Second Thoughts MassachusettsWe are Massachusetts residents with disabilities who oppose the legalization of assisted suicide, and any support for the death of disabled people. We organized in 2012 to help defeat Massachusetts assisted suicide referendum Question 2, and have continued the fight against assisted suicide throughout New England.
CONNECTICUT HEARING ON ASSISTED SUICIDE BILL SET FOR MARCH 18
Second Thoughts Connecticut to testify before Judiciary Committee
Second Thoughts Connecticut and opponents of legalized assisted suicide will be testifying against HB 7015 Wednesday, March 18. The hearing will be in room 2C in the Legislative Office Building.
Second Thoughts Connecticut Will Be Holding a press conference on Monday, March 16 at 2:30 PM in Room 1B of the Legislative Office Building in Hartford.
For an excellent op-ed against the bill, please see Second Thoughts Connecticut organizer's Stephen Mendelsohn's piece in CT mirror online.
How to Submit Testimony
Please email written testimony in Word or PDF format to JUDtestimony@cga.ct.gov, before 5 PM Tuesday, March 17. At the top of your first page, put your name, Judiciary Committee, and "In opposition to HB 7015". Do not exceed five single-sided pages. Your testimony will become part of the public record.To testify in person, you need to be in the First Floor Atrium of the LOB between 7:30 AM and 9:30 AM on Wednesday, March 18. Testimony order will be decided by lottery. If you arrive later, you will be placed at the end of the speaker list. Oral testimony is limited to three minutes. Hardcopy written testimony should be submitted no later than Tuesday at 5 PM in room 2500 of the LOB. They would like 50 copies.
In New Jersey, the votes are still not there for Senate President Steve Sweeney to get his way.
Let's contact senators who may be persuadable to vote against the bill. A few are leaning our way, let's try to bring them all to our side!
Please send a short email using one of our talking points (listed below) important to you. Here are the key Democratic and Republican senators to contact:
Joseph Vitale – Public Health Committee Chair said he would vote no on the floor but released the bill from committee; has recently indicated he may vote yes.
Robert Gordon – Majority Conference Leader, said would vote no on the floor, but voted yes to release it.
Loretta Weinberg – Majority Leader, testified that the bill should wait.
Senator Barnes is a certain NO vote but he should receive emails etc to encourage him to speak up in the democratic caucus.
Nia Gill – President Pro Tempore
James Beach – Assistant Majority Leader
Linda Greenstein – Assistant Majority Leader .
M. Teresa Ruiz – Assistant Majority Leader
Paul Sarlo – Deputy Majority Leader
Sandra Cunningham – majority whip
Senator Van Drew, Nilsa Cruz Perez, Nellie Pou, Nicholas Sacco, Bob Smith, and Brian Stack
TALKING POINTS –ASSISTED SUICIDE IS BAD MEDICINE
If this bill passes, some people’s lives will be ended without their consent, through mistakes and abuse. No safeguards have ever been enacted or proposed that can prevent this outcome, which can never be undone. – Marilyn Golden
- Deadly Mix: Assisted suicide is a deadly mix with our profit-driven healthcare system. At $300, assisted suicide will be the cheapest treatment. Assisted suicide saves insurance companies money.
- Abuse: Abuse of people with disabilities, and elder abuse, are rising. An heir or abusive caregiver may steer someone towards assisted suicide, witness the request, pick up the lethal dose, and even give the drug -- no witnesses are required at the death, so who would know?
- Mistakes: Diagnoses of terminal illness are too often wrong, leading people to give up on treatment and lose good years of their lives.
- Careless: No psychological evaluation is required. People with a history of depression and suicide attempts have received the lethal drugs.
- Burden: Financial and emotional pressures can also make people choose death.
- Unnecessary: Everyone already has the right to refuse treatment and get full palliative care, including, if dying in pain, pain-relieving palliative sedation.
- No true safeguards: The safeguards are hollow, with no enforcement or investigation authority.
- Our quality of life underrated: Society often underrates people with disabilities’ quality of life. Will doctors & nurses fully explore our concerns and fight for our full lives? Will we get suicide prevention or suicide assistance?
For a comprehensive guide on presenting the disability rights argument against assisted suicide for progressives, please read and download the Legislative Primer.
For the latest reporting on our efforts against assisted suicide, visit the Not Dead Yet webpage section "In the News"
More frequent updates at Not Dead Yet and the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)
On Twitter, please follow the national grassroots group Not Dead Yet,the broad New Jersey coalition of disability rights, healthcare, civil rights, and faith-based groups the New Jersey Alliance Against Doctor-Prescribed Suicide, New Jersey disability rights leader Norman A. Smith, and the nationally-active Second Thoughts Connecticut and Second Thoughts Massachusetts
Important past stories on Second Thoughts / Question 2
- Ben Matlin has an op-ed in the New York Times of November 1 entitled
- Dr. Kerry Pound in the Salem News, physician's perspective
- Boston Phoenix article Killing with Kindness by S.I. Rosenbaum
- Second Thoughts steering committee member Eileen Feldman in the Somerville Journal.
- No to Question 2, editorial in the Providence Journal editorial by Second Thoughts.
- Victoria Reggie Kennedy's article opposing Question 2 entitled "We are better than that" reprinted widely throughout Massachusetts.
- Rep. Angelo Scaccia, D-Readville, vice chair of Committee on Mental Health and Substance Abuse Opposes assisted suicide
- American Nurses Association draft statement opposing assisted suicide
- Green-Rainbow party local leader Grace Ross examines the carelessness of Question 2 with lethal drugs in this article
- Letter Against Question 2, advocating suicide prevention .
- Extensive coverage on Boston Public Radio Station WBUR:
John Kelly versus Marcia Angell Part I on Radio Boston
John Kelly versus Marcia Angell,Part II on Morning Edition with Bob Oakes