House Bill 2217, which will effectively legalize euthanasia, is scheduled for a public hearing in the Oregon Legislature’s House Health Care Committee on Tuesday, March 19.
Oregon became the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide in 1997. Since then, 1,459 patients have taken the lethal medication to end their lives. Currently, there are several reasons patients claim as their reason for requesting assisted suicide. According to deathwithdignity.org, “The most frequently reported end-of-life concerns were loss of autonomy (91.7%), decreasing ability to participate in activities that made life enjoyable (90.5%), and loss of dignity (66.7%). During 2018, the estimated rate of deaths under the law was 45.9 per 10,000 total deaths in the state.”
Under the current law, patients must physically ingest medication by themselves. When requesting life-ending medication, patients must sign a form stating “I expect to die when I take the medication to be prescribed.”
However, Oregon lawmakers are seeking to expand the scope of this bill by changing the definition of “taking” to “self-administer.” As defined by HB 2217, “self-administer” means “a qualified patient’s physical act of ingesting or delivering by another method medication to end his or her life in a humane and dignified manner.”
Lois Anderson, executive director of Oregon Right to Life, stated, “There is no safety mechanism in place to ensure that another person isn’t the one administering the medication. By adding ‘delivering by another method’ they are redefining the law to allow the drugs to be administered through an IV, feeding tube, injection, or even through a gas mask. And, potentially, by a person other than the patient.”
The proposed changes appear to contradict the intention of Oregonians when they narrowly legalized assisted suicide. When voters approved Measure 16 in 1994 it explicitly stated, “This measure does not authorize lethal injection, mercy killing or active euthanasia.”
HB 2217 would effectively legalize euthanasia in Oregon by involving more people in the deaths of vulnerable Oregonians.
Oregonians will be gathering in protest of HB 2217 at the hearing on Tuesday, March 19th. For more details or to contact committee members in opposition, please go to https://www.ortl.org/noeuthanasia/.
This recent Nobel prize winner decided to give away $250,000 in prize money.
George P. Smith, a emeritus professor of biology, won the 2018 Nobel prize for Chemistry in December.
This past week he announced he will donate every cent to launch the Missouri Nobel Scholarship Fund for students in the College of Arts and Sciences.
“This might surprise some people, but my first degree was actually a bachelor of arts, not a bachelor of science,” Smith said at a community event in Columbia with his wife, Margie. “My liberal arts education was the springboard for a lifetime of learning and cultural engagement. Margie and I hope that supporting the liberal arts as a whole will enrich the lives of future Mizzou students, whatever careers they choose.”
In support of Smith’s kindness, the university will also donate an additional $30,000 to the scholarship fund.
MU Chancellor Alexander N. Cartwright also announced a new tradition to set aside $100,000 in scholarships, every time a faculty member wins a Nobel Prize. Smith is the first MU faculty member to win a Nobel prize.
“Time and time again we have been overwhelmed by George’s incredibly humble attitude, and today we are amazed even further by his spirit of generosity,” Cartwright said in a statement. “Gifts such as these make it possible for more students to attend our university and have the experience of being taught by other world-class faculty.”
At this week’s scholarship launching event, Smith spoke of his Nobel prize win and the award ceremony he attended with his wife in Stockholm, Sweden, in December, and discussed his work in phage display, a process that allows researchers to easily screen and harvest molecules for attacking bacteria.
This process is now utilized in laboratories worldwide.
According to Kansas City Star, after Smith won one of the most prestigious awards in the world, the University honored him with his own space on a campus bike rack. He lives less than a mile away and rides his bike to work each day.
To this day, faculty members still congratulate him for his win.
“George Smith has been a star of the College of Arts and Science for more than 40 years,” said Pat Okker, the college’s dean. “He is a fabulous researcher, an exceptional teacher and an awesome human being. This gift continues to prove how completely committed George and Margie are to student success.”
16-year-old Greta Thunberg has been nominated for the 2019 Nobel Peace prize in recognition of her international campaign to protect the environment.
Thunberg launched the Youth Strike for climate movement in Sweden, in August, but has since inspired students worldwide to protest.
Today, on March 15, young people and environmentalists are expected to strike in 1,659 towns and 105 countries.
“We have proposed Greta Thunberg because if we do nothing to halt climate change, it will be the cause of wars, conflict and refugees,” said Norwegian Socialist MP Freddy André Øvstegård. “Greta Thunberg has launched a mass movement which I see as a major contribution to peace.”
If Thunberg wins the prize, she will be the youngest person to ever become a Nobel Laureate. Currently, Malala Yousafzai holds the title for the youngest Nobel Laureate after winning the Nobel Peace prize at age 17 in 2014.
“I am honored and very grateful for this nomination,” said Thunberg on Twitter. “We #schoolstrike for our future. And we will continue to do so for as long as it takes.”
The 16-year-old has already challenged leaders in person at the 2018 UN Climate Summit and at Davos in January. “Change is coming whether they like it or not,” she said.
Although some politicians have opposed the school strikes, many have supported them, including Germany’s Angela Merkel and Ireland’s Leo Varadkar. The mayors of Paris, Milan, Sydney, Austin, Philadelphia, Portland, Oslo, Barcelona and Montreal also support the strikes.
“It is truly inspiring to see young people, led by brilliant young women, making their voices heard and demanding urgent climate action. They are absolutely correct that our actions today will determine their futures,” said Anne Hidalgo, the mayor of Paris and chair of the C40 group of cities. “My message to young citizens is clear: it is our responsibility as adults and political leaders to learn from you and deliver the future you want.”
The strikes have also been supported by the former head of the Anglican church Rowan Williams and the head of Amnesty International, Kumi Naidoo. “Children are often told they are ‘tomorrow’s leaders’. But if they wait until ‘tomorrow’ there may not be a future in which to lead,” said Naidoo. “Young people are putting their leaders to shame with the passion and determination they are showing to fight this crucial battle now.”
Christmas kindness and bliss immersed from 86-year-old Ken Watson. Watson bought 14 years worth of Christmas presents for his two-year-old neighbor Cadi Williams.
Watson connected with the Williams family after they moved into their first home three years ago. The Williams’ and Watson formed an instant friendship and continued to foster close relationships after Cadi came into the world.
After Watson’s recent passing, the family was left heartbroken. Then suddenly, their melancholy dissipated when 14 Christmas presents were delivered by Mr.Watson’s daughter to their home in Barry, Wales.
“He’d always told us he’d live till he was 100-years-old,” Owen Williams wrote on Twitter after the presents were delivered. “So these gifts would have taken him up to our little girl’s 16th Christmas.”
“I kept reaching into the bag and pulling out more presents,” Williams told The Washington Post. “It was quite something.”
After the presents were delivered, the Williams thought of beginning a new Christmas tradition called, “A present from Ken,” but they could not decide which presents to unwrap first in order to figure out each age-appropriate gift.
A Twitter poll helped the Williams decide on what to do with each gift. 69% of Williams’s followers believed he should leave the presents unwrapped and let Cadi decide which gift would be unwrapped.
“Message received loud and clear, Twitter!” wrote the excited father. “We’re definitely going to open one every year till 2032… It’ll be our way of remembering an immensely generous gentleman — our new Christmas tradition.”
Williams assured his new followers of regular updates on the unraveling of gifts.
Numerous followers praised the compassionate gesture, with one writing: “What a thoughtful man who clearly thought so much of you all as a family, made me cry this morning.”
“You have to give her one a year,” another wrote on Twitter. “It doesn’t matter in the slightest if they are too old or too young. Presents are all about the giving, not the receiving.”
Another wrote: “That is just the loveliest, most thoughtful thing to do. I would save them each year and remind her what a lovely man you lived next door to.”
Others deemed it a “truly beautiful gesture” and others said it was “the true meaning of Christmas.”
At the end of the decisions and gratitude Williams advised his Twitter followers to build and foster relationships with their neighbors.
“Give your neighbors a small gift, a token. Just say, ‘Hi.’ You can open a new world just like we did.”
Not not all heroes wear capes. One man wore a cast. 27-year-old Altavious Powell rescued his 93-year-old neighbor Maria Cabral by using a cast on his broken arm to shatter a window.
Each night Cabral lights a candle in the corner of her home, however, this past Monday the flame intensified and her home ablaze.
Powell, who lives across the street from Cabral, saw smoke and rushed to her home.
Cabral was still trapped inside when Powell arrived. Powell used his cast and a plastic chair to enter her home, WSVN reported.
“I said, ‘Maria, Maria, where you at?’ And she said, ‘I’m right here,’ Powell told WSVN. “She was right here standing on the wall, so I just grabbed her with one arm. She looked up at me and she just said, ‘Thank you.”
Powell and Cabral were both taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center for smoke inhabitation. Cabral is still recovering, but Powell was unharmed from the incident.
Cabral’s son told WSVN: “She wouldn’t have gotten out of the house alive if that man didn’t come here.”
After Powell heard many deemed him a hero, he simply said:
“I’m just glad I was able to do it and I got it over with, and everybody is safe now.”
88-year-old Genevieve Purinton thought she had no family left in the world until she reunited with her biological daughter on December 3.
Purinton resides in a retirement home in North Tampa. Her eight siblings died recently and had no other children after she gave birth at 18 in 1949 and was told the child had died.
Unbeknownst to Purinton, the child was born in Gary, Indiana, given up for adoption and raised in Southern California. It remains unclear as to why doctor’s misinformed Purinton about her daughter’s death.
“I asked to see the baby and they said she died, that’s all I remember,” Purinton told NBC.
Moultroup ended up adopted, but it took an unfortunate turn at the start. At five years, Moultroup’s adoptive father married an abusive step-mother.
For most of her youth, Moultroup hoped her biological mother would come to her rescue. “It’s been a lifetime of wanting this. I remember being five years old, wishing I could find my mother,” Moultroup, who now resides in Vermont, told Daily Mail.
“She would fantasize about her mother rescuing her since she was five years old. It’s truly her life-long dream,” Moultroup’s daughter Bonnie Chase, 50, added.
Moultroup was finally granted her life-long wish, when her daughter gave her an Ancestry DNA kit last Christmas.
“It was just a cool Christmas present and it has completely changed our lives,” Chase said.
The kit led Moultroup to call her cousin. “I said, “Here’s my mother’s given name,” Moultroup told WTNT. “She said, “That’s my aunt and she’s still alive.”
The mother and daughter reunited at the nursing facility earlier this week and cried joyous tears.
“We’re criers. We just cry a lot. There were a lot of tears and there’s been a lot of tears the entire time since then. It’s been really amazing,” Moultroup said.
“We’re thrilled that Ancestry was able to play a part in helping to connect Genevieve Purinton with her daughter after 69 years. We wish her and her family the best, and that this is the only beginning of an enduring relationship,” Jasmin Jimenez, a spokeswoman for Ancestry DNA told NBC.