Thank you for printing the letters of Michael Simpson and Rep.Thomas Shields, M.D., in their entirety so that I have a better opportunity to evaluate the articles and editorial that have appeared in your paper recently. It appears that Michael Simpson has done his homework regarding the Oregon law, however, at his young age doesn’t fully understand life in its entirety.

Rep. Shields’ response is well thought out and addresses the facts of life and death head-on. Some folks seem to think that it is too blunt a response to give the young man, but it appears to be proper for such a controversial issue.

As the victim of suicide of a family member I can personally attest that there is no “dignity” in suicide by whatever method is used.

In the recent past I have personally witnessed the deaths of two friends to cancer and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis as they died with dignity surrounded by family and close friends. Through hospice, medical assistance to control pain and suffering and prayer, they remained lucid to the end and went to see the Lord in a very dignified demeanor.

I have discussed a physician assisted suicide law with several of my physician friends and they have advised that they would never violate their Hippocratic oath if such a law was enacted. I am sure there are a few crackpots like Jack Kervokian out there that would like the publicity, but we can do without that.

Albert L. Godfrey Sr., Winthrop

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