Readers React

The right to die: keep beliefs and votes separate

To the editor: Any legislator who lets his or her “deep personal beliefs” get in the way of making legislative decisions should resign immediately. (“Suicide bill pulled before vote, ” July 8, and “A right to die for Californians,” Editorial, July 9)

There are many Californians who are begging for a “right to die” bill to be passed and it is reprehensible that these few elected officials should place their religious beliefs before their duty as government officials.

California is not a religious state and should not be governed as such.

Chris Jacobovitz, Burbank


To the editor: Your headline writer used the word “suicide” in describing the “End of Life Option Act.”No sane person would want to assist someone in committing suicide, but this bill is not about the usual concept of suicide.

Some of us seniors would like the option to exit this life with dignity when it is clear that the end is near and medical means for saving us are exhausted. The alternative is to die after a period of extreme pain and suffering or doped up with narcotics.

In either case, the only thing accomplished is a prolonged and enhanced Medicare bill. Let's face it folks, we all die.

Larry W. Cohen, San Diego


To the editor: “Right to die” laws are nothing more than euthanasia with lipstick on it. First old, sick people. Then the disabled. It would do the progressive movement well to think for a change. These are not unfounded fears.

Sharon Vesely, Pomona


To the editor: I believe that most of the opposition preventing the bill's advancement is based on religious doctrine. A majority of Californians support this bill. Even the California Medical Assn. remains neutral, a historical first for it.

In my view, the Assembly blockade represents a step toward a kind of sharia law. Is this how we want to be governed?

Must I move to Oregon to enjoy my constitutionally guaranteed separation of church and state? I believe those of us who support this compassionate and necessary measure should let their voices be heard by those who would abrogate our hard-won liberty.

Kenneth Rubenstein, Goleta


To the editor: Why is it that the very politicians who want government out of our lives seem to think it is politically expedient to regulate my cancer-ridden body's death?

I should have a right to choose how, and when, I die. This decision ought to be made in conjunction with my doctors. It is my moral and ethical decision, not those who claim to defer to a higher power, yet want to continue to make my personal journey illegal.

Linda M. Poverny, Santa Monica


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