Wednesday, May 23, 2018

book review: it's not that simple

Title: It’s Not That Simple: Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide Today
Author: Jean Echlin, Ian Gentles
Publisher: The deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research
Date: 2015

When this book was written, Canada was in the midst of legalizing euthanasia an assisted suicide in Canada. Jean Echlin and Ian Gentles made a strong argument for the provision of fully adequate palliative care in Canada that has largely been ignored.

Echlin and Gentles do an excellent of tracing the history of euthanasia and assisted in the modern world and the multitude of abuses in jurisdictions that have gone this route.

This book was published before MAID – Medical Assistance In Dying – was made law in Canada, but they point to some of the ways jurisdictions were planning on abusing the system. [if there is a way to abuse a system, some will find a way]. The Quebec announced ahead of the new law that hospitals and palliative care institutions will not be allowed to opt out of offering euthanasian services. They are also moving in the direction of having doctors not identifying euthanasia as the cause of death, thus hiding the numbers of people impacted.
I am aware of at least one person walking into an Ontario Emergency Room and asking to be euthanized, fortunately, the staff was able to get the person the mental health bed they needed.

As the book suggests, we will see euthanasia and assisted suicide become the norm in Canada. We will see abuses – individuals who are “too expensive” to care for will be euthanized as we continue to devalue human life.

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