Yesterday, NPR and The Nation featured a pro-assisted suicide commentary by Ann Neumann. Her commentary overlooked gaps in the Oregon and Washington assisted-suicide laws. She uncritically accepted Compassion & Choices's marketing claims that it promotes patient choice for "terminal" patients. This blog presents the other side.
A Recipe for Abuse
Physician-assisted suicide laws in Oregon and Washington have gaps that put patients at risk. The most obvious gap is a lack of witnesses at the death. Without disinterested witnesses, the opportunity is created for someone else to administer the lethal dose to the patient against his will. Even if the patient struggled, who would know?