Suicide by Physician

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‘The Committee Heard From People Who Had Made Plans for Suicide’

Australia braces for more intentional killing, as Queensland appears set to join Victoria in embracing what we euphemistically term “assisted dying”: Queenslanders are set to find out this week whether [assisted suicide and/or lethal injection euthanasia] laws will be introduced by the Palaszczuk government. In March, a parliamentary health committee recommended Queensland legalise voluntary assisted dying for adults with advanced terminal medical conditions. … The committee, which began its inquiry in November 2018, gauged public opinion on the issue and found most Queenslanders were in favour of helping terminally ill people to die. The committee heard from people who had made plans for suicide in circumstances where they had a life-limiting illness or debilitating condition. It found a terminally-ill person Read More ›

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Making Something Lawful Creates a Market for It

The Australian state of Victoria made it lawful to commit assisted suicide last year. The number of those who have killed themselves since “voluntary assisted dying” became legal is more than four times higher than the Victorian government had anticipated. Xavier Symons reports : The Voluntary Assisted Dying Review Board’s first Report of Operations, released on Tuesday, provides information on how Victoria’s euthanasia legislation is being enacted, including details of how many people have been issued with a ‘VAD permit’, as well as information on some of the barriers preventing people from accessing the scheme.  According to the report, permits to access the lethal medication were issued to 70 patients between June 19, when the scheme first started, and December 31. Overall Read More ›

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Full-Bore Death on Demand Arrives in the West

The 1973 dystopian film Soylent Green featured several shocking moments, including overpopulation riots and men calling women “the furniture” required for sex. But the most disturbing scene showed Edward G. Robinson entering a euthanasia clinic, choosing to be put down rather than live with his existential anguish. What was once fiction is becoming reality. Assisted suicide, unthinkable then, is popular now. Since the movie was released, many have come to view human existence as a relative, rather than absolute, good. The sanctity of life ethic has been replaced by the drive to eliminate suffering, even if this requires eliminating the sufferer. And the raw power of this logic has led directly to suicide clinics and a right to death on demand—since no Read More ›

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Germany’s Highest Court Creates Right to ‘Self-Determined Death’

The logic of euthanasia/assisted suicide has always pointed towards a right to death-on-demand. Assisted-suicide activists deny it for reasons of expediency. But the logic is irrefutable. If there is a “right to die,” how can it be limited to restricting categories? Well, the Federal Constitutional Court, Germany’s highest judicial body, has gone there and without equivocation. In overturning a legal ban on “professional assisted suicide,” i.e., by doctors, the court ruled that there is virtually an unlimited right “to a self-determined death” — and to also receive help from others in achieving that end. From the AFP story (my emphasis): Judge Andreas Vosskuhle at the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe said the right to a self-determined death included “the freedom to take one’s life and seek Read More ›

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In Canada, No Need to be ‘End of Life’ in Order to End Life

The Canadian government wants legal homicide to be available for generally healthy, non-terminal persons. Canada wants a future where a physician will be expected to hand over a fatal overdose or perhaps even authorize a lethal injection for, literally, children. Read More ›
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Suicide Prevention Means Rejecting Suicide Assistance

A friend calls you up to let you know that she’s thinking of ending her life. What do you tell her? She’s getting older and has experienced a life-threatening (but not terminal) condition for many years. She feels beaten down, alone, and like she’s too great a burden for those who were once closest to her, but who’ve generally stopped visiting in recent years. She’s looking to you for good counsel. If you’re like most, you wouldn’t respond by affirming her hopelessness. If you’re like most, you wouldn’t respond by enthusiastically affirming her “right to die” or by encouraging her to pursue a means of suicide. Instead, you would recognize her vulnerability. Instead, you would strive to stand alongside her Read More ›