Monday, January 1, 2018


It is with a heavy heart that we inform you that JJ Hanson passed away on December 30 peacefully at home surrounded by his family and their love.  The world and our cause have lost a courageous, charismatic and inspirational leader whose short life was dedicated to service to others.  To know him was to love him.  JJ is survived by his beloved wife, Kristen, and two young sons, James and Lucas. 

The New York Alliance Against Assisted Suicide released the following life summation and tribute to JJ Hanson. 

NYAAAS Mourns the Passing of J.J. Hanson

Albany, NY - On December 30, 2017, following a valiant battle with cancer, J.J. Hanson passed away surrounded by family and friends. 
A U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served in Iraq, J.J. was diagnosed with glioblastoma--an aggressive form of brain cancer--in May 2014. Thirty-three years of age at the time, J.J. was told that he had four months to live; however, he proved the doctors wrong. After J.J. underwent a grueling regimen of surgery, chemotherapy, and an experimental treatment, his cancer subsided. 
Following his recovery, J.J. became a national advocate for the terminally ill. In his role as President of the Patients' Rights Action Fund, J.J. worked to prevent the legalization of physician-assisted suicide in New York and other states. J.J.'s experience with cancer, together with his professional background in government, equipped him to be a remarkably effective leader, communicator, and influencer. J.J. also created a blog to share information about his journey with glioblastoma; the blog,, derives its name from J.J.'s family motto, "You Can't Hurt Steel."
J.J. Hanson outlived his initial prognosis by more than three years, and his life story has been an encouragement and an inspiration to cancer survivors and many others across the country. He is survived by his wife, Kristen, and their two sons.
The New York Alliance Against Assisted Suicide mourns the passing of our treasured colleague and friend. We will miss J.J.'s leadership, his optimism, his selflessness, his tenacity, and his willingness to draw upon his own difficult experiences to advocate for others facing challenging medical problems. We can unequivocally say that J.J. Hanson's life--despite its brevity--made the world a better place for those who will come after him. 

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Today I was reading John Wesley’s very last letter, written on his deathbed, and it went to William Wilberforce, the Englishman who led an almost 20 year battle to see slavery in England outlawed.  No doubt he often despaired and felt like giving up, but his passion and calling were such, that he continued the fight until the last days of his life saw that realization.  

John Wesley wrote to him: “unless God has raised you up for this very thing, you will be worn out by the opposition of men and devils.  But if God be for you, who can be against you?  Are all of them together stronger than God?  O be not weary of well-doing!  Go on, in the name of God and in the power of His might…”

200 years later, that opposition hasn’t gone away.  To be sure, it has increased exponentially to where Christian witnesses feel more isolated than ever before.  But, be encouraged because we work toward an already assured victory in standing for the truth of Scripture.  

There are many fronts or aspects to the battle with which we fight, whether physician assisted suicide, abortion, right of conscience, sexuality issues, human trafficking and the list goes on, but to echo John Wesley “are all of them together stronger than God?”  Of course the answer is a resounding no!

Stay the course fellow soldiers.  The apostle Paul said that after putting on the full armor of God, having done everything, to simply stand.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

We need to be in prayer for our Canadian counterparts who are facing battles in Canada that are gaining traction.  
The enemy is not idle and not giving up.  We are either moving forward or backward but there is no neutrality in this spiritual battle.  Putting our heads in the sand accomplishes nothing except to blind us to the truth.

Friday, July 28, 2017

As Connecticut state director for the American Academy of Medical Ethics, I and my fellow state directors, along with many others, face a number of ethical challenges.  Certainly, one of the major issues is Physician Assisted Suicide (PAS), but a number of others are also important for us to be vigilant in challenging:  Right of conscience, abortion, cloning, stem cell research to name several.

One of the issues we all face is end of life decision making.  This is not only for those of us that are moving into the latter half of our lives, but for younger people who are considering decisions that could prove dangerous.

Below is a link from CMDA's website regarding a recent "conversation" that Dr. Stevens had with a robot.  I encourage you to take five or ten minutes and carefully read this.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

This is a re-posting of a message I received from the Patients Rights Action Fund.  It is a nice summary of the actions so far this year regarding Physician Assisted Suicide.  
It represents much to give God praise and also an encouragement to keep praying and working. God is on the throne and prayer changes things.  Someone once said "pray as if it all depends on God and work as if it all depends on us".   When the wall was being rebuilt in Jerusalem, they worked while carrying their swords.  "The burden-bearers carried their loads in such a way that each laboured on the work with one hand and with the other held a weapon.  And each of the builders had his sword strapped at his side while he built" (Neh 4:17-18)

Legislative sessions are officially over for the spring and, in some states, for the year.   Assisted suicide opponents were extremely successful in preventing any more states from legalizing assisted suicide.  In several of the states, the battles were very difficult but our coalitions worked extremely hard and prevailed.  

In the last week, bills stalled for the remainder of 2017 in New York and Delaware.   Last year, there was a favorable vote in the New York Assembly Health Committee for the assisted suicide bill.   This year, proponents were not able to garner enough votes in that same committee to have a vote!   This is huge as New York is the prize most desired by Compassion and Choices!

We learned on Thursday of this week that the Delaware House was going to vote on the assisted suicide bill on Friday.  Our coalition mobilized with one-day notice and spearheaded an intense campaign which stalled the bill until 2018.  

Major kudos and congratulations to our heroic coalitions in New York and Delaware for an exceptional job!  

In addition, bills were defeated in North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon and Rhode Island as their legislative sessions ended, bringing the total to 23 states where measures were defeated, died from inaction, stalled or were withdrawn.   Of the remaining states, Massachusetts, South Dakota and New Jersey are the ones to watch.   

Defeated Bills to Legalize Assisted Suicide in 2017
·         Oklahoma:  HJR 1009 (Ballot measure)  -- died in committee
  • North Carolina:  HB 789 – died in committee
·         New York:  S.3151/A.2383 , A.3598 “End-of-Life Options” Act --  no committee votes taken, stalled in committee
  • Delaware:   HB 160 – passed in committee, full House vote stalled
·         Rhode Island:  House Bill 5468, Senate Bill 224 – no action taken, died in committee
·         Oregon:  SB 893 (allowed health care agents to fulfill requests for lethal drugs) --  died in committee
·         Mississippi:  Death with Dignity Act Senate Bill 2283 – died in committee
·         Utah:  HB 76 – tabled in committee
·         Tennessee:  SB 1378, HB 1394 – withdrawn
·         Maryland:  SB 354– withdrawn; HB 370 – died in committee
·         Wyoming:  HB 0122 – bill was drafted but not introduced, dead at this time
·         New Mexico:  House Bill 171, SB 252 – defeated by Senate vote
·         Indiana:  SB 273, HB 1561  – died in committee
·         Nebraska:  Legislative Bill 450 – died, not a priority bill
·         Connecticut:  H.B. No. 6024, HB 6238 – died in committee
·         Kansas:  HB 2120 Death With Dignity Act– died in committee
·         Arizona:  HB 2336 – died in committee
·         Iowa:   Senate File 215, House File 299– died in committee
·         Missouri:  Death With Dignity Act HB 524 – attempt to add to another bill failed
·         Hawaii:  SB 1129 -- passed in the Senate and  died in a House committee.
·         Alaska:  HB 54 - Voluntary Termination of Life – held in committee without action
·         Maine:  LD 1066 -- An Act to Promote Life with Dignity;  LD 347 --An Act To Support Death with Dignity – passed in the Senate and defeated by House vote
·         Nevada:  SB 261 – passed the Senate and died in a House committee

Active Bills to Legalize/Expand Assisted Suicide in 2017: 
·         New Jersey:  S 2474 --carryover from 2016
·         Massachusetts:  H.1194, S.1225
·         Pennsylvania:  SB 238
·         Minnesota:  SF 1572 – End of Life Options Act
·         Wisconsin:  AB 216, SB 312 -- Compassionate Choices
·         Michigan:  HB 4461  -- legalizes assisted suicide 
  • Michigan:  HB 4462 – amends criminal sentencing standards to eliminate the penalties for assisting a suicide

Ballot Measures
·         South Dakota:  Signatures being gathered for a November 2018 ballot measure.

From Barbara Lyons, dated 7/2/2017

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

From the Patients Rights Action Fund:

We are writing to share a remarkable video featuring Dr. Brian Callister of Nevada detailing the failure of assisted suicide in California and Oregon.  Today, it is being released to national publications and promoted through a digital social media campaign.  What makes Dr. Callister’s story so compelling?  It includes a doctor’s personal story of how two of his patients were denied life-saving treatment by their health insurance.  This is yet another example of the dangerous failures of assisted suicide from the patient’s and medical community’s perspective.  His testimony is a current and direct validation of our concerns that we have been claiming for over a decade. 
          As both a terminal patient and the President of the Patients Rights Action Fund, I ask you for your support and assistance in spreading this important story.  Through your organizations, coalitions and alliances, we ask that you share or boost this video via social media.  Your support will help improve our ability to spread this story nationally.  We are at a pivotal moment in this battle against assisted suicide and your support will help every state defeat this dangerous law.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Praise the Lord for continuing victories in the battle against Physician Assisted Suicide (PAS)!!

  1. American Academy of Medical Ethics (AAME) achieved a hard fought victory in Vermont when Compassion & Choices, a pro-suicide group, elected to drop its appeal of a federal court's decision to affirm that a Vermont law cannot be interpreted to force pro-life health care professionals to counsel or refer patients about PAS.  Because C&C chose to stand down, the US Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit dismissed the appeal which ends the case!! 
  • Many thanks to the attorneys of the Alliance Defense Fund for all their hard work on behalf of CMDA and the Vermont Alliance for Ethical Healthcare. 
      2.  A second reason to rejoice and thank God comes from Maine's legislative body which today effectively killed their PAS bill. 

Prayer is still needed for Nevada where PAS legislation has passed the Senate and is moving to their Assembly for a public hearing and committee vote.  Pray that these victories will continue in the Silver State.  

Despite the times we live in, and the trend to moral relativism, these continuing successes on a variety of ethical fronts demonstrate that God is on the throne and we are to be bold, moving forward with complete faith in Him and without fear of man.