An advertisement taken out in a major newspaper in the Netherlands by more than 200 Dutch doctors begins, “[Assisted suicide] for someone who cannot confirm he wants to die? No, we will not do that. Our moral reluctance to end the life of a defenseless man is too great. "
The doctors, many of whom currently serve as assisted-suicide providers, are objecting to the unchecked growth of euthanasia in their country, where people who have reduced mental capacity due to dementia are being euthanised...
Alarm bells began to sound for these doctors a few years ago when an elderly woman was euthanized against her will.
The 80-year-old suffered from dementia. She had allegedly earlier requested to be euthanized when “the time was right” but in her last days expressed her desire to continue living.
Despite changing her mind about ending her life, her doctor put a sedative in the her coffee. When that wasn’t enough, the doctor enlisted the help of family members to hold down the struggling, objecting patient so that she could administer the lethal injection...
In 2016, the Dutch doctor was cleared of wrongdoing by a euthanasia oversight panel. The chairman of that panel expressed hope that the case will go to court – not so the doctor can be prosecuted but so a court can set a precedent on how far doctors may go in such cases.
Troubling new legislation
That case remains fresh in the minds of the Dutch as ‘groundbreaking’ new legislation is being floated by the country’s lawmakers.
Legislators in the Netherlands have now proposed the ‘Completed Life Bill’ that would allow anybody age 75 or older to be euthanized even if they are healthy.
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