SB 303 Dead, Dead, Dead

A couple of weeks ago we issued an alert against SB 303 in an attempt to fix the situation that allows hospitals and doctors to issue “secret” orders in a patients file to “Do Not Attempt to Resuscitate” (DNAR). While the goal was laudable, it was the clear view of most pro-life organizations and others that the solution was worse that the problem itself. Because of overwhelming opposition to this measure, Chairwoman Kolkhorst killed the bill by not allowing a vote before Saturday at midnight. This is a situation in which those rules worked in our favor.

Some have questioned why THSC got involved in this issue, and others have even said it was not a home school issue at all. Our response is that the foundation of our home school freedom is the fundamental, constitutional right of parents to direct the care, control, and upbringing of their children. Any weakening or violation of that right strikes at the very heart of our home school freedom, and that is the reason we publicly opposed this bill. It would directly undermine the right of parents to make decisions for their children in certain situations where doctors and/or hospitals sought to overrule the parents.

It’s a short step from not allowing parents to make medical decisions for their children to not allowing them to make educational decisions.

Fortunately, the vast majority of the home school community clearly understood the risk and responded in a huge way. The House sponsor of SB 303 even told THSC representatives that doctors were better qualified than parents to make decisions for children in end-of-life situations because parents are “too emotionally involved.” We would never tolerate a policy that gave “educational professionals” instead of parents the right to make educational decisions, nor should we in the area of medical decisions. Home schoolers were seen as a key element of the coalition that killed this bill. Thank you for responding!

Comments

  1. Bob deuell says

    Tim,

    With all due respect, you do not understand that SB 303 improved current law and gave patients, parents, and all family members more rights and process. It was supported by an overwhelming number of religious and ProLife groups.

    Respectfully,

    Bob Deuell

    • Tim Lambert says

      Senator,

      With all due respect, I disagree and there were numerous pro-life and religious groups against this bill including many who were supporters of TAL.

      Respectfully,

      Tim Lambert

  2. isenhower10 says

    Amen! What a blessing to read this report. I called every representative on the list and am encouraged that the efforts of THSC were so successful.

    Thank you, Tim and THSC!

  3. Gayle says

    Thank you for your efforts here, Tim. While the current law could use some revision, you are correct that there are both pro-life and medical organizations who opposed SB 303. (See the National Right to Life analysis here: http://www.nrlc.org/MedEthics/analysisofs303.pdf, and the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons here: http://www.aapsonline.org/index.php/site/article/stop_texas_bill_sb_303_harmful_to_patients39_rights/?newsletter=off.)

    Perhaps a future bill that was drafted with input from a broad spectrum of legal and medical analysts would be more successful at improving the current law in a more meaningful way.

    Thanks,
    Gayle