Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Suicide In Oregon Spikes Following Legalized Euthanasia

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The Seattle Times editorial board met with candidates Dino Rossi and Patty Murray a few days ago. The Times board said they will decide which candidate to endorse after reviewing the interview. Why am I thinking that decision may already be made? I have linked the entire 1 -hour plus video interview. The first 5 minutes gives a clear picture of the differences between the candidates.

After decreasing in the 1990s, suicide rates in Oregon have spiked to 35% above the national rate---and that number does not include an additional 10% "assisted" suicides that have been redefined legally as "not" suicides.

While there may be other contributing factors, one cannot be ignored; the so-called "Death With Dignity" that became law in 1995. But the state does not even mention it in their
press release, titled, "Rising Suicide Rate In Oregon Reaches Higher Than National Average."

The state is so concerned, or embarrassed, they are now making recommendations as to how to reduce the number of "counted" suicides, including removal of guns from certain homes.

Washington State is traveling the same path, just a few years behind in the creation of a culture of death.

The state's recommendations and their moral authority to do so, is questionable, at best.

When Oregon first passed their assisted suicide legislation, for several years, published warm, empathetic reports of how people had been helped with an, "I told you the sky wouldn't fall like the people of faith and conservatives said it would" tone.

Many of the same arguments and affirmations were used a decade later in Washington to pass a similar law.

But over time, decisions have consequences.

Now, Oregon is expressing concern and is making recommendations in an attempt to reverse the dramatic increase in suicides in the state.

I believe only Oregon, Washington, Belgium, and The Netherlands has laws that specifically permit assisted suicide or euthanasia.

Washington will likely follow Oregon's trend in the coming years.

Among Oregon's recommendations:

*Universal depression screening by health care providers.

*Comprehensive suicide prevention education in public high schools. (I wonder what that will look like.)

*Remove guns from homes when a family member is suicidal.

How about removing lethal prescriptions?

By legalizing abortion on demand, now euthanasia on demand, teaching there is no God or if so He is irrelevant, no Creator, no personal destiny, no moral absolutes or consequences for behavior and actions, we create a culture of death---not life. Why would anyone who holds that worldview believe in the sanctity of life? They don't.

Can a state with pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia policies successfully advocate for life? Can it successfully advocate for suicide for some and not for others?


Will the pastors and faith activists speak out on this conflicting issue in the state of Oregon? I pray so.

God help us.

Be Informed. Be Vigilant. Be Prayerful. Be Vocal. Be Blessed.

Thanks for
your support of this ministry.

Gary Randall
Faith and Freedom

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  1. Wow, scary headline, suicide rates spiked. So I did a quick google of 'oregon suicide rates' and it took me straight to the very study you're mis-quoting.

    At the top of the page was a chart showing Oregon's rate vs the national rate from 1981-2006 (25 years).

    Here's what the chart actually shows -
    1 - Oregon's rate has always been around 30% higher than the national average
    1 - there was actually a dramatic drop in Oregon's 1999 rate (2 years following Death w/ Dignity enacted)
    2 - there was an uptick in 2003, but it went back down
    4 - reality doesn't look anything like Gary's portrayal (ya gotta love charts)

    If you don't believe me, google 'oregon suicide rate', the chart's right at the top and the trend is very unmistakable.

    At this point, I have to believe that Gary never actually looked at the report and just took someone's word. There is no other explanation as to how his interpretation of the report could be so obviously backwards.

    Mark in Tigard

  2. I live in Oregon and I will speak out. Thank you Gary.

  3. Liberal progrssives will deny any linkage between suicide on demand and the increased suicide rate overall, but you make an excellent point. A culture of death produces death while a culture of life produces life.

  4. Well said. This causes me to wonder about the delayed consequences of many other laws and policies that are being put in place by secularists. Gay marriage? Federally funded abortion? How many years before we suffer from those consequences?

  5. Mark your comment is amazing. First the fact that the people at FFN posted it says much about them and their openness. No other faith based site I know of would have done so. Your comment begs the question, why is Oregon publishing a press release expressing concern about their rising suicide rate and giving recommendations of how to reverse it if there is no problem as you suggest? Have you read Oregon's press release that Gary linked? This story has caught national attention this morning. Nice try to fool the folks, but others are saying the same thing Gary is saying. Thanks FFN.

  6. 9:34

    All I can go by are the actual numbers in the report and they show that for the past 25 years, Oregon's rate trended with the national rate - just at a consistently higher level for all 25 years. Here is a direct quote from the report:

    "Overall the trend in Oregon suicide rates is similar to the national trend— but rates in Oregon are higher. The peak age-adjusted rate in Oregon between 1981 and 2007 occurred in 1986 at 17.0 per 100,000. The lowest age-adjusted rate during this period occurred in 1999 at 13.9 per 100,000."

    Notice that the lowest rate occurred 2 years after physician assisted suicide became law.

    The news release is raising an alarm because Oregon's rate has increased 8% since 2000. Guess how much the national rate has gone up since 2000. Yup, 8% - just like Oregon's. That makes it pretty hard to make a case against physician assisted suicide. You can't do it with the actual numbers. I'd post a link to them if it was allowed on this site.

    While these numbers are definitely cause for concern, there's no reason to blame physician assisted suicide.

    btw - for point of accuracy, as stated in my original post, there was major uptick in 2003, but it came right back down the next year. However, overall there has been that increase of 8% since 2000. But we're still lower than the rates prior to the big drop 2 years following the suicide law.

  7. I think it was the Internet. Think about it: Before 1995, people didn't really use the Internet in Oregon. Now that they have the Internet and people have greater access to stories about suicides in all of the far corners of the world, suicide rates have "spiked" in Oregon.

    You don't need any more proof than that.

  8. why is Oregon publishing a press release expressing concern about their rising suicide rate and giving recommendations of how to reverse it if there is no problem as you suggest?

    Rather obvious answer to that - it was a press release for National Suicide Prevention Day. As we now know Oregon has an ongoing problem with having higher suicide rates than the national average that goes on for decades. What is odd is why they chose that title for the article when Oregon has always had a suicide rate higher than the national average.

    One disturbing statistic is that male veterans are 27% of Oregon's suicides - if someone wants to watch something, that would be the statistic I would be concerned about. But whatever, there is no indication that it has anything to do with the Death with Dignity law, to suggest it seems pretty standard fear mongering to me.

  9. You don't think the high unemployment rate in Oregon, and increased stress could have anything to do with the increase in suicide do you? Actually Oregon's record keeping or lack of it is so poor, I don't know how they would detect an increase, other then the number of assisted suicide scripts they hand out.


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