The culture of death is like the universe: It never stops expanding. Once killing is accepted as an answer to human suffering, there are always new fields for the COD to inhabit.
In the Netherlands, euthanasia is supposed to be strictly restricted (Please, make it stop! My ribs hurt from laughing.) to mentally competent people who repeatedly request to be killed, and even then, only when it is the only way to prevent suffering. (I can’t stop! It hurts!)
That’s always been crap. For example, infanticide of seriously disabled and terminally ill babies are smiled at by the society (see the “Groningen Protocol” infanticide bureaucratic checklist). Moreover, ”termination without request or consent” has always been imposed by some Netherlander doctors with mostly no–or at most,scant–consequence.
Now, current consent is being tossed in the body bag. Dutch doctors are now allowed to kill dementia patients who have not requested to die and can’t consent, if they signed a kill-me-later request while competent. From the DutchNews.nl story:
The guidelines for performing euthanasia on people with severe dementia have been relaxed a little so that patients can be helped to die even if they incapable of making their current feelings known, the justice and health ministries said on Thursday.
However, they will have to have signed a euthanasia declaration with their family doctor before they became seriously ill to be considered for help in dying, broadcaster Nos reports.
So much for repeated requests made by competent patients. But then, protective guidelines aren’t meant to really protect, but give false assurance.
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Alzheimer’s often causes loved ones and medical personnel more suffering than the patient. (Believe me, I know.) How tempting it will be for the MD to put the patient out of the family’s misery.
Or society’s, given the cost of care.
LifeNews.com 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.