On Tuesday, there appeared in the Havre Daily News articles that covered one half of the "Home" section headsheet and dealt with the "end of life" controversy.
There are several problems dealing with the articles which prompt the attention dealt from this letter. First, inquiry into the appearance of the article divulged that the article was, in fact, a paid advertisement that was not properly identified and tagged as such a sales gimmick. This may, perhaps, have been an oversight, but it portrayed the article as the newspaper's policy position in the controversy. The appearance seemed to further endorse the credibility of the conduct of the educationalist institution where a public presentation is planned, and it leaves unanswered the effects of a debatable ruling on behalf of the medical-government complex that strikes the people of Montana.
With regard to that educationalist institution's conduct, the format for a proper debate of the issues has been bypassed, and the opinions a member of the hallowed medical profession seems to be accepted without question. Yet, according to the article, that member of the medical profession does not seem to be licensed to practice medicine in Montana. In most states where he is unlicensed to practice medicine, his testimony would not be allowed or tolerated in their courts of law. Is his unsworn testimony to be considered credible to the people in Montana? Where is the other side of the controversy in the debate? Why are known medical facts regarding depression, its effects, and its treatment ignored? Where does one get the idea that compassion is more important than mercy when it is only a portion of mercy?
With regard to the unanswered effects of a debatable ruling on behalf of the medical-government complex, one wonders why Mr. Baxter needed to impose himself on someone else ... "legally" ... so that he could commit suicide. Was it a legal scam to collect upon his insurance? How can a physician or a group of physicians ... not trained in the scope and breadth of the law ... be allowed to do what no judge can do without the consent thereof and arguement before proper jurors?
Richard E. Nau
(Editor’s note: The Havre Daily News has a policy to tag any advertisement which, by appearance and style, might be construed as news in nature as “Paid Advertisement.” The ad in question from Tuesday, Sept. 14, by appearance is clearly an ad for a seminar as well as seeking an endorsement.