The Corner

Culture

Ontario, Canada Euthanasia Tyranny Against MDs

Ontario, Canada has passed a law formally legalizing lethal injection euthanasia. And it will force all provincial doctors to be complicit by either doing the deed themselves to all legally qualified patients who request to be killed, or by tasking them with procuring a death doctor. From the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Website (my emphasis):

In Ontario, health regulatory colleges are responsible for regulating their respective professions in the public interest. In doing so, colleges may establish policies and standards that their members must comply with, including policies and standards regarding medical assistance in dying.

The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario requires that when physicians are unwilling to provide certain elements of care for reasons of conscience or religion, an effective referral to another health-care provider must be provided to the patient. An effective referral means “a referral made in good faith, to a non-objecting, available, and accessible physician, other health-care professional, or agency”.

Think about this. Three years ago, it would have been a felony for doctors to kill patients, potentially landing them in prison.

Now, refusing to participate in homicide could cost them their medical licenses.

The question I am often asked is, “Why?” Why force a doctor to participate in killing against her moral or religious beliefs when a patient wanting to be lethally injected could easily find a death doctor through a pro-euthanasia organization or a list of willing MDs published by the government–as has been established in other provinces.

Here’s what I think:

First, a doctor refusing to kill sends a powerful message that the act is wrong morally and medically. That message must be silenced.

Second, medicine is being weaponized as a means of turning culture away from the core principles of intrinsic human dignity and the equality/sanctity of life, into a society more focused on radical and atomistic individualism and utilitarian outcomes.

Third, compulsory euthanasia complicity marginalizes the influence of religion in society and strengthens secularism.

Fourth, this is a splendid way to cleanse orthodox religious believers, Hippocratic Oath-accepting doctors, and pro-lifers from the health professions–and dissuade those holding such beliefs from becoming physicians, nurses, and pharmacists.

I am sure there are other forces at work. But this much I know: Conscripting doctors to be homicide facilitators as a condition of practicing medicine is tyranny.  

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

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