The bill "is a huge jump ...
setting up a system whose
abuse could literally mean
Deceptive names for legislation are nothing new, but this takes the cake.
Introduced by Democrat Amy Paulin in the Assembly and Republican John Bonacic in the state Senate, the bill would make it easier for terminal New York patients to get doctors to give them fatal doses of drugs.
They call it an “aid in dying” bill, but “Assisted Suicide Enhancement Act” is more to the point.
Yes, it has some safeguards: To get the deadly dose, the patient must meet with a counselor to show he or she is mentally and emotionally competent to make the fatal decision — which must be witnessed by two others, one of whom vouches to not benefit materially from the death.
New York law has long granted patients the right to refuse extraordinary measures to prolong life. But this is a huge jump — asking health professionals to provide the means to end life, and setting up a system whose abuse could literally mean murder.
It’s well worth debate — we don’t question Paulin or Bonacic’s good motives here. But the bill’s name shouldn’t hide what it’s really about.