Catholic Fordham University Hosts Workshops With Euthanasia Group Promoting Assisted Suicide

National   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jun 21, 2017   |   6:34PM   |   Washington, DC

Catholic pro-life advocate Patty Knap works hard to raise awareness about the growing push to legalize assisted suicide in the United States.

The Catholic Church strongly opposes assisted suicide and euthanasia, as well as abortion, because they destroy precious, valuable human lives. And Knap and many other Catholics are uniting with disability rights groups, medical professionals, pro-lifers and others to stop assisted suicide from becoming law across the U.S.

So Knap said she was extremely concerned to learn that Fordham University, a Catholic school in New York state, hosted several workshops with a pro-euthanasia group during the past school year. In contrast, Knap said she could not find a single workshop at the university that presented the Catholic perspective on assisted suicide.

In a column for the National Catholic Register, Knap wrote:

According to its web site, Fordham has hosted at least four workshops—for student credit—in collaboration with the pro-euthanasia group End of Life Choices New York (EOLCNY) in just the past year …

EOLCNY is backing the Medical Aid in Dying Act [doctor-prescribed suicide] currently being pushed in New York. The law allows terminally ill patients to request medication from a doctor to kill themselves. EOLCNY is a previous affiliate of Compassion & Choices (formerly the Hemlock Society). EOLCNY became independent of Compassion & Choices that same year courtesy of a $300,000 grant from the billionaire globalist George Soros’s Open Society Foundations.

Knap said the New York Alliance Against Assisted Suicide, an alliance of disability rights, health care, civil rights, faith-based and patient advocacy groups, offered to give a presentation at the university, but it did not receive a response.

New York state lawmakers have been debating legislation that would legalize doctor-prescribed suicide in the state. The bill euphemistically describes the deadly procedure as “medical aid in dying.” It would allow doctors to prescribe a lethal dose of drugs to an adult patient with intention to commit suicide.

An analysis by the New York State Catholic Conference states the bill lacks basic safeguards to protect vulnerable patients and adequate conscience protections for health care workers.

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Knap said she and a group of fellow advocates held an event outside Fordham last week to educate people about the bill.

“Most had no idea how one-sided the euthanasia issue is being presented to students,” she said. “We encountered many people on the street who say they support the legalization of ‘assisted suicide’ —but have no idea what is actually in the Bill … and what the real-life ramifications are.”

Knap said many different groups are opposed to assisted suicide for various reasons, including doctors and nurses organizations, disability rights groups like Not Dead Yet and the Catholic-based Human Life Alliance, any one of which could provide a life-affirming perspective on the issue at Fordham.

“One would think that even a secular university would offer at least one opposing view to four presentations all with the same agenda,” she wrote.

Society increasingly is encouraging vulnerable people to end their lives prematurely rather than receive treatment and support. Canada recently legalized assisted suicide, leading to nearly 1,000 government-condoned suicide deaths in the first year. In the United States, five states and Washington, D.C. now allow people to commit doctor-prescribed suicide. Data indicates that depression is the most common link to these suicide deaths, not physical pain.