Human Exceptionalism

Compassion and Choices Pushes Suicide by Starvation

The people at Compassion and Choices are blatantly mendacious. And the media do not care.

In the wake of the Diane Rehm story, in which she describes her husband committing suicide by self-starvation (“voluntary stop eating and drinking,” or VSED) and pushes legalizing doctor-prescribed death, the suicide-boosting NBC claims that Compassion and Choices wants to prevent these kinds of deaths. From the story:

It’s just the type of death the advocacy group Compassion & Choices, among others, has been fighting to prevent. Instead, John Rehm should have had the option of an assisted death, the group says. They call for “aid in dying” — allowing mentally competent, terminally ill adults to request life-ending medication from a doctor for a peaceful and painless death. It’s legal in several states, but not Maryland….

BULL! Compassion and Choices promotes VSED on its website. It has even published a booklet about suicide by starvation for those who are not terminally ill. From the introduction to Voluntary Stop Eating and Drinking (my emphasis):

Some call us because they feel overwhelmed by the symptoms of chronic and progressive illnesses that fill their days with misery and suffering. There are also those who may not be seriously ill but are simply “done.” After eight or nine decades of life, they want information about ways to gently slip away in a peaceful and dignified manner.

Regardless of their clinical circumstances, these individuals share a common desire to maintain autonomy over their own end-of-life decisions. They want to die as they have lived, making the important decisions that affect their lives with collaboration and support from trusted healthcare providers, family members and other caregivers.

And they teach people what to do and how to do it.

The media either don’t care about the truth or are too lazy to find it. I think it is the former.

That’s why they rarely call anti assisted suicide sources when writing these stories: They know what they don’t want to know.


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

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