Family Sues After Doctor Kills Depressed Woman in Euthanasia, Doesn’t Tell Them

International   |   Wesley J. Smith   |   Sep 8, 2014   |   3:22PM   |   Brussels, Belgium

The invaluable Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a complaint against the brutal Belgian euthanasia law as violating human rights. From the ADF announcement:

Alliance Defending Freedom filed an application with the European Court of Human Rights Wednesday on behalf of Tom Mortier, who is challenging Belgium’s laws that allow doctor-prescribed death. Mortier’s mother was put to death by a doctor for “untreatable depression” even though she was not terminally ill.

Mortier did not find out what had happened until he received a telephone call the day after her death.

godelievaThe killer isn’t even a psychiatrist. He is an oncologist.

Such an atrocity should not be surprising. Belgian euthanasia is beyond “guidelines,” including the joint killings of elderly couples, psychiatric patients, and people with disabilities. And, let us not forget, it allows assisted suicide for children.

ADF makes the following human rights argument:

As the ADF application explains, “The institutions of the Council of Europe have shown consistent opposition to the legalization of assisted suicide and euthanasia…. [T]he only positive duty on a State is the positive duty to protect life.”

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The application argues that Belgium’s law, which now allows children to kill themselves as well, has gone too far: “the balance has shifted unacceptably in favour of personal autonomy at the expense of the important public interest and a State’s obligation under Article 2 (the right to life).”

I wish ADF–with which I have warm relations–nothing but the best in this effort. I will keep readers of HE updated as events transpire. Note: Wesley J. Smith, J.D., is a special consultant to the Center for Bioethics and Culture and a bioethics attorney who blogs at Human Exeptionalism.