Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The disabililty community and the California assisted suicide bill (AB 374)

The role the disability community has played in defeating the assisted suicide bill recently in California is explored in this article in the Los Angeles Times. It comes via this post about the article by Penny Richards from Disability Studies at Temple University, which also provides links to biographies of Paul Longmore, Marilyn Golden of DREDF, Ann Guerra and Laura Remson Mitchell, who are against the bill, and Alan Toy and Lloyd Levine, who supported the bill.

The article presents the issues concerning assisted suicide fairly and clearly, and is written by LA Times staff writer James Ricci.

Here is a quote from the article by Paul Longmore (against the bill):

HMO's are denying access to healthcare and hastening people's deaths already ... Our concern is not just how this will affect us. Given the way the U.S. health care system is getting increasingly unjust and even savage, I don't think the system could be trusted to implement such a system equitably, or confine it to people who are immediately terminally ill.

And here is a quote by Alan Toy (for the bill):

If we're always acting out of the history of all the unjustices perpetrated against us, instead of the progress we've made, it reinforces societal notions that people with disabilities are victims ... I don't believe people will be looking for any tiny loopholes in the law so they can start exterminating us against our will. I don't know how they make the leap to thinking this is going to be the death of us."