I assume that as a Jewish rabbi Elias Lieberman believes in God, the creator of life. But after reading his Feb. 4 “Matters of Faith” column, “Support medical-aid-in-dying legislation on Beacon Hill,” I wonder if he realizes what he is supporting.

This is at least the third or fourth rendition of this bill originated by the organization Compassion & Choices, which used to be called the Hemlock Society. A patient diagnosed with a terminal illness is given a life expectancy date; a cognizant adult makes a decision to accept life-ending medication; a physician prescribes the “medication”; the physician is complicit in the suicide but need not be present when it occurs.

Palliative care and hospice are the alternatives, along with the comfort provided by family and friends.

The possible unintended consequences include forced suicides, as have happened in countries such as the Netherlands and Belgium; depression and a sense of being a financial burden to one’s family; decisions made by insurance providers to lower costs; improper diagnosis.

Having watched a loved one suffer, I am acutely aware of the pain endured by family and friends; but my consolation is that in my faith tradition there is a redemptive quality to suffering.

I urge readers to oppose H. 1194/S. 1225, the End of Life Options Act.

Doris Toohill

Oleans