When the command to legalize euthanasia came down from the Canadian Supreme Court, suicide activists were ecstatic. At long last, they said, people suffering horribly would have the opportunity to “die with dignity” — that is, kill themselves. Not only that, they could kill themselves with the help of a physician, and the whole thing would be funded by the government. It was Progress, we were told. The recently-discovered yet unalienable right not to exist anymore was finally being respected by the courts.
But of course, the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide for those nearing the end of their lives — or at least those whose deaths could be “reasonably foreseen,” which permitted the Orwellian activists to label lethal injections and suicide assistance as “end of life care — was not nearly enough. This is despite the fact that the number of people who have decided to avail themselves of this service is staggeringly high: 1,982 deaths between June 17, 2016 and June 30, 2017.
It is not surprising that suicide is becoming more common than anyone expected. One Canadian judge has already indicated that a patient need not be terminal in order to qualify for killing — and one euthanized woman may have only had a bladder infection. There have been other suspect killings, as well. One disabled woman was even pressured to accept euthanasia. No one talks about them much, of course. Collateral damage is an expected side effect of euthanasia regimes. There will be many, many more in the years to come.
There are other problems, too. Christian physicians are being forced to defend their right not to participate in these suicides in court, with suicide activists seemingly determined to ensure that the healthy consciences of dissenting doctors are the first casualty of their new euthanasia regime. Other doctors are realizing that killing a person is far more difficult than they thought it would be — so difficult that many have requested that their names be removed from the list of physicians willing eliminate patients via “end of life care.”
Worst of all, this week the discussion about extending “suicide rights” to children resurfaced in an article in the Globe and Mail:
A Canadian Paediatric Surveillance Program (CPSP) survey, released Thursday, shows the frequency with which pediatricians are having exploratory conversations about, or fielding explicit requests for, medical assistance in dying (MAID). The findings could inform changes to federal legislation, and underscore the tension between an individual’s right to autonomy and society’s responsibility to protect the most vulnerable.
Of the 1,050 pediatricians who participated in the survey, 118 said that over the course of a year, they had MAID-related discussions with a total of 419 parents; most of the minors in question were children under the age of 13. When it came to explicit MAID requests, 45 doctors said they dealt with a total of 91 parents. Nearly half of the requests related to infants less than one month old.
Let that sink in for a moment. Nearly 50 parents approached doctors to find out whether they could have their newborn child killed. Infant children, it should go without saying, cannot give consent. But now that Canada’s Supreme Court and Parliament has given the medical system the task of killing people as well as healing them, some Canadian mothers and fathers have been emboldened to ask physicians if it would be possible to kill their infant sons or daughters.
Perhaps some of them heard about the Alberta woman who was given a suspended sentence for strangling her newborn and tossing him over the fence, with the judge citing the fact that Canada allows abortion throughout all nine months of pregnancy as one of the determining factors in that sentence. Maybe some of them, upon discovering that their child was afflicted with awful disabilities or horrible medical conditions, wish they’d simply had an abortion. Either way, we can expect this push to continue. Doctors can kill now — so the question will be why can’t they kill this one?
People have a tendency to forget about issues like assisted suicide and euthanasia once the political brouhaha has settled down and it vanishes from the headlines. But it is important to remember that the suicide activists aren’t done yet. They aren’t satisfied with the current borders of the euthanasia regime, and have said to anyone willing to listen that they intend to see it vastly expanded. The media is on their side — the overt hostility of radio interviewers towards anyone who disagrees with assisted suicide is nauseating to listen to. The time for vigilance is not over simply because euthanasia is now legal. Suicide activists want more.
Next, they’ll come for the children.