A new way to die in the West — thanks to Colorado

❝ Apart from the presidency, Tuesday’s election offered some interesting results for the way Americans meet their ends. In Nebraska, Oklahoma and California, voters supported restoring or accelerating the death penalty.

Meanwhile in Colorado, voters approved a measure that will allow terminally ill people to end their own lives. This makes it the sixth state to offer such an option.

❝ Assisted suicide allows a terminally ill person to buy — with a doctor’s permission and evaluation — a barbiturate, usually pentobarbital or secobarbital. These drugs depress central nervous system function, and can be used as anti-convulsants or anesthetics. At high doses, they cause death.

Colorado’s ballot initiative passed overwhelmingly, with two-thirds of voters in support and just one-third opposed…

❝ Colorado’s new law was modeled after Oregon’s “Death with Dignity” law, which passed 22 years ago. The much-publicized assisted death of 29-year-old Brittany Maynard in that state was a central aspect of the campaign in Colorado; her husband, Dan Diaz, has been working to change the law in other states…

California, Vermont and Washington have similar laws that allow some form of medical aid in dying. In Montana, people can be given the option through case-by-case court approval. Canada, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Switzerland also allow medically assisted death…

Nicest thing about the Colorado law? C’mon, you already know the answer to this one. In Colorado you can get stoned on the way out – making the experience a bit easier on the decision-maker.

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