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Should We All Take Doctors’ Position?

I never expected to find myself applauding the American Medical Assn., but I must voice appreciation for its ethical stand on banning physicians from participating in executions (“Doctors’ Dilemma,” April 5).

More praise should be heaped on those physicians like Dr. Robert Jones in Utah, or Dr. Dan Cashman (formerly of San Quentin) who, in increasing numbers, are refusing to participate in pronouncements of death after executions or the ludicrous act of determining the prisoner “sane” enough to be killed.

It’s a shame that the rest of us aren’t compelled to follow their lead by refusing to participate in our state killings. For like it or not, we are all participants in the act of taking another person’s life, no matter how removed we may feel from the actual execution.

KATHRYN FORD

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Fallbrook

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Re “Doctors’ Dilemma”:

How come no quandary when it’s abortion?

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They reach inside a woman’s uterus with forceps and rip out an unborn baby, but when it is a simple injection for a convicted murderer of another innocent human being then it’s troubling because of their medical ethics.

Physicians usually try to preserve life, not end it, they say. How many executions must they participate in compared to the millions of innocent babies they kill? And this is not ethically troublesome to the AMA?

ARTHUR BETZ

Sierra Madre


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