Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Hiding the Truth

Sanctioned death in Oregon is getting ugly. Without oversight of the sanctioned death program, Compassion and Choices is getting sloppy in their work. Last year two people took the lethal dose of drugs and didn't die. One of them remained in a coma for 3 1/2 days before coming out of it.

One of the two patients who awoke after ingesting the medication regained consciousness within 24 hours after ingestion and died of their underlying illness five days later; the other gained consciousness 3 ½ days after ingestion and died of their underlying illness three months later. Regurgitation was reported in both instances.

With sanctioned suicides going bad, what does Compassion and Choices do? Rather than correcting the problems leading to the torturous botched procedures, they get Oregon Health and Human Services to change the rules so they can hide how long each suicide is taking.

Procedure revision was made mid‐year in 2010 to standardize reporting on the follow‐up questionnaire. The new procedure accepts information about time of and circumstances surrounding death only when the physician or another health care provider was present at the time of death. Due to this change, data on time from ingestion to death is available for only 32 of the 65 deaths in 2010. Of those 32 patients, time from ingestion until death ranged from 5 minutes to 2.2 days (53 hours).

Allowing such cruel and unusual punishment to occur without government oversight or intervention is a clear violation of the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Washington's Suicide Law


Razors pain you;
Rivers are damp;
Acids stain you;
And drugs cause cramp;
Guns aren't lawful;
Nooses give;
Gas smells awful;
You might as well live.

Dorothy Parker

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Increasing Their Numbers

"We must increase our numbers" is the quote you hear most if you attend a Compassion and Choices annual meeting. Contributors to Compassion and Choices want to see the number of people who use assisted suicide increase.

The only reason they would want to see their numbers increase is because they have a vested interest in reducing healthcare costs at the end of life. The role of insurance companies and managed care organizations in legalizing assisted suicide is huge.

Assisted suicide grows from the premise of "every life reaches a point of diminishing returns and corporate America must capitalize on it."

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Horsesass is a Washington State blog that has been talking a lot about legalizing assisted suicide. I've never seen it write articles about disability rights but all of a sudden it pretends to be the new voice of people with disabilities.

Jesse Wendle of Group News Blog writes a post in Horsesass telling us I 1000 isn't about people with disabilities. Of course, to demonstrate his disability rights pedigree he calls us cripples. He thinks it's okay to use the word cripple because you know he's a "brother."

Jesse then goes on to call those of us who disagree with him liars. The bottom line is that Jesse is to people with disabilities what Clarence Thomas is to African-Americans.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

What is Oregon Trying to Hide?

A question often asked about assisted suicide is: "Why haven't we heard about any problems in Oregon?"

There are many reasons we haven't heard about assisted suicide abuses in Oregon and the most obvious is there is no designated agency with the authority or funding to investigate abuses.

Another huge problem is poor oversight and management of investigating suicides to determine the cause of death. Death caused by a lethal dose of drugs is classified as poisoning. If the poisoning follows the assisted suicide rules in Oregon it is not consider suicide, but if it’s not clear if it’s assisted suicide it is recorded as a suicide or undetermined cause of death.

In poisoning cases the best way to determine cause of death is by toxicology testing. Oregon is the worst state, of the 13 states surveyed, in doing toxicology testing to determine the drugs used in suicide cases according to the Journal of the American Medical Association article “Toxicology Testing and Results for Suicide Victims – 13 States, 2004.”

Sunday, July 20, 2008


Most people have experienced a controlling boss or parent and understand how their obsession to be in control affects everyone around them. People obsessed with the need to control everything have to know how you will manage every detail of all situations. There is no room in their life for natural and spontaneous events. They have to be in control.

So I'm not surprised when I hear assisted suicide supporters talk about their need to control how they die. Of course, in their life death cannot be a natural and spontaneous act... it has to be controlled. Like most people obsessed with control assisted suicide supporters want to delegate responsibility for any actions taken in their controlled and contrived lives. They want to "control" their death but want a doctor to prescribe the lethal dose of drugs so they aren't "responsible" for their death. And, they want their family to support them in their decision and be at their side as the poisons take effect and "hopefully" kills them.

Assisted suicide supporters are so fearful of being held responsible or accountable for their final actions that in Initiative 1000 it requires doctors to falsify the death certificate by citing their terminal illness as the cause of death instead of the lethal dose of drugs. Falsifying the death certificate conveniently prevents public accountability of assisted suicide making it impossible to track whether abuses have occurred.

Let's hope Washington State voters won't satisfy those people's obsession to always be in control.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Assisted Suicide Is Bad Public Policy

Marilyn Golden with the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF) outlines the public policy basis for opposing assisted suicide. Ms. Golden demonstrates the many risks posed to our society by legalizing assisted suicide.