Law & the Courts

The Corner

Charlie Gard Attorney: Kill Instead of Withdraw Life Support

As I reported here previously, the attorney representing the guardian of the catastrophically ill baby, Charlie Gard — and hence, who is representing Charlie Gard — and opposing allowing his parents to have control over his medical care, is the chairwoman of a charity closely affiliated with an assisted suicide advocacy organization.

It seemed to me that her ideological predisposition created the clear appearance of an ideological conflict of interest. But we don’t have to infer. She has stated explicitly that patients whose life support is removed should be euthanized instead. From the Daily Mail story:

Every legal professional dreams of being named ‘lawyer of the week’ by the Times, an honour that brings a set-piece interview in which the newspaper asks such questions as, ‘What single law would you enact?’

Six months ago, highly regarded barrister Victoria Butler-Cole found herself in this coveted position.

Her answer was that she’d change British law to allow doctors to kill terminally ill patients more efficiently.

‘When the Court of Protection decides it’s not in a person’s best interests to continue to receive artificial nutrition and hydration, it’s withdrawn and the person dies slowly of dehydration,’ she declared. 

How about not dehydrating people to death instead? Nah. That would be too sanctity of life.

I’d bet that if Butler-Cole were totally honest, she would willingly argue that Charlie should be lethally injected rather than have his respirator removed. 

It seems to me that Cole’s representation on behalf of Charlie indicates that the fix in this case was supposed to be in. If he is allowed to be taken elsewhere, it will only be because of an international outpouring of objection to the current course.

Wesley J. Smith — Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.

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