Ask Canada: what happened to those euthanasia safeguards?

It doesn’t stop with “the terminally ill”. Assisted suicide and euthanasia become legal excuses for murder. Sound drastic? That’s exactly what happened in Canada. 

Canada is poster child for what happens when you legalise assisted suicide and euthanasia. As Michael Cook exemplifies with a recent court case in Quebec, it takes almost no time at all for legalised assisted suicide and euthanasia to be expanded to include the non-terminally ill:

The ink was hardly dry on Canada’s right-to-die legislation before lawsuits began to expand eligibility for euthanasia to those who are not terminally ill. And now a high-profile case in Quebec could lead to euthanising patients with dementia.

On February 20 Michel Cadotte was arrested by Montreal police after a post appeared on his Facebook page: “I’ve cracked, nobody asked how I’m doing, but now you know, I’ve consented to her request of assistance in dying, I’m waiting for the police.”

Cadotte, 56, was paying a visit to his wife, Jocelyne Lizotte, 60, who had Alzheimer’s disease and was living in a nursing home. He took a pillow and smothered her to death. He had been caring for her since 2006 and was exhausted.

She had reportedly wanted to be euthanised. However, even though Canada allows euthanasia (and Quebec also has its own law), a patient has to be legally competent in order to lodge a request for “medical aid-in-dying”. Jocelyne did not qualify.

Cadette’s actions are not being considered “murder” – they are being called a “mercy killing”. Instead of reeling in horror at what legalising euthanasia has caused, Quebec officials are actually “considering a change in legislation to allow people to make binding advance directives for euthanasia before they slip into dementia.”

It is incredible. Barely since the legislation was enacted, there comes a push to expand it, to use it as justification for “doing away with” those who have a perfectly normal life expectancy!

As one doctor noted, legalising euthanasia and assisted suicide has completely destroyed Canada’s motivation and reasoning to provide the needed care for any patient, terminally ill or not:

Dr Catherine Ferrier, the president of the Physicians’ Alliance against Euthanasia, told STAT that she was surprised that the Cadotte case was being used to broaden the scope of eligibility for euthanasia. “When I heard this story, I thought, ‘This has nothing to do with my euthanasia work, it has to do with my geriatrics work,’” she said. “It has to do with providing proper care, it has to do with providing proper support for caregivers so they don’t flip out. … How come the whole world isn’t saying, ‘Let’s look after people properly?’”

Safe guards, strict qualification guidelines, and protections for vulnerable groups are mere ploys. Once legalised, there is no way to ensure that assisted suicide and euthanasia will not be used to take the lives of any individual in any state of health.

This is what Canada is facing. This is what happens when you legalise euthanasia and assisted suicide. This is what we MUST prevent from happening in Australia.