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2016 January 9
by WCR President Linda Stanton

On Jan 9, 2016 we heard from Scott Fischbach, Exec. Dir. of Mn Citizens Concerned for Life. We learned that the teen abortion rate is down to less than 300 per year in MN. Also that 38% of abortions are taxpayer funded and that 40% of abortions are the 2nd and 3rd time for the mother (repeat). That’s just a tiny bit of the information shared.

In addition, Scott gave us background on assisted suicide and some cases from MN. The William Melchert-Dinkle case where the defendant visited chat rooms and made suicide pacts, then watched the others die by hanging. He was convicted but only served 6 months because his attorney wanted to appeal the case. However, a Court of Appeals confirmed his conviction in Dec. 2015.

Another case was of an Apple Valley woman with multiple debilitating conditions who was helped to commit suicide by Final Exit Network. They deliberately looked for a case in MN. They were convicted and fined $ 30,000 + the funeral expenses, but they are appealing because they want to overturn MN’s law.

Two bills have been introduced: SF 1880 and HF 2095 that would allow for assisted suicide if the person has a prognosis of only 6 months to live. Scott doesn’t know if the bills will be heard this session but thinks that they are unlikely to pass as there is a lot of opposition to making suicide easier. He urged people to tell their stories of recovering from life-threatening illnesses, like cancer, so people will know that healing and recovery are possible. He also said that less than 2% of patients with life-threatening illnesses receive care for their mental health at the time of crisis.

Thanks again to Scott Fischbach, Executive Director of MCCL, for giving a very informative presentation to the group.

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