Wednesday, December 01, 2004

The Groningen Protocol

The Netherlands seems like some sort of super clean, white coated, white bearded and bespectadled doctor in a science fiction movie, always trying out the liberal recommendations in real life that are just rallying cries elsewhere. It makes sense, having actually adopted gay marriage, more or less legal drug use and assisted suicide for older people that they would also extend the so-called mercy of euthanasia to infants too young to make their own decisions. The link above is a report of this developement. Like so many liberal positions, when the proposal is presented in cool laboratory terms, devoid of feeling, with a sort of pseudo rationality lent by medical degrees and appropriate pomposity, the idea of killing infants seems, well, downright merciful. The trouble is that infants who have managed to survive, object to the practice, which some have tried to institute here. Here is the website for the disabled resistance

Their name, not dead yet, summarizes their point of view. Healthy and active people may think that life in a wheel chair, not being able to sit up or to ski or to do all of the things that those of us who are healthier or more able to, would be miserable. These people assure us that we are wrong about that. Life is full of meaning and enjoyment for even severely disabled people breathing with the help of ventilators.

There is a world of difference between killing someone and allowing someone to die. It is, forgive me, the difference between love and rape. A person, whether an infant or an adult, who really wants to die, will. A person who really wants to die does not need help. The help offered by the likes of a Dr. Kevorkian or the Groningen protocol , is a veiled shove over the precipice of a person who was merely thinking about their own death.

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