Illinois is already a destination state for abortion, but now residents of the Land of Lincoln are being warned that a bill to legalize doctor-assisted suicide (DAS) could be in the offing. As of last week, no legislation has been formally introduced – and no language or bill number is available. That's according to Illinois Right to Life, which contends lawmakers are "having conversations behind closed doors" about such a bill.
Physician-assisted suicide is legal in ten states* and Washington, DC. But it's been more than 25 years since lawmakers in Illinois considered such legislation – and those efforts failed. Now, the pro-DAS group Compassion & Choices reports that a February survey indicates a "wide majority" of voters in Illinois support "medical aid in dying."
David Smith of the Illinois Family Institute tells AFN the Bible is replete with references to God's high value of life – including one of the Ten Commandments that prohibits murder.
"… When we question God, we circumvent his blessings – and we don't want to do that," he states. "So, we need people to oppose this bill in Springfield. We do not want to make Illinois a death haven of the nation."
According to the family advocate, lawmakers in the capital are hearing from proponents of euthanasia, but not necessarily those who don't support it.
"There isn't an outcry from the people of Illinois. Nobody is demanding that we get this. It's going to solve no problem that we really have in Illinois," he argues. "So, conservatives cannot afford to remain silent. Christians need to speak up and shine light into the darkness."
While life-affirming residents of the state are emailing and calling their elected representatives, Smith stresses that Republican members of the legislature need to stand united in opposition to it. Illinois Right to Life says the move to legalize the act could come before the current legislative session adjourns on May 19.
* California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington.