Monday, October 30, 2023

Euthanasia for Autism/Intellectual disabilities in the Netherlands

This article was published by National Review online on October 30, 2023.

Wesley Smith
By Wesley J Smith

The AP is reporting that a medical study found that autistic people and those with intellectual disabilities have been euthanized in the Netherlands. From the story:
Several people with autism and intellectual disabilities have been legally euthanized in the Netherlands in recent years because they said they could not lead normal lives, researchers have found.

The cases included five people younger than 30 who cited autism as either the only reason or a major contributing factor for euthanasia, setting an uneasy precedent that some experts say stretches the limits of what the law originally intended.
I never understand why people are surprised by these kinds of horror stories. Once a society decides that killing is an acceptable answer to suffering, what constitutes suffering sufficient to be made dead becomes highly elastic and stretches over time. This can even include loneliness, as I have written about before. The story describes the phenomenon:
Many of the patients cited different combinations of mental problems, physical ailments, diseases or aging-related difficulties as reasons for seeking euthanasia. Thirty included being lonely as one the causes of their unbearable pain. Eight said the only causes of their suffering were factors linked to their intellectual disability or autism — social isolation, a lack of coping strategies or an inability to adjust their thinking.
The unintended cruelty of euthanasia is becoming increasingly clear:
Dr. Bram Sizoo, a Dutch psychiatrist, was disturbed that young people with autism viewed euthanasia as a viable solution.

“Some of them are almost excited at the prospect of death,” Sizoo said. “They think this will be the end of their problems and the end of their family’s problems.” . . .

Tim Stainton, director of the Canadian Institute for Inclusion and Citizenship at the University of British Columbia, wonders if the same thing is happening in Canada, which arguably has the world’s most permissive euthanasia laws and which doesn’t keep the kinds of records that the Netherlands does.

“Helping people with autism and intellectual disabilities to die is essentially eugenics,” Stainton said.
Indeed. Now, add in the prospect of organ harvesting as a benefit to society and the acute danger to the vulnerable who can come — or be made — to think that their deaths will have greater value than their lives comes vividly into focus.

The media generally boost euthanasia/assisted suicide with puff stories that depict being killed as a form of empowerment. But not this time. Good on the AP for reporting on these horrible, but entirely predictable, cases of rank abandonment.


Vi said...

Sadly, people are playing right into this deception... :(

Alex Schadenberg said...

There is nothing in our current law to prevent euthanasia for autism in Canada. Autistic people are often very competent, but due to their life experience they are also more likely to be lonely and feeling abandoned by society.

Lorna said...

That is very true, Alex. As a mother to an intelligent person on the spectrum and friend to several others, society does push them away because they are different and unable to conform to society's norms. Personally I have found them to be very refreshing to be with as there is no superficiality to deal with. Conversations are interesting as they have deep knowledge in their areas of interest. They make loyal friends who stick with you over the years.

Kenneth Moore D D said...

Wow who would have thought,so sad that we let these kinds of horrific acts of wickedness get legislated into Law. God have mercy on us. Ken Moore DD

Vi said...

Amen, Kenneth Moore DD!

Kilowag said...

Well, Alex, what do you want? The vaccine manufacturers don't want any witnesses to testify!

Autism has been normalized as is what is happening right now with myocarditis for kids! Just saw a repulsive ad for "Sick Kids" hospital trying to pull it off.

Name should be Children's Hospital of Ontario anyway.

Alex Schadenberg said...

It isn't that easy. Autism has many different concerns and it isn't one condition.