Advocates of respect for life do not expect to let their guard down in 2018 as legislative sessions in both Maryland and Delaware are again expected to include a push for legalization of physician-assisted suicide.
Jennifer L. Briemann, deputy director of the Maryland Catholic Conference, was in Wilmington on Jan. 11 to discuss the church’s ongoing opposition to physician-assisted suicide. She taped a segment for the radio program “Catholic Forum” and was joined by Father Leonard R. Klein, Diocese of Wilmington director of pro-life activities. The diocese includes Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland.
Father Klein said advocates of physician-assisted suicide are too accustomed to getting everything they want in life.
“We live in an empire of desire. ‘I should have what I desire,’” Father Klein said. “Our lives are a gift from God. People forget that we are the steward of our life, not lords over it.”
Breimann and Father Klein agree that legalizing suicide is dangerous and wrong and the legislation preys upon people most sick, depressed and vulnerable.
“Part of the duty of the state is to protect life,” Father Klein said.
Briemann said physician-assisted suicide has been legalized in six states plus the District of Columbia. It has been introduced in 30 other states, she said. People at the worst time of their lives can be subjected to abuses and coercion, she said, and it is often difficult to prove.
“The person is gone, so how do you know,” she said.
Briemann described proponents of the suicide measure as “driven and well-funded” and said the best effort people can make to block legalization is to write their elected legislators in either state.
Listeners can hear the discussion among Briemann, Father Klein and host Bob Krebs on the Jan. 28 edition of Catholic Forum.
Catholic Forum is heard Sunday mornings at 9:05 on WAAI-FM 100.9 in Hurlock, Md., and at 10:06 on WDEL 1150AM and 101.7FM in Wilmington or wdel.com. Listen anytime to Catholic Forum podcasts at www.cdow.org/communications or search “Catholic Forum Radio” on Apple Podcasts or iHeartRadio podcasts.