Euthanasia: Demolition of conscience rights

From ethicist Margaret Somerville at MercatorNet:

I’ve been puzzling about why Canadian “progressive” values advocates, particularly those passionately in favour of the legalization of euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide (“physician-assisted death” (PAD)), are so adamant in trying to force healthcare professionals and institutions who have conscience or religious objections to these procedures to become complicit in them.

Complicity would occur if objecting individual physicians were forced to provide “effective referrals” or objecting institutions were forced to allow PAD in their facilities. An “effective referral” is defined by the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons as “a referral made in good faith, to a non-objecting, available, and accessible physician or other health-care provider.”

In general, progressive values advocates claim to give priority to rights to individual autonomy, choice, control over what happens to oneself, and tolerance for those who believe differently. Yet in relation to respect for the freedom of conscience and, where relevant, religious belief, of physicians or institutions who oppose PAD, none of these principles seem to be applied. Why?

Reality check: Why? Because progressives want people who are not willing to kill patients out of health care. This is like abortion except now we are the fetuses. Make no mistake, it will not be possible to limit it to people who, in some sense “want to die” any more than abortion could be limited to rape, incest or physical deformity.

It’s enough if one’s death can benefit someone with the power to bring it about. Most people actually know this, but have chosen to dance around the point. When confronted by someone whose conscientious objection points to that fact, the will just want that person out of health care.

Removing the traditional Jewish and Christian voices from health care will transform it beyond recognition, into a system more akin to a large animal management system. The euthanasia end of Brave New World.

BNW, curiously, did touch on that topic back in the 1920s, when progressivism was just trying its wings. Lots of room to grow.

The most disheartening spectacle will be church run medical facilities bowing to the pressure as an alternative to just closing before they kill.

See also: Religious Nones are the largest group in the US Democratic Party This is relevant to how seriously ethical objections to killing patients, based in traditional assumptions abut human beings, will be taken.

  • H

    Sommerville makes the point that seeing people dying around them under the helpful guidance of friendly physicians, simply reinforces the worldview of those who favor euthanasia. After all, if people dying from assisted suicide becomes commonplace, then “clearly” there is nothing wrong with the process. It’s completely normal (routine at least).

    Additionally, I wonder if guilt is a factor here as well. Is it possible that some of the PAD advocates have at least some slight reservations/pangs of conscience (if at a sub-conscious level) concerning euthanasia and wish to share the resulting guilt? This is, after all, a fairly typical human tactic to ease the discomfort of “ethically ambivalent” situations?

  • Millie_Woods

    I’m just hoping to make it over the finish line before there’s a bounty on us

    • Justin St.Denis

      No fuckin’ kidding! My sentiments exactly.

  • k1

    there are many CANADIAN doctors who are quite willing to do the bidding of ORGANIZED CRIME
    …makes you feel safe don’t it.

  • k1

    Are 2 doctors checking each others power?
    That is NO CHECK!
    A check is 1 a doctor and the 2nd from a different disapline having no business connection with doctors
    Seems to me like this is…