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The Culture of Death Is Like the Universe


Once set in motion, it never stops expanding.

Euthanasia boosters, as we know, are so full of baloney. To get the death agenda adopted, they promise the moon, that medicalized killing will be strictly limited, and always restricted to competent adults. Then, once society widely accepts killing as an answer to suffering, the age limits drops — because how in the name of compassion can a (now) “right” to die be limited to competent adults?

Belgium has already legalized assisted suicide for children deemed, by their death doctor, mature enough to decide. Now the Dutch Pediatric Association wants to go there too, where the current age limit — once 16 — is now 12. But that’s not low enough! From the deVolkskrant story (Google translation):

The Dutch Association of Pediatrics (NVK) comes to the position after intense debate. If a child is incompetent, parents should be able to consult with the doctor to decide on euthanasia…

The 12-year-age limit for euthanasia is a problem for pediatricians: they see in practice that even younger children are often well able to see the consequences of their decisions.

Still, doctors are not allowed to do anything when a child between 1 and 12 years asks for euthanasia. The NVK therefore proposes to include “real mental competence” as a benchmark, rather than chronological age.

For children who can not make the decision, the physician in consultation with the parents can decide. This happens already in children between 0 and 1, but doctors believe it should also be possible for incapacitated children under 12 years.

Two points. Infanticide is legally (still) murder in Netherlands and yet, as the story admits, killing sick and disabled babies is an accepted part of Netherlander euthanasia practice.

You see, when it comes to euthanasia, “protective guidelines” and legal boundaries soon don’t matter. Netherlander pediatricians and neonatologists kill babies in their cribs without consequence, proving that protective guidelines aren’t worth the time it takes to read them. (See the Groningen Protocol, a published bureaucratic check list for deciding which babies can be killed.)

Second, note that the “suffering” would not have to be a terminal illness, which is not a required criterion for euthanasia in Netherlands. This means a depressed child with disabilities, who feels isolated and marginalized, could ask for euthanasia and be killed! Perhaps even a mentally ill child deemed, by a death doctor, sufficiently “competent” to decide that life is not worth living.

Image credit: Gouwenaar (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Cross-posted at The Corner


Wesley J. Smith

Chair and Senior Fellow, Center on Human Exceptionalism
Wesley J. Smith is Chair and Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism. Wesley is a contributor to National Review and is the author of 14 books, in recent years focusing on human dignity, liberty, and equality. Wesley has been recognized as one of America’s premier public intellectuals on bioethics by National Journal and has been honored by the Human Life Foundation as a “Great Defender of Life” for his work against suicide and euthanasia. Wesley’s most recent book is Culture of Death: The Age of “Do Harm” Medicine, a warning about the dangers to patients of the modern bioethics movement.



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