Australian think tank backs euthanasia

Michael Cook
27 Apr 2013
Reproduced with Permission

A new Australian think tank has issued a call for the legalisation of euthanasia and assisted suicide. Australia 21 released the summary of a roundtable conducted in January in Brisbane with a number of notables from around the country - many of whom were well-known euthanasia activitists.

"Legislation to legalise assisted dying should be enacted unless there are compelling reasons not to do so. The two major arguments against reform are: 1) concerns that the vulnerable in our community will be placed at greater risk, and 2) the theological view that the divinely conferred sanctity of human life should prevent the intentional taking of life. Neither of these arguments is, in our view, sufficient to resist reform."

Oddly enough, none of the participants in the seminar highlighted in the report even mentioned the theological view. The few dissenting voices mentioned the dangers of bracket creep, not religious dogmas. Dr David van Gend, a GP and lecturer in palliative medicine at the University of Queensland, wrote:

"If you are bringing in the machinery of mercy killing, you are corrupting two basic elements: firstly the social contract between the state and its most vulnerable citizens, who will not be claiming the right to die but will be accepting the duty to die. Secondly a change would corrupt the relationship between doctors and their patients."

For the full report, click here.