A couple of news items from Wesley J. Smith:
In case you hadn't noticed, legalized assisted suicide is expanding. Vermont, for example, has it now. Vermont has an opt-out provision for institutions, and some are sorta kinda taking advantage of that provision. Unfortunately, to my mind, they are doing it in a half-hearted manner and are implying that they are opting out only temporarily while they contemplate how to "implement the law." Interesting phrase, isn't it? Makes it sound like they are obligated not to take advantage of the law's explicit opt-out provision. Or like they feel that way.
In related news, the Dutch are having a teeny bit of trouble finding enough doctors willing to kill Alzheimer's patients and others with dementia, and some people are getting up on their high horses to the effect that the doctors don't have the right to make up their own "legal interpretation." Actually, things are pretty horrible in Holland, but I don't think a doctor is technically required to bump off Grandma with Alzheimer's, so what's with the high horse about "making up the law"? The doctors can say no if they want. But of course that isn't enough for the culture of death. The culture of death says that death must be not only possible in theory but also available when desired. When desired by someone or other.
I hope the Vermont hospitals get a little more spine and really opt out of becoming death merchants.
Holland, always one of the avant garde countries for killing (Belgium being another), has also just declared, via its medical association, that infanticide is perfectly legitimate to put the baby out of the parents' misery, so to speak. You see, when babies are judged to be "life unworthy of life" and have either ventilator assistance or food and fluid withdrawn, the ensuing dying process will be quite traumatic for the parents. In the ventilator case, which is somewhat shorter, the baby will gasp for breath and so forth, which is very distressing to those watching. So we should just kill them faster by lethal injection for their parents' sake.
It will be legitimate for readers to ask why I bring these things up. Is it just to distress? Is it just to keep up my reputation as a purveyor of gloom or the site's reputation as a reporter of What's Wrong With the World?
There are two main reasons why I think it's important to keep reporting these things: First, many of them do affect or potentially affect American policy. Sometimes it may be a matter of a likely push for assisted suicide in your state, for example, and being prepared to counter it. And even what happens in other countries is coming here. The world is getting smaller and smaller, and what "bioethicists" are actually doing in Holland (such as infanticide) is what bioethicists are advocating in the United States. Moreover, "euthanasia" by agonizing dehydration for those with dementia is already a reality in the United States, so the idea that it should be able to be done more "humanely," by way of a living will request to be killed by lethal injection after one gets dementia, is in a mad sense the next logical step. We need to be prepared to fight both the slow death and the fast death right here.
Second, it's important to get a sense of the sweep of the pro-life movement. Right now in both Catholic and evangelical circles there is a tendency on the left to reduce this to abortion. I don't blame anyone for focusing on abortion. But the impression that the pro-life movement is just about abortion means this: It means that someone who wants to convince himself that it's okay to vote Democrat only has to fight his conscience on one front.
Perhaps it won't matter, practically. If you can get your conscience to allow you to vote for people who enthusiastically fund Planned Parenthood, which kills babies in the most direct and horrific ways imaginable, perhaps your conscience will have no problem with also supporting the side of the culture wars that is in favor of killing newborn babies, the old, and the disabled. But it's just as well to be clear about these things: The destruction of the right to life affects us all, from conception throughout life. Embrace the Party of Death and you are embracing the Party of Death for all of us. For any of us can become vulnerable and "unworthy."
So teach your children this. Teach your young people this in your Christian high schools and colleges and in your churches. Teach them just how high the stakes really are.