Oregon Right to Life has had long-standing opposition to the use of force, intimidation, and violence by any person pursuing pro-life activities. Our commitment to the well-being of all human life requires that we respect the inherent value and dignity of all people. Just as we condemn abortion and euthanasia, we oppose private acts that take human life, inflict bodily harm, or destroy another’s property. No board member, officer, employee, or chapter officer may participate in any illegal or harmful act against another person or property in pursuing pro-life activity.
Oregon Right to Life will not knowingly do business with any organization or business which endorses violence in any way toward pro-abortion persons or businesses.
Oregon Right to Life believes in the sanctity of all human life from the moment of conception to natural death. We are opposed to abortion under any circumstances except where the life of the mother is in imminent danger.
Oregon Right to Life supports the sanctity of human life from the moment of conception until natural death. We oppose all cases of euthanasia, whereby a person is deliberately killed through direct action or omission even if that act is by their permission.(In contrast, a person who chooses to refuse life-prolonging treatment is not committing physician-assisted suicide but is rather allowing nature to take its course.)
Examples of euthanasia include allowing disabled newborns to die of routinely treatable medical conditions, withholding food or water from the comatose or lethally injecting a terminally ill patient.
In Oregon, the legal form of euthanasia is physician assisted suicide, and is euphemistically called “death with dignity.” In this act, a physician prescribes lethal drugs knowing their patient intends to use the drugs to commit suicide.
Advance Directives and POLST
Health care decisions at the end of life may include decisions that must be made after a person becomes incapacitated and unable to make decisions for themselves. Before that stage is reached, Oregon Right to Life recommends that a trusted person be appointed to make those decisions for the patient if he/she becomes incapacitated.
Oregon law requires that “living wills” and “durable powers of attorney” for health care decisions be set forth on a standard form called an Advance Directive. Part B of this form is called “Appointing a Health Care Representative.” Oregon Right to Life recommends that you complete this section. Use Part B to appoint someone you trust as your health care representative to make end-of-life treatment decisions for you when you are no longer capable of making those decisions for yourself.
Part C may limit the decisions your trusted health care representative can make. Oregon Right to Life encourages you to leave Part C blank.
Fill out Part D and E to finish the authorization for your health care representative. Make sure your physician, your health care representative, and you have copies.
The Physician Order for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) is different from an Advance Directive.
The POLST form, initially designed to decrease unnecessary health care interventions at the end of life, is being promoted as a tool to decrease healthcare costs and has several limitations:
- Becomes a physician’s order and must be followed
- Is simplistic and may not reflect current medical circumstances
- Can easily be misused
- It is inflexible and in most cases, overrides any decisions the person you have appointed as your health care representative would make
Unless you have a prognosis of less than one year to live, Oregon Right to Life discourages filling out a POLST form.
Infanticide is the killing of an infant, usually because of a disability. Oregon Right to Life is opposed to the arbitrary termination of innocent life at any point from conception to natural death regardless of condition, health, or age.
Experimentation on human beings, born or preborn, must be with full and informed consent unless consent is impossible due to age or condition of the person involved. When informed consent is not possible, experimentation is acceptable only if it is for the intended benefit of the patient and the amount of pain and risk have been considered. All other human experimentation is unequivocally condemned including the gathering of scientific data by the experimentation on a human being scheduled for death or in the process of being killed.
Oregon Right to Life takes no position on any birth control method which prohibits the sperm and egg from uniting. Once the sperm and egg have united, however, a new human life begins and ORTL opposes any drug, device, or procedure which destroys the new human life. ORTL supports the full disclosure of information by a physician to women considering contraceptives. ORTL supports the right of medical professionals to exercise their conscience in all medical care.
The natural process of human conception is the union of egg and sperm within the maternal body, which provides the safest and most supportive environment for the maturation of the newly created, fragile human being. Oregon Right to Life (ORTL) upholds the natural process of human conception. ORTL opposes all techniques of human conception occurring outside of the maternal body which leads to the destruction of human life, whether for family growth or experimentation. Presently, this includes any method of assisted reproduction that employs in vitro fertilization.
Oregon Right to Life opposes human cloning for any purpose. Cloning is the creation of a new human being by the introduction of human DNA into an enucleated egg. Since embryonic development ensues from this artificial type of fertilization, a human life has begun. Therefore, destruction of the embryo for any of its cells (e.g. stem cells) violates his or her right to life. Because it is documented that cloning for reproductive purposes results in a high failure rate during which most cloned embryos die or are discarded, Oregon Right to Life also opposes cloning for reproductive purposes.
Oregon Right to Life opposes both the destruction of human embryos created by any method, and any research conducted with human embryonic stem cells. This is in agreement with the American Medical Association statement policy for research which states: “It is fundamental social policy that the advancement of scientific knowledge must always be secondary to the primary concern for the individual.” Research is unethical if it is predicated on the destruction of one human being for the gain of another.
Oregon Right to Life supports the current successful medical research with non-embryonic stem cells (e.g. those from umbilical cord blood and adult tissues). Medical treatments requiring stem cells are to be developed using ethical sources. Currently, thousands of people have been cured or helped by successful adult stem cell or umbilical cord blood stem cell treatments.
ORTL affirms the inherent value of all human beings from the moment of conception to natural death. As such, ORTL asserts that all human lives started by any form of natural or assisted reproduction or cloning, for any purpose, are to be protected from intentional harm.
Oregon Right to Life does not take a position on the death penalty. The death penalty, when carried out by due process of law, is punishment for a capital crime which kills the person after being found guilty. Abortion is not a punishment, yet it kills an innocent person without due process of law. Oregon Right to Life is dedicated to protecting innocent human life and remains neutral on capital punishment.