Friday, June 24, 2016

Wesley J. Smith - Culture of Death: The Age of "Do Harm" Medicine.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition.

In 2001, Wesley Smith published one of the most influential books challenging the culture of death. At that time, EPC sold hundreds of copies of the book. Since then, many people have been waiting for Smith to update his book and now we have it.

Recently released, Wesley Smith has written an excellent defense of traditional ethics in his recent - Culture of Death: The Age of "Do Harm" Medicine. 

The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition (EPC) is selling Culture of Death for $35 (Link) (includes shipping). Indicate that the $35 is for Culture of Death which has 333 pages and is published by Encounter books. 

Wesley Smith was interviewed by Bioedge about the new edition of Culture of Death. Here is some of what he said in the interview:

Smith: There is less respect for human equality and the sanctity of life in healthcare generally, I fear, and not only in the U.S. Indeed, I changed the subtitle of the book to “The Age of ‘Do Harm’ Medicine” because it now grapples with developments outside the United States as well as in my own country. We are all connected, so that what happens in Canada impacts Australia, what happens in the USA can have a pull on South Africa.

I have observed in the 15 years since the first edition of Culture of Death, that throughout the developed world and the West we see a terrible and increasing disrespect for the intrinsic value of the most weak and vulnerable among us. Euthanasia has spread like a stain and grown increasingly toxic. For example, in Belgium medicalized killing is now coupled with organ harvesting—including of the mentally ill. Health care rationing, which is blatant and invidious medical discrimination, is a growing threat. Advocacy continues to discard the dead donor rule in organ transplant medicine, even proposals for the live-harvesting of patients with profound cognitive disabilities.

If there is a “bright spot,” it is to be found among the medical professionals—doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physicians assistants, etc.—who continue to resist these utilitarian bioethical agendas and work in the trenches of clinical medicine with an ongoing commitment to the wellbeing and equal value of all patients.

Wesley J. Smith
It’s a difficult problem. The popular media is increasingly tabloid in its approach to reporting. It is the rare story that informs the general population about the threatening and radical ideas emanating from the academy, in the professional journals, and from among the leaders of the bioethical/medical establishments.

One of the purposes of the book is to help readers be forewarned of the potential threat they or their loved ones could face in a clinical setting—note, I don’t say will, but could—to enable them to mount a defense should an attempt be made to push a vulnerable patient out of the lifeboat.

Ironically, the media can be very helpful in such circumstances, because while the journalistic sector does a terrible job generally of reporting about bioethical issues—and are very boosting of assisted suicide—they often cast klieg lights on individual cases of medical oppression against particular patients, which can personalize the issue in such a way as to gain the attention and sympathy of the general public.

Smith: Assisted suicide and euthanasia are going to continue to be bioethical hot potatoes. Medical futility. Protecting medical conscience rights for health care professionals who wish to adhere to Hippocratic values is going to be huge internationally. I mean, if we are not careful, in 20 years one may not be able to find a doctor who would not be willing to kill you under some circumstances, which I find a very frightening prospect.

The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition is selling - Culture of Death - for a $25 donation  (link) Culture of Death is published by Encounter books and has 333 pages.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

For a government to sell a license to an individual to kill someone else would widely be seen as a horrible idea, and very wrong.
Strangely, the Trudeau government has now licensed anyone to kill anyone else, and has provided very broad and fuzzy criteria as to circumstances within which killing of the other is not punishable.
If one seeks to be killed by a doctor, the doctor is compensated by the government, thereby placing the doctor in a moral conflict of interest! There are even punishments for doctors who refuse to kill, or to refer another doctor for killing.
This, indeed is Culture of Death in practice, government sponsored and funded.
There are severe punishments in most jurisdictions for anyone killing a dog or a cat, yet the Trudeau cadre has rammed this obnoxious legislation through Parliament and the Senate, into law, permitting anyone to kill anyone. Unbelievable!