Death with Dignity in Connecticut

Death with Dignity National Center Poster (Image Source: Guidestar.org)

Death with Dignity National Center Poster (Image Source: Guidestar.org)

While in London, just two weeks ago, a headline caught my attention. The Times of London mentioned the debate on Assisted Dying, known here in the US as the Death with Dignity Act.

The article claimed that, “Church leaders are out of touch with their congregations on the issue of assisted dying, according to research that found about 70 per cent of believers want to see a change in the law.”

In that group are Jews, Catholics and Anglicans who all want to see assisted dying legalized. 70% is a pretty big percentage.

Doctor Jack Kevorkian on the May 31 1993 cover of Time Magazine (Image Source: Time Content)

Doctor Jack Kevorkian on the May 31 1993 cover of Time Magazine (Image Source: Time Content)

It is amazing what a quarter of a century can do to social mores. It was only 24 years ago that the majority of people viewed Jack Kevorkian as a macabre figure, earning him the moniker, “Doctor Death.” The man actually pioneered the way for those who wished to end their suffering and those who wanted to help them.

Between the years of 1990 and 2011 Kevorkian claimed to have helped 130 people die. These were terminally ill people, most of whom he interviewed on tape and asked why they wanted to die.

The people Kevorkian assisted in dying wanted to end their suffering. In fact, one patient stated clearly that she, “wanted to be put to sleep.” The word “suffer” is used a lot by his patients. A documentary details Kevorkian’s journey through the courts, time and time again, in addition to some footage of patient interviews he conducted.

Physical pain due to cancer or other diseases among the terminally ill in Kevorkian’s interviews brings these people to the brink. The brink is where they look forward and see nothing but increased levels of pain, and look back and see the life that they had. They know they are not going to get better. They know that their death will be painful. And so, they chose the Kevorkian method of assisted dying.

Here in the US there are currently three states that have a Death with Dignity Act. Oregon implemented it first in 1997. Washington State was next in 2008 and Vermont initiated the act in 2013. It is on the bill in Connecticut. Known as The Physician Assisted Death Bill #5326 Bill, “An Act Concerning Compassionate Aid in Dying for Terminally Ill Patients,” and uses the Oregon, Washington State and Vermont acts as models. There are many articles and there’s lots of research on assisted dying.

The Hippocratic Oath (Image Source: Nova)

The Hippocratic Oath (Image Source: Nova)

The act works in the three sates that use it because even though the Hippocratic Oath taken by all doctors insists that they do no harm, the physician writes the prescription for the medication, but will not administer it. The person who administers the medication is self-administered. The medication is usually mixed by a Death with Dignity volunteer who is also a mentor for those who are dying.

Of course, people have many questions regarding the act. The Death with Dignity Act can only be used by a person who is  terminally ill, and already dying, and given a diagnosis of six months to llive. Physicians have the right to refuse to write the required prescription. I fail to see why they would refuse.

The morphine used to treat pain experienced by Cancer patients, when increased, decreases the mind’s ability to control the involuntary action of breathing. The mind forgets to tell the body to breathe. Is this not, in some way, assisted dying?

Here in Connecticut the bill had a public hearing on March 17, 2014. Currently it waits for the next House session to either be passed or not. The specifics of the bill can be read by clicking here. It is summarized as,

“AN ACT CONCERNING COMPASSIONATE AID IN DYING FOR TERMINALLY ILL PATIENTS.
To allow a physician to prescribe medication at the request of a mentally competent patient that has a terminal illness that such patient may self-administer to bring about his or her death.”

Initially, I thought that this act was a slippery slope, but it isn’t. The Oregon, Washington State and Vermont models are carefully crafted to make sure that only the mentally well but terminally ill over the age of 18 can choose to die with dignity.

In a documentary entitled How to Die in Oregon, Cody Curtis, aged 54 and dying of liver cancer altered my thinking with one very simple statement. She says, “I grew up in the country. We put our dogs and horses down. We didn’t let animals suffer.” (Start at 5:32)

You may become proactive in the Death with Dignity Campaign by signing this petition and urging elected officials to pass the bill.

 

Monty Python’s Meet and Greet just a Q and A

breisebreiseleighgoleire1969:

As more fans discover the discrepancy of July 1st Meet and Greet and the inadequate response from AXS and Ticket Zone, I have decided to reblog this post. It details the false advertising used to promote a Meet and Greet which cost 496 sterling and delivered a question and answer session, which according to later attendees, got progressively worse.

Originally posted on Breise! Breise! Extra! Extra!:

In what was originally billed as a Meet and Greet, including a group photo by a professional photographer, attendees of the July 3rd, 4th and 5th Monty Python Live (Mostly) Meet and Greet were left feeling like John Cleese in the Dead Parrot sketch, dissatisfied, to say the least.

Instead of actually meeting and greeting Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, John Cleese and Eric Idle, attendees who paid a premium price of 496 pounds sterling, approximately $700, got to take their photos from afar.

 Eve    @evelienh   How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.  5:59 AM - 5 Jul 2014


Eve @evelienh
How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.
5:59 AM – 5 Jul 2014

The original Meet and Greet Package promised a lot more than what was delivered. Just days before attending the event, participants…

View original 576 more words

#MeetGreetFail

This is how you do a meet and greet

and this

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

But this is not how you do a meet and greet:

Eve    @evelienh   How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.  5:59 AM - 5 Jul 2014

Eve @evelienh
How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.
5:59 AM – 5 Jul 2014

Monty Python’s Meet and Greet just a Q and A

In what was originally billed as a Meet and Greet, including a group photo by a professional photographer, attendees of the July 3rd, 4th and 5th Monty Python Live (Mostly) Meet and Greet were left feeling like John Cleese in the Dead Parrot sketch, dissatisfied, to say the least.

Instead of actually meeting and greeting Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, John Cleese and Eric Idle, attendees who paid a premium price of 496 pounds sterling, approximately $700, got to take their photos from afar.

 Eve    @evelienh   How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.  5:59 AM - 5 Jul 2014


Eve @evelienh
How not to do a Meet & Greet. £500 for a Q&A is not worth it, sorry.
5:59 AM – 5 Jul 2014

The original Meet and Greet Package promised a lot more than what was delivered. Just days before attending the event, participants received an email stating that the format had changed. The group photo promised at the end of the email never took place, attendees stood and listened to others ask questions whilst the Monty Python members sat on stage, far removed from the crowd and flanked by security men.

Many disappointed fans took to Twitter and Facebook in an attempt to connect with others who felt the change of format to the meet and greet was unfair. This resulted with a Facebook group page where disappointed fans shared their experiences and attempts at having the issue resolved.

In an email received a couple of days before the July 3, 4 and 5 Meet and Greet, participants were informed of the change but were not offered the opportunity to cancel and receive their money back.

Dear ___________,

This email details the VIP Meet & Greet arrangements we have put in place for you on the evening that you are attending the Monty Pythons show at the O2 Arena on 05-July.

After the show has ended please promptly make your way to the Building 6 which is located in The Avenue, opposite Brooklyn Bowl. Please take your event ticket/s with you as these are required to gain entry to the Meet & Greet area.

Upon arrival you will be greeted by an O2 representative and issued with drink tokens and a selection of merchandise items.

Please note we cannot guarantee that all the Pythons will be present at every Meet & Greet session.

Cameras are permitted in the Meet & Greet area however due to time constraints it will not be possible to have individual photos taken with the Pythons or for items to be signed by them. We will be arranging for official group photos to be taken by a top professional photographer which you will then be able to download from the internet.

We look forward to seeing you after the show.

kind regards,

The AXS Team

At the opening night’s Meet and Greet Getty Images took photos of fans shaking hands  and posing in group photos with the Monty Python Group.

Meet and Greet on July 1 (Image via Getty Images)

Meet and Greet on July 1 (Image via Getty Images)

Fans shaking hands and actually meeting Monty Python members at the July 1st Meet and Greet (Image source Getty Images)

Fans shaking hands and actually meeting Monty Python members at the July 1st Meet and Greet (Image source Getty Images)

The following video was posted on Youtube showing the difference between the opening night’s meet and greet and those that followed.

and here is the Q&A experience.

Though disappointed fans made an attempt to resolve the issue with the promoter and the Customer Service Office at the London O2 arena no one was satisfied by the response they received:

M&G Email

Though the show was wonderful, the Meet and Greet rip-off has left fans like myself wondering if it was all worth it. To date O2 has not responded to my own email.

Original O2 Ticket for 495 =1 sterling promising a "Meet and Greet."

Original O2 Ticket for 495 =1 sterling promising a “Meet and Greet.”

I received an email response from O2′s customer service rep, Sarah, today.

First Page O2 Customer Service email 2nd Page O2 Customer Service email Last Page O2 Customer Serivce email

The discrepancy lies in what the O2 AXS promised ticket buyers to the Meet and Greet package and what they are now telling customers in replies to complaint emails.

 

However, in an article on April 14, The Irish Mirror ran a competition to meet and greet the Pythons. Here’s what they promised would happen in the meet and greet,

““Meet & greets will take place after the show in a dedicated meet & greet room, includes live band, 2 drinks per person, at least 3 Pythons in attendance for photo opportunity and signing of winner’s show programme (winner to purchase), plus Python merchandise. There is no food or other hospitality included. Meet & greet places are non-transferable, no whole/part cash alternatives.”

Here is my email. I will repeat again and again, THE SHOW WAS GREAT AND WELL WORTH THE MONEY but the meet and greet was a costly Q&A and the email regarding changes was deliberately vague. Had I been informed accurately of precise changes I would have not attended and requested a refund.  And dammit there are typos – too late!

Page 1 Loretto's second email O2 Page 2 Loretto's second email O2

Another fan who won the meet and greet tickets posted on twitter:

Imagine that, this person won the meet and greet package, paid nothing to attend it, and they are still disappointed? How should I feel after parting with 3 X 496 pounds sterling?

On July 3rd the Monty Python Facebook page advertised an Amazon.com.uk competition which assured winners of meeting the members of Monty Python in person backstage after the show.

“Would you like to see one of the greatest comedy acts of all time perform live in the O2 Arena, London? We are celebrating the glorious return of Monty Python by offering the chance for you and a friend to watch “Monty Python Live (mostly)” at the O2 next month, then head backstage to meet The Pythons in person after the show.”

So, even as late as July 3rd it was still being billed as a meet and greet and attendees were being promised meeting in person with the group. The Q&A sessions commenced in lieu of the Meet and Greet on July 2nd. No one met the group in person from July 2nd on.

Monty Python’s Meet and Greet is just Q&A-Not worth the money

Image

M&G Email

Email Complaint regarding Meet and Greet rip-off at #MontyPythonLive (Mostly) July 5th

Members of Monty Python at the "Meet and Greet" after the O2 show Monty Python Live (Mostly) on July 5th. (Picture by Loretto Leary)

Members of Monty Python at the “Meet and Greet”-More Q&A- after the O2 show Monty Python Live (Mostly) on July 5th. (Picture by Loretto Leary)

If you were one of the people who was ripped off by a meet and greet promise at the Monty Python Live (Mostly) shows please read and feel free to copy and paste the email below, which I have sent to Phil McIntyre (promoter) and O2 AXS. The contact information for both are below the email.

Dear Sir or Madame,

My husband, son and I attended the July 5th performance of Monty Python Live (Mostly) at the O2 arena. We bought the tickets through your website and paid 496 Pounds Sterling each to attend the show and the Meet and Greet.
Two days before we left the US we were informed by email that the meet and greet would not happen before the show, as originally billed, but after. Not alone that but we were also informed that it was possible not all of the Pythons would be there. In addition we were informed that we would not be permitted to take pictures with the members of Monty Python.
When we did attend the meet and greet one of the members of the audience asked if she could get her picture taken with the group and the MC for the evening told us that if they did that for her they would have to do it for everyone, which was, in fact, what we all paid the 496 pounds sterling for! The meet and greet was no more than a 15-20 minute question and answer session. We were gifted a book, t-shirt and a mug as well as given a free drink, but the package we were given was absolutely not as advertised originally.
Later we learned that attendees of the meet and greet at the first couple of shows had professional group shots taken with the Monty Python group, some attendees took individual pictures with Monty Python members, people were in a receiving line to shake hands with and chat to the members of Monty Python- their experience was a true Meet and Greet. We were charged the same price as those attendees and we got far less. -Why?
I have attended special dates of Broadway plays where the Q&A was part of the ticket price, and the actors remained on stage longer. The Monty Python members were hustled off the stage after answering approximately 10-12 questions and no one was allowed to get their picture taken by a professional photographer with the group. We took a few photos of the group on stage, that was it.
I feel totally ripped off and will be sending a copy of this email to the promoter as well as to BBC Watchdog. I would like a refund for all three tickets we paid for. I didn’t fly from New York to London to take a photo of Monty Python, I did it because we paid for and were promised a professional group photo with the group.
Please respond in the manner with which I parted with 1,498 pounds sterling- SWIFTLY!
Loretto Leary
for $96 pounds sterling, Meet and Greet attendees received a T-shirt, a mug, and a book. The larger program cost extra. (Meet and Greet package items for Monty Python Live (Mostly) attendees picture by Loretto Leary)

for 496 pounds sterling, Meet and Greet attendees received a T-shirt, a mug, and a book. The larger program cost extra. (Meet and Greet package items for Monty Python Live (Mostly) attendees picture by Loretto Leary)

O2 AXS Contact Information

By Email:
support@AXS.com 

By Web form:
Visit support.AXS.com and click ‘Submit A Request’ near the top! 

By Phone:
1-888-9-AXS-TIX (888-929-7849)

925-357-4228 (for calls outside of the US and Canada)

Guest Services Team Hours:
Monday – Sunday 9am – 11pm EST

CONTACT Information for Phil McIntyre Entertainments

Phil McIntyre Entertainments, 3rd Floor, 85 Newman Street, London, W1T 3EU T: 020 7291 9000 F: 020 7291 9001 E: info@mcintyre-ents.com