Assisted suicide would court a culture of death

Bill Martin, advocating “medically assisted death,” voices frustration at the government for requesting a six-month extension.

Re: ‘Unhappy with delay,’ (The NEWS, Jan. 7).

Bill Martin, advocating “medically assisted death,” voices frustration at the government for requesting a six-month extension to draft new laws on doctor-assisted suicide. Martin states: “I don’t know why (the delay). I could write (new legislation) in a day, even the legal part of it.”

I find it a foreboding spectre that someone could be so cavalier about such a controversial and incredibly dangerous issue. I am frightened by the ‘culture of death’ that we Canadians are courting  with the murder of unborn children and now the demand for a “right-to-die” law.

Since we have an innate human compassion for those who suffer there is a huge emotional force behind this issue, but we cannot allow ourselves to be blinded by emotion in the face of seeking to make euthanasia a fundamental human right enshrined in our law. The Dutch and Belgian experiments with euthanasia should loom large in our discussions.

While there have been reported abuses in these nations despite the supposed “safeguards,” the concern for me is the direction the issue takes on. The direction in both Holland and Belgium is towards more reasons for euthanasia and the growing reality of non-voluntary euthanasia. We are returning to the barbarism of ancient pagan Rome with its infanticide and exposure walls.

Make no mistake, this is a slippery slope that, if followed, will in time make Canada into a barbaric nation not a more compassionate one. And it will affect each of us personally as we begin to lose good doctors who want nothing to do with assisting patients to die. And remember, the right to refuse medical treatment is entirely different from the “right to die.” Accepting the former in no way obligates us to make a law for the latter.

We as human beings are intrinsically valuable because we are made in the image of the biblical God and as such we do not have the right to take the life of anyone, ours or anyone else.

Mike GroenewoldParksville

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