PROVIDENCE - Abortion and assisted suicide are are both back on the
The anti-abortion lobby is seeking to regain ground it lost when
Opponents were geared up for battle last year. But the pandemic shut down the legislature.
Now all of the bills crafted by opponents of
Named for the late
Introduced several times before without going all the way, the legislation would insulate a physician from "any civil or criminal liability or professional disciplinary action" for prescribing medication "to be self-administered'' by a patient to "hasten death."
Those for and against, tend to line up on the same side of the two issues: those against abortion tend to oppose assisted suicide under any circumstances, while those who believe in individuals' right to make their own health care decisions take the other side.
In written testimony, already ,
"Haven't we have had enough problems with these new AWOKE issues. Now, you want us to approve (and probably pay for) the - right? of some (yes - misguided) man, woman or young person to selfmurder themselves," wrote James H. and
"We feel that you should spend your time and energy (and our money) on more advantageous and self productive issues,'' they wrote.
"For example, cutting...our through the roof taxes RI taxes; or, maybe helping the homeless, etc., etc. - instead of devising easier and more sinister methods of enabling people to kill themselves."
"Assisted Suicide is bad medicine, and bad public policy that puts vulnerable populations at risk. It is a recipe for abuse of the elderly and disabled,'' echoed Amanda and
"This bill would mainly help medical insurance companies not have to pay for patient care...[and] enable harvesting of body parts from patients. (again financial motivations),'' wrote
From the other side in this debate came this letter to the lawmakers from
"I do not want anyone to have to wipe drool from my chin or give me pain medication so I can 'live' longer but not be engaged fully. I want to maintain my dignity and have the option to decide how and when I take my last breath."
"It's my life and I should be able to decide how and when it will end,'' wrote D'Allesandro, who described herself as a hospice volunteer who has "been connected to the world of healthcare'' for 30 years, in both the clinical and academic realm.
"On the night before her death, she had a very bad time. In the morning, she was taken to the hospital. Given to the hospital beforehand were the documents stating her wishes, no pain and no artificial effort to keep her alive.
At the hospital, he said, he nonetheless "had to fight multiple attempts by doctors, nurses and a priest trying to convince me to keep her alive. They were pushing me to ignore her clear wishes, as documented.
"And now, my son has ALS...I am praying that he be allowed to die with dignity, the way he and his family wants."
The co-sponsors of the bill include 10
For example, the "Born-Alive Infant Protection Act" requires physicians to provide medical care to aborted fetuses that show "any evidence of life," including "a heartbeat; umbilical cord pulsation or...movement of voluntary muscles."
The sponsors of several of the similarly themed bills in this package include Reps.
Also up for hearing: a bill sponsored by
The sponsors are Reps.
This article originally appeared on
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