Right-to-Die Bill Rejected in U.K.

British parliamentarians on Sept. 11 soundly rejected a right-to-die bill that would have allowed people with less than six months to live to end their lives legally. Only 118 members of Parliament voted in favor of the bill; 330 voted against it. The bill had faced strong opposition from various religious leaders in the United Kingdom. A letter written by Justin Welby, archbishop of Canterbury, and signed by leading representatives of the Roman Catholic, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu and Sikh faiths said the proposed bill crossed “a legal and ethical Rubicon” and would turn suicide into a social norm. Meanwhile, across the pond in the United States, a measure that would allow physicians to prescribe life-ending drugs to the terminally ill passed the California statehouse and was on its way to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk on Sept. 11.

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