I have said it until I am blue in the face and I will continue saying it: Once a society decides that killing is an acceptable answer to human suffering, that which is deemed “acceptable suffering” will continue to expand until just about any category of suicidal person will eventually qualify. The Netherlands shows again that it is true. Despite the most liberal euthanasia/assisted suicide culture in the world–the loose laws aren’t even really enforced–it is still not enough. Now, there is a call to help the elderly commit suicide who are “tired of life.” From the story:
A group of older Dutch academics and politicians have launched a petition in support of assisted suicide for the over-70s. They hope to attract over 40,000 signatures, enough to get the issue debated in parliament under citizens’ initiative legislation. Under Dutch law, euthanasia can only be practised if the patient is suffering ‘unbearable pain’. The doctor must be convinced the patient is making an informed choice and a second doctor must also give his or her opinion. But the new lobby group say people aged over 70 who are tired of life should also have the right to professional help in ending it. The group says the euthanasia would be carried out by specially trained nurses, psychologists or other professionals who would go through a careful process to make sure there is no pressure on the elderly person.
Please. Just read the work of Dr. Herbert Hendin and the pro euthanasia book by a Dutch nursing home doctor Dancing With Mr. D, and you know emotional coercion toward euthanasia happens now in the Netherlands–and nothing is done about it. And why restrict it to the over 70 set? Younger periods of life can get “tired of life,” too.
And get this for crassness:
And neurologist Dick Swaab said death should be straightforward. ‘ Throughout the animal kingdom, individuals are simply replaced, rather than patched up endlessly,’ the NRC quoted him as saying.
Talk about returning to the bad old days of social Darwinism!
This is the moral of the story: We are a logical species. Once we accept a premise or a principle, we take it to where it naturally leads. Hence, once the door is opened to assisted suicide, the license will continue to expand until you end up with far more than that for which you originally bargained.