“Assisted dying” means euthanasia and assisted suicide

Dr. Peter Saunders, campaign director for the Care not Killing Alliance UK, wrote in in an article for the Economist magazine August 23, 2018 issue:

“Assisted dying is a euphemism.

… It is also contrary to every historic code of medical ethics including the Hippocratic Oath, the Declaration of Geneva, the International Code of Medical Ethics and the World Medical association’s Statement of Marbella.

The line between assisted suicide and euthanasia  is very thin. If a doctor places lethal drugs in a person’s hands it is assisted suicide, but on his tongue it is euthanasia. If the doctor sets up a lethal syringe-driver and pushes it himself it is euthanasia, but if the patient applies pressure or flicks the switch it is assisted suicide.”

Dr. Saunders mentions as well the many risks inherent in legalizing euthanasia and assisted suicide. For one, vulnerable persons may feel like a burden on family and caregivers. An examination of the annual reports on assisted suicide from the states of Washington and Oregon shows that fear of being a burden is one of the factors in assisted suicide requests.

Protection for vulnerable persons can only be achieved by prohibiting these practices. We can all be vulnerable at some point in our lives. 

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