A California Congressman is advocating a bill to make it illegal to encourage suicide over the Internet. Representative Wally Henger is attempting to table legislation aimed at banning encouragement of suicide through Internet chat rooms, email, and instant messaging. Despite concerns raised over potential curtailing of speech, advocates of the bill have argued for the need of legislation following the suicide of 19-year old Suzanne Gonzales. A student at Florida State University, she committed suicide four years ago after discontinuing antidepressant medication and obtaining poison on the advice of online participants in a chat room to which she belonged. Following her suicide, chat room participants referred to it as a "success". Suzanne Gonzales' father, Mike, has accused the site's participants of being "serial killers". He added, "What a perfect place for someone who gets their thrills playing God,"
Although those who encouraged Suzanne Gonzales' suicide can not be charged under existing legislation, her family members are hoping that the proposed bill can be used to save lives in the future.