Another piece of anti-life legislation permitting the killing of innocent human beings is now law in New Mexico.
On Thursday, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed a law to legalize assisted suicide, the Santa Fe New Mexican reports. Barely two months ago, she also signed a pro-abortion law that will keep abortions up to birth legal for years to come and could force doctors and nurses to help abort unborn babies.
“Dignity in dying — making the clear-eyed choice to prevent suffering at the end of a terminal illness — is a self-evidently humane policy,” Lujan Grisham said, Sight Magazine reports.
But others described the new law as the “worst in the nation,” noting how the elderly and people with disabilities could be coerced into killing themselves.
The law allows a person to request lethal drugs from a doctor, nurse practitioner or physician assistant to commit suicide. Under the law, assisted suicide is supposed to be limited to people who have six months or less to live, though doctors admit that predictions about such things are often wrong.
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The New Mexico law only requires people to wait 48 hours to receive the lethal prescription; in most other states where assisted suicide is legal, the waiting period is 15 days, according to the report.
Pro-life advocates, disability rights groups, religious leaders and others united in strong opposition to the law. They said it has very few safeguards to protect vulnerable people who may be contemplating suicide.
“… legalized assisted suicide in any form will only make it even harder for people with disabilities, people of color and the economically disadvantaged to obtain quality medical care,” said Matt Vallière, executive director of the Patients Rights Action Fund.
Vallière said the law allows discrimination against people with disabilities and pushes them toward death rather than medical care.
“At a time when legislators should be laser-focused on expanding access to quality medical care and treatment options for all New Mexicans, it’s outrageous that they have instead chosen to pass a discriminatory bill aimed at making death more accessible for those with life-threatening disabilities,” he said.
Reports and studies show significant problems, including coercion and potential abuse, in states like California, Oregon and Washington where assisted suicide has been legal for years. In California, a young mother who was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease shared how her insurance company offered to pay for her assisted suicide but initially refused to cover the expensive medical treatment she needed to live.
Archbishop John C. Wester of the Catholic Archdiocese of Santa Fe said the new law is the “worst in the nation.” Ten states and Washington, D.C. now allow assisted suicide.
“This as we struggle to dissuade our young people from taking their lives when they are struggling with depression and despondency. With these bills, I wonder, what have we become?” Wester said in reference to both the assisted suicide and abortion laws.
He promised that Catholics will continue to support people at the end of life, “providing them with hope and mercy, trusting that love wins.”
In a statement after the law passed, the New Mexico Conference of Catholic Bishops expressed concerns “about vulnerable persons possibly being affected negatively in this by either coercion or human error.”