Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of October 31, 2005
Knights launch campaign against assisted suicide bill
By BILL GLEN
To me, and our membership, life is life and we have to respect it."
- Peter Wong
"The stance of the Knights of Columbus is to preserve life and respect life. This issue is a modification of the criminal code that would allow for what is being called "dying with dignity," he said.
"But people have the right to define what dignity is. To me, and our membership, life is life and we have to respect it."
Wong has encouraged the more than 15,000 members of the Alberta/NWT council to write their MPs as well.
"The response from the membership has been great," Wong said. "We have passed along our position to them, asking them to write letters in conjunction with what the bishops in Alberta have said. I believe the bishops have written the parishes encouraging all parishioners to write letters as well. The Knights will be working together with local parish councils."
Wong says the entire Catholic community in Canada - not just in Alberta and the Northwest Territories - must get involved because every letter will help to defeat the bill.
"We have received only one reply, from Conservative MP Rick Casson's office in Lethbridge. He said he will pass the letter along to Parliament," Wong said.
"As far as the Conservative Party is concerned, there is no official policy on assisted suicide, but Casson is in support of our viewpoint. It is definitely encouraging. Hopefully this reply is the first of many more."
The bill was tabled by Bloc Quebecois MP Francine Lalonde. The first hour of debate is scheduled for Oct. 31.
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