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Legislature is way out of line

03/15/2007

To The Editor:

Many Vermonters, including myself, believe that the legislature is way out
of line in taking up the issue of physician assisted suicide.

Which of us sent our legislators to Montpelier to have them pass this? With all of the
things that we need the legislature to do, to help our awesome state thrive,
making suicide legal is not one of them! Why are there out-of-state
pro-suicide groups working hard, and spending substantial sums of money,
right now, in Vermont, to get this passed? Apparently, they came here after
being rejected in Alaska, Hawaii, California, Michigan and Maine. There are
only four jurisdictions on the entire planet that have espoused this type of
policy. There are excellent reasons for this scarcity.

Can you imagine the negative message we would be sending to our struggling
youth? Do we want to ask doctors to have to dispense life-ending
medications, breaking their age-old role and oath as trusted healer? Can
you picture how much health insurance companies would save by this measure,
lining their own pockets? After 20 years, a time-tested experiment in
the Netherlands, approximately one quarter of those people who receive
physician assisted suicide never asked for it (www.vaeh.org). They did not
ask for death yet received it! That is end of life choice?

I implore our legislators to focus on bills that are going to protect and
improve the quality of life here, in all stages of life -- and if it comes to
a vote, please vote no. Fellow Vermonters, you need to let your legislator
know that you oppose physician assisted suicide.

Joanna Turner Bisceglio

Waterbury Center

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