End of Life Care Includes Euthanasia in Quebec

Wesley J. Smith reports that Quebec has created a new right – the right to be euthanized with the help of a medical professional. Positive rights such as this law create obligations on others. In this case, every institution that provides medical and nursing care in the province is required to find a medical person to administer aid in dying. It also requires medical organizations and institutions, and nursing homes to offer classes in how to do this, even if they are run by church organizations. "Aid in dying" is defined as part of end of life care.

The law does not require individuals to provide the service, but Smith correctly points out that it's only a matter of time since that has been the path of other issues of conscience. In the U.S., pharmacists cannot opt out of filling prescriptions for abortifacients because the courts have ruled it's a right to have prescriptions filled and opting out presents a burden on the patient. The burden on the pharmacist isn't relevant. The state of Massachusetts requires all children's service organizations to open adoptions to same-sex couples, so Christian organizations who handled a great deal of the social services in the state have had to close their doors rather than violate their consciences.

The same will no doubt be true for Christian hospitals and nursing homes, and eventually for medical professionals, in Quebec.

Smith writes more about the spread of euthanasia law and how easily it has slipped into abuse.


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Melinda Penner