Massachusetts has a new proposal, filed by state Sen. Barry Finegold, D-Andover, that would make suicide by coercion a crime punishable by jail time. It is long overdue that Massachusetts join the majority of other states with laws that make suicide by coercion a crime punishable by jail time. However, the Finegold Bill is inherently discriminatory in that it does not include protections for the terminally ill. By including an exemption for physician-assisted suicide denies equal protection under the law for a group of people simply because they are seriously ill.
“The legislation, titled ‘Conrad’s Law’, would set a maximum sentence of five years in prison for anyone who ‘intentionally coerces or encourages that person to commit or attempt to commit suicide” using physical acts or mental coercion such as “deceptive or fraudulent manipulations of the other person’s fears, affections or sympathies.’
The proposal includes an exemption for physician-assisted suicide, which isn’t legal in Massachusetts, with bills to allow the controversial practice being considered on Beacon Hill.”
Read more at The Eagle Tribune…