Human Exceptionalism

Mother “Mercy” Stabs Autistic Son

An autistic teenager was murdered by his mother to “end his suffering. From the CBS Chicago story:

Cook County prosecutors said a west suburban woman and family caregiver planned for at least a week to kill the mother’s 14-year-old son, because they believed he wasn’t getting sufficient care for his autism…Prosecutors said the two women plotted for a week to kill Alex, who suffered from a severe form of autism, because they thought he had received inadequate medical care, and wanted to put him out of his misery.

Now, where might they have gotten the idea that an acceptable response to suffering is killing the sufferer?

I suspect many will be horrified–not by the killing but the method, and the unavailability of “death with dignity” euthanasia. Indeed, I recall when Canadian farmer Robert Latimer murdered his 12 year-old daughter Traci because she had cystic fibrosis. Rather than condemning the monster, many Canadians asked, “Why couldn’t a doctor have done it for him?”


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