Wording increases/decreases support for assisted suicide, Gallup finds

By Dave Andrusko, National Right to Life News --

The headline reporting on a Gallup poll is accurate as far as it goes but incomplete- "U.S. Support for Euthanasia Hinges on How It's Described: Support is at low ebb on the basis of wording that mentions 'suicide.'"

Let's talk about what the headline highlights. The Gallup graphic is reproduced below and it includes the wording. According to Lydia Saad:

PRINCETON, NJ -- In the same month that Vermont became the fourth state to legalize physician-assisted suicide, a May 2-7 Gallup survey finds 70% of Americans in favor of allowing doctors to hasten a terminally ill patient's death when the matter is described as allowing doctors to "end the patient's life by some painless means." At the same time, far fewer -- 51% -- support it when the process is described as doctors helping a patient "commit suicide."

gallup52-72013.gif

Gallup May 2-7, 2013

To her credit, Saad spells out the key differences between the wording in the two questions:

Gallup's question with the softer description of euthanasia -- calling it "ending a patient's life by some painless means" -- also specifies that both the patient and his or her family requested it. The "suicide" version says the patient requests assistance from a doctor, without referencing other family members.
Either way, the question is wrapped in a cocoon of compassion that softens naturally resistance. But there's much more....

Read entire article here.




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