Euthanasia / Assisted Suicide - Archive

Pro-Euthanasia Attorney to Head ABA’s Special Bioethics Committee (2006)

She also has ties to Planned Parenthood and the ACLU. The American Bar Association’s (ABA) Special Committee on Bioethics has a new head who is pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia.

Chairwoman Estelle Rogers is the former executive director of the Death with Dignity National Center, a Washington-based organization dedicated to advancing assisted suicide.

Teresa Collett, a professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minnesota, told CitizenLink that Rogers has also been an ardent pro-abortion activist — having held positions at the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the Pro-Choice Public Education Project and the American Civil Liberties Union Reproductive Freedom Project.

“She has a definite perspective that is contrary to the culture of life,” Collett said. “I would suggest she can’t help but bring that viewpoint to the chairmanship.”

Carrie Gordon Earll [senior analyst, bioethics, Focus on the Family Action] said the ABA’s voice on key bioethics issues will be anti-life and anti-marriage under the thumb of Rogers. Earll said society is increasingly dealing with the legal implications of bioethics issues, including physician-assisted suicide, euthanasia and health-care professionals’ rights of conscience.

“There’s even talk of creating a federal constitutional right to research — including human cloning — that could not be reversed by any state body,” she said. “Those are the sorts of policies we’re looking at, as Rogers takes the helm.” Collett said the ABA’s bioethics committee has not shied away from taking on tough issues. “In fact, in the past year, their program was ‘Making the Perfect Baby,’ ” she said. “They looked specifically at the question of assisted reproductive technology and genetic enhancement.”

Make no mistake, the ABA long ago left behind neutrality on issues like abortion, Collett said.

“The organization itself has an official position that is opposed to any restrictions throughout pregnancy, even after public debates which cost it thousands of members,” she said. It’s conceivable, she added, that we may now see the ABA adopt even more aggressive positions as it files friend-of-the-court briefs or testifies before Congress on bioethical issues.

Bruce Hausknecht, judicial analyst at Focus on the Family Action, said the ABA, once considered the voice of the legal community, is no longer the top professional association for attorneys — and it shows. “The ABA is basically becoming a left-wing, radical, special-interest group, promoting far-left ideals and morals,” he said.

Imagine what might have happened, he said, if the new chairwoman had been a pro-life, anti-euthanasia activist attorney who had worked for pro-family legal groups, such as Americans United for Life or the American Center for Law and Justice. “There would be an outcry from the left like you wouldn’t believe,” Hausknecht said. “There would be public news conferences and calls for the removal of and resignation of those individuals responsible for such an outrageous appointment. That’s how the left would have handled such an appointment.” American Bar Association 321 North Clark Street Chicago, IL 60610 (312) 988-5000

[28Aug06, Pete Winn,, Focus on the Family (800) A-FAMILY (232-6459)]