Assisted Suicide Opponents Blitz California with Petitions

LOS ANGELES, CA, November 9, 2015 -- In response to Governor Brown's signing of a controversial 'Right to Die' bill, assisted suicide opponents have launched a referendum to refer the measure to the public for re-examination.

"I have counseled many patients, and it is clear that all of us will face the famous 5 stages of grief at these times, as will our families. It has always been society's responsibility to help and accommodate those in this emotionally vulnerable situation," said Dr. Mark Hoffman, clinical psychologist and spokesperson for Coalition Against Assisted Suicide. 

"Physical pain can be treated, but suicidal thoughts are a more subtle yet clear expression of 'psychological pain.' This 'alarm bell' of deeper depression must be assertively addressed. Offering suicidal patients poison in these situations is simply dismissive medicine. It is in direct violation of a physician's oath," 

Petitioners have 90 days to circulate and return 365,800 valid voter signatures by Jan. 4to the Secretary of State.

A largely volunteer effort, Hoffman said he will also be using professional petition gatherers. "We have an incredible army of volunteers that have come forward when they heard of Brown's signing, and more every day. But many have never done this before, so we want the professional assistance to make sure we do this right."

The same week Brown signed the controversial measure, he vetoed the so-called, "Right to Try" bill, which would have let similarly situated patients try medical treatments still in testing but unapproved by the FDA. "It is a cynical view of individual human beings and their situation," said Hoffman, "to dismiss and crush a person's hope by denying them access to cutting-edge and simultaneously reinforce and indulge feelings of emotional emptiness." The death measure had failed during normal session, but was manipulated into a new special session designed to address MediCAL costs.  "Nice touch from a Governor not known for his thrift. But the fewer patients for MediCAL the better, eh?" quipped Hoffman.

The suicide opponents have established a website for 'information and education on the issue':    

Hoffman is optimistic of success. "Because we share those common emotions surrounding the death of a loved one, my experience is that everyone may initially be supportive of accommodating those emotions. But when they study the facts, that support rapidly drops. 

"Indulging emotions without recognizing the full implications has always proved a dangerous course. When you are then authorizing medicine to be used to kill in order to satisfy those emotions, well that  is quite literally a deadly course."

The Coalition Against Assisted Suicide represents people of all backgrounds and faiths. We are alarmed at the very serious implications of authorizing medicine to be used against a patient. Professionals, patient's rights organizations, disability groups, churches and faith groups of all backgrounds are uniting to say, "".

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