DAILY CATHOLIC     THURSDAY     July 30, 1998     vol. 9, no. 148

from a CATHOLIC perspective

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO


          LANSING, Michigan (CWNews.com) - Michigan Gov. John Engler signed a new ban on assisted suicides into law on Tuesday, but the law could be short-lived if voters approve a referendum in November legalizing the practice.

          The ban, which goes into effect on September 1, was prompted by the state's continuing legal battles with assisted suicide activist Jack Kevorkian. The retired pathologist has been acquitted in three trials for five deaths, trumping an expired temporary ban as well as a state Supreme Court definition of assisted suicide as a criminal offense in common law. Under the new law, assisted suicide will be punishable by up to five years in prison.

          Michigan's Catholic Conference of bishops welcomed the new law, and warned against watering it down, a reference to the November ballot. "Any efforts to change this law will result in nothing short of the direct killing of vulnerable patients and must be vigorously opposed," said spokesman Paul Long.

          The ballot question will ask voters to allow assisted suicide in some cases, including terminally-ill adults who have been told they have less than six months to live.

Articles provided through Catholic World News Service.
CWN is not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

July 30, 1998       volume 9, no. 148


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