Friday, 22 October 2010

Euthanasia tit bits

Killing other people can never be a good thing. 

Particularly disturbing when the killing is carried out by those who have sworn the hypocratic oath.  Indeed, one of its key clauses of the classic version is:

"I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect."

Of course these days, the prohbitions on euthanasia and abortion in the oath have largely been abandoned in the versions most often used in today's medical schools.

All the same, the most disturbing stories about euthanasia are surely those where legislation, or even in its absence the prevalence of the culture of death, encourages or allows others to think they can simply take lives at their own whim.

Take these stories:
  • a high proportion of deaths in Belgium officially classed as euthanasia did not involve the consent of the patient, did not involve a doctor (as officially required) but were simply the decision of the nurse involved;
  • actor Sir Michael Caine has publicly admitted to pressuring a doctor to kill his father even though his father without consulting either his father or his mother;
  • the number of deaths attributed to euthanasia in the Netherlands continues to rise sharply, with most decisions seemingly being made by physicians, not patients.
Australia needs no further spur along this path.

1 comment:

R. J. said...

Of couse the average Australian "conservative" (i.e. Howard / Abbott sycophant) would take one look at these remarks on euthanasia in Belgium and the Netherlands and say: "But Belgium and the Netherlands are monarchies! What can possibly be wrong with the culture of any country that's a monarchy?"