Human Exceptionalism

Quebec Euthanasia: Journalism Malpractice 3

Canada’s premier national newspaper, the Globe and Mail, has now also committed journalistic malpractice describing Quebec’s euthanasia bill. It accurately reports that the law would allow doctors to commit euthanasia–e.g., directly kill the patient–but it continues the pretense that the lethality would be limited to the “dying:”  From the story:

Quebec has entered unchartered waters in becoming the first province to propose legislation that allows a dying patient with an incurable disease “at an advanced state of irreversible decline” and suffering “unbearable physical and psychological pain” to decide their moment of death. Strict protocol and criteria are outlined in the bill that calls for continuous medical supervision of patients who must meet specific conditions in order to be eligible for end-of-life treatment. For instance, a paraplegic, despite suffering intolerable pain, would not be admissible.

False! The conditions are not specifically identified. The guidelines aren’t “strict,” and they are certainly not limited to the “dying.” Nor must the suffering be a result “unbearable phyisical AND psychological pain.” Rather, as you will see below, it is “unbearable physical OR psychological pain,” a hugely different thing! 

Once again, here are the guidelines as written in Bill 52:

26. Only a patient who meets the following criteria may obtain medical aid in dying:

(1) be of full age, be capable of giving consent to care and be an insured person within the meaning of the Health Insurance Act (chapter A-29);

(2) suffer from an incurable serious illness;

(3) suffer from an advanced state of irreversible decline in capability; and

(4) suffer from constant and unbearable physical or psychological pain which cannot be relieved in a manner the person deems tolerable.

Paraplegics could most certainly qualify: It could be deemed an “incurable illness” that has led to “irreversible decline in capability” and which causes “unbearable physical or psychological pain” that cannot be relieved “in a manner the person deems tolerable.”

If the authors wanted the law to be limited to dying patients, it would say so in the bill. It doesn’t. Stating otherwise is journalistic malpractice. 

Most Popular

U.S.

G-File Mailbag: The Results of a Bad Idea

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Including those of you just standing there eating Zarg nuts), I had a bad idea. It wasn’t a terrible idea, like asking a meth addict ... Read More
Politics & Policy

How Democrats Can Blow It in 2020

Donald Trump probably can’t win the 2020 presidential election, but the Democrats can lose it. What I mean is that in a contest between Trump and a generic Democrat, Trump would almost surely lose if the current political climate holds through 2020. According to a Fox News poll this week, 38 percent of ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Collusion Scenario

It has become an article of faith in some quarters on the right -- well, most -- that the Mueller investigation has found no evidence of collusion with Russia and has accordingly shifted gears to process crimes like lying to the FBI or obstruction of justice. Having decided that this must be true, many have ... Read More
Immigration

Democrats’ Border-Barrier Flip-Flop

Is steel more moral than concrete? House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California said last week that she and other Democrats consider a border wall “immoral.” But some of the same Democrats who decry President Donald J. Trump’s proposed concrete wall as a 30-foot-tall human-rights violation actually ... Read More