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ND Right to Life panel reflects on notion of a pro-life world

| Friday, November 18, 2016

The Notre Dame Right to Life Club hosted its final panel on a holistic vision of a pro-life world Thursday night in Geddes Hall.

Suzy Younger, a certified fertility care practitioner, opened the panel by discussing women’s health care. She works in a clinic which provides various reproductive services to women, including fertility management, tracking the progression of pregnancies and helping women reverse chemical abortions.

“The other thing we can do is help women heal from issues they didn’t even know they were suffering with,” she said. “This is the case of a young, just recently college-graduated woman who was engaged to be married and wanted to learn to chart to avoid pregnancy. She thought everything was okay — just wanted to learn to space pregnancy — and I started seeing this [excessive menstrual bleeding] and said ‘You need to see a physician.’”

Professor Carter Snead, the director of the Center for Ethics and Culture, discussed the legalization of physician-assisted suicide and said it should not be legalized. He discussed the New York Task Force on Life and the Law, proposed by Governor Mario Cuomo, to research whether physician-assisted suicide should be legalized.

“ … [Cuomo] composed the panel almost entirely of people who were at the outset conceptually very sympathetic to the notion of legalizing assisted suicide because they thought that would be the best thing to do as a policy manner to operationalize a strong sense of autonomy,” Snead said.

“They reported back to Governor Cuomo and said ‘We think that under no circumstances should the state of New York legalize physician-assisted suicide and the reason is not because we’re not sympathetic to the arguments from autonomy, the arguments from compassion,’” he said.

Snead said the panel said they believed the side effects of legalizing physician-assisted suicide would harm the most marginalized of society.

“‘It’s because the collateral effects, the side effects for the weakest and most vulnerable — for the elderly, for the stigmatized, minorities, for the disabled and for the poor — would be devastating.’”

Following Snead, Professor Margaret Pfeil, from the Department of Theology and the Center for Social Concerns then discussed prison reform and restorative justice from a theological lens.

“So what would be a more merciful system, rooted in God’s love, look like?” Pfeil said. “And for me, I think a restorative approach to justice is actually pretty promising.”

Professor Paolo Carozza, director of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies discussed international development and helping the poor abroad. He said a pro-life vision of development needs to acknowledge the value of human life and consists both of individual development and community support to help others develop.

“So you see that by saying ‘What does a comprehensive worldview of life look like?’ it’s not just saying ‘Let’s dedicate ourselves to solving the problem of global poverty,’” Carozza said. “It’s doing it in a particular way that puts the person at the center of development.”

Professor Laura Hollis from the Mendoza College of Business discussed the public and private aspects of civil engagement.

“If we focus exclusively on the law, prohibiting things we find offensive, then I think we’re going to lose the argument,” Hollis said. “So the more important engagement in my opinion is the private engagement.”

Hollis said students need to support those who are facing life issues in areas the law cannot affect.

“What need to be doing is saying ‘We need to be there to provide resources for those that are coming up. We need to provide resources to those that are dealing with a problem pregnancy or an unwanted pregnancy.’ … These are not situations that the law can deal with at all.”

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  • Bradley Williams

    False advertising disqualifies non transparent Prop 106 and DC’s bill as they simply allow forced euthanasia. The Colorado promoters of assisted suicide are guilty of false advertising. Their bills do not deliver as promised. If they are really supporting individual choices and rights they would provide an ordinary witness to the self administration of the lethal dose. Without a witness they are allowing forced euthanasia. I learned after caring for my wife’s last 18 months of declining autonomy. I learned that you can work on 4 hours sleep. I am focused on how this Prop 106 is written, it’s omissions and how it could be administered to my wife.
    Colorado Prop 106 provides no ordinary witness to the “self-administration of poison”.
    Even as the promoters have inundated us with their chant that the lethal dose “must be self-administered” and mentioned it 9 times in their 11 page Prop 106 they do not provide an ordinary witness to the act. That omission effectively eviscerates all of the so called safeguards. The difference between having a witness to “self administration” and no witness is that one honors individual rights and the other is non voluntary euthanasia. A promoter was once asked “why don’t you just legalize euthanasia?” He said “the public is not ready to accept euthanasia.”
    The process seems to be full of requirements on the front end up until the script is written. Then an heir can pick up the script and administer it without oversight. Know that only 2% of the doctors have attended these events in other states.
    Even the front end “requirements” have fatal flaws. A predatory heir may be a witness to the initial request along with a staff member of the facility. Does that sound like good public policy?
    The rest of the family is not required to be contacted. And everyone involved gets instant immunity. The death certificate is falsified by this law which makes it impossible to prosecute a murder when the death certificate states the underlying illness is the cause of death. There really is no transparent reason not to post poison as the cause.
    This bill Final #145 Article 48 provides that a predatory heir can facilitate the signup process, murder the individual and receive immunity all before the rest of the family is notified. This is neither reasonable nor prudent public policy. This is dangerous public policy that puts the entire population (all ages) at risk of exploitation by the medical-industrial-complex, organ traffickers and predatory heirs.
    I encourage people to read the Oregon model bill before taking a, or expounding on their position. We will agree no matter our starting position that this Prop 106, DC’s and all other Oregon model laws/bills do not deliver.
    This bill is not the one.
    Respectfully submitted,
    Bradley Williams
    MTaas dot org