Oregon was the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide, with 51.3 percent of voters passing Ballot Measure 16, “the Death with Dignity Act,” in 1994 despite the Archdiocese of Portland, the Diocese of Baker, and many other faiths educating and lobbying against its passage.
The catechism of the Catholic Church states: Whatever its motives and means, direct euthanasia consists in putting an end to the lives of handicapped, sick, or dying persons. It is morally unacceptable. Thus an act or omission which, of itself or by intention, causes death in order to eliminate suffering constitutes a murder gravely contrary to the dignity of the human person and to the respect due to the living God, his Creator. The error of judgment into which one can fall in good faith does not change the nature of this murderous act, which must always be forbidden and excluded.” (CCC 2277)
In 1997, Oregonians got another chance to vote on the issue; however, 60 percent of voters rejected Ballot Measure 51, which would have repealed the Death with Dignity Act.
Assisted suicide is illegal in most states, but legalization has spread to Washington, California and Vermont, and a handful of other states are considering legalizing the practice or are enmeshed in legal cases concerning its legality.
Worldwide, assisted suicide is legal in a number of countries, including the Canadian province of Quebec, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
Oregon returned to the national spotlight with the death of Brittany Maynard, the young California woman who was stricken with incurable brain cancer and moved to Oregon in order to end her life on Nov. 1, 2014.
Last year, Canada’s Supreme Court legalized assisted suicide, paving the way for the government to introduce legislation legalizing the practice. The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops wrote in response: “Suicide and euthanasia are contrary to the most profound natural inclination of each human being to live and preserve life.”
Sunday, April 24, 2016
Physician-assisted suicides up once more in Oregon
Posted by VOCAL at 11:01 AM