon, its law, by accident or design, has significant gaps that allow abuse to occur. Moreover, any studies claiming that the law is safe, are invalid. In the 2011 legislative session, state Sen. Jeff Essmann summarized the situation as follows:

“All the protections [in Oregon’s law] end after the prescription is written. [The proponents] admitted that the provisions in the Oregon law would permit one person to be alone in that room with the patient. And in that situation, there is no guarantee that that medication is self-administered.

So frankly, any of the studies that come out of the state of Oregon’s experience are invalid because no one who administers that drug … to that patient is going to be turning themselves in for the commission of a homicide.”

Assisted suicide is a recipe for elder abuse. Please tell your legislators to keep assisted suicide out of Montana.

Bradley Williams, President
Montanans Against Assisted Suicide