Monday, October 5, 2015

To Live & Die in CA


It's not the first time that my beloved home-state has embarrassed me...and it probably won't be the last.

On Monday, Governor Brown signed into law the so-called Right-to-Die legislation that has now made it legal for doctors in California to prescribe life-ending medication to "terminally ill" patients.

Despite being a lifelong Catholic, and a Jesuit educated one at that, Governor Brown ignored the call from the Bishops, the California Catholic Conference, and just about everyone else that I can think of, and signed this horrifically pro-death law into effect.

In a letter explaining himself, Brown stated that he "considered the theological and religious perspectives," and that he even "discussed the matter with a Catholic Bishop."

And yet, here we are, living in the fifth state in our country to accept no-fail suicide, and as a mental health professional, that's one of the big problems I have with it.

When someone makes the terrifying and fear-inspired decision to end their life, they now have a route that will work, no matter what. Most times when people fail at suicide, they are grateful to still be alive, and are inspired to reach out for the help they need to carry on. Now, thanks to Brown and all of the other loud pro-death folks, there is a legal method that works 100% of the time.

No second chances, no do overs, just death.

While I could go on and on about the value of suffering, the weakness of our culture, the throwaway nature of this movement that tosses those who are deemed to have little value aside, I'm not going to.

It's all obvious to most of us.

However, with one swift flip of the pen, Governor Brown has not only opened up the door to death for untold numbers of people, he's also sent a clear message to the suffering members of our society: you are no longer valued.

Maybe I should call my doctor...because I don't want to live in a world like that.

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