November 14, 2012

Physician-Assisted Suicide – For Real?

The election is over and we know what the vote result is in the Massachusetts vote on Physician-Assisted Suicide proposition 2. I may as well state now that I am not in favor of this proposition in any way, shape, or form. I am not a resident of Massachusetts, but this will possibly be on the ballot in other states in the years ahead and I feel it is necessary to speak out now.

It was narrowly defeated thank goodness. At least this will give other states pause for rushing this to a vote. Is the battle over? Don't count on it as there may be an appeal to the state supreme court and if the justices do like they have in some other states on other issues, it may be necessary to take it to the US Supreme Court to have the vote upheld.

This is one reason I am grateful to David Mendosa for using the words of Pastor Martin Niemöller in his blog, on page 2. I have been searching for this for many years and it sure fits this situation.

Pastor Martin Niemöller said it:

First, they came for the socialists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.

One piece of information that I have not seen in the discussion is the crimes committed by unethical physicians and other medical personnel that take the lives of people that are ill and may or may not be near death. With these crimes happening, and physician-assisted suicide made legal, prosecuting these offenders will be made much more difficult, if not almost impossible.

The laws may be well crafted, but they may be sidestepped quite easily by those that are greedy and think this will limit continued rising healthcare costs. Under the current healthcare law, the incentives may be there for more physicians to practice euthanasia on a much larger scale rather than spend the money possibly to extend life. They will argue that quality of life was the deciding issue when in fact it may not be.

In a discussion, David Mendosa asked me to think about what many people do to their pets when the pet is seriously ill or near the end of life. Yes, I have had pets put down when they had a disease with no cure possible, but most of the time I let nature take its course. Animals are one thing, but when is comes to humans, several religions view human life as given by God and not to be taken by anyone including suicide. This seems like a conflict to many people and I will not argue the point. I am against medical personnel being able legally to assist suicide or having any right for euthanasia.

I will continue to speak out against physician-assisted suicide or medical euthanasia as practiced in many hospitals. Yes, I have said it, and know that many doctors and nurses practice medical euthanasia and report it as adverse events or often don't even report anything about it. Under the Affordable Care Act, hospitals will have monetary incentives to reduce medical costs – hence the medical euthanasia topic is on the table and will be practiced to reduce costs and reap the monetary rewards offered by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.


David Mendosa said...

Dear Bob,

I'm glad I could help your post on Physician-assisted Suicide with the quote and the consideration of how we treat pets. Good post!

I do want to make it clear that I don't favor physician-assisted suicide for myself, when the time comes, or for others, although I don't strongly oppose it. I do favor making pain-killers much more readily available for people at the end of their lives, when needed.



Bob Fenton said...

Thank you David, This is one reason I will keep speaking out about physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia. Doctors are even using rationing to promote both. This scares the dickens out of me.