Euthanizing the Disabled

As nations like the United States and the United Kingdom lose their Christian foundation and values, they also begin to lose their value for human life. The slippery slope started with legalizing abortions followed by doctor assisted suicide. Now, the UK High Court has granted a British mother the legal right euthanize her 12 year old daughter.

Charlotte Fitzmaurice Wise had petitioned the High Court for the right to murder her 12 year old daughter Nancy. The child was born blind and diagnosed with hydrocephalus, meningitis and septicemia. Nancy has never been able to walk, talk, eat or drink on her own and supposedly lives in constant pain. The girl took all of her food, liquids and medications through tubes inserted into her stomach. She needed constant care 24/7.

Wise was a nurse, but gave up her job to care for her daughter. In her petition to the High Court, she claimed that the pain medications including morphine no longer worked on her daughter and that she, Wise, could no longer bear.

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In August, the High Court in the UK granted Wise permission to murder her daughter. It was the first time in the country’s history that euthanasia was approved through the medical system for someone who was not on life support or suffering from a fatal illness.

Two weeks after receiving court approval, Wise ordered the hospital staff to remove Nancy’s feeding tubes and to withhold all nutritional fluid from the girl. The report did not say how long it took for Nancy to die, but letting someone starve to death is extremely cruel and inhumane. It’s not a quick death like removing life saving devices such as a breathing tube or heart machine.

News of the court’s ruling and Nancy’s death were intentionally withheld from the press until recently. When news got out, criticisms followed. Disability activist and Christian Joni Erickson Tada warned that this could open the door to anyone being granted permission to end the life of a loved one solely on the subjective reason of quality of life.

Tada told the media:

“The judge’s statement sets a precedent that quality of life now becomes a measuring rod as to whether or not a child with a disability should live or die. That’s horrific. That’s terrifying.”

“In the future, I wonder how many other subjective issues may sway another judge’s opinion in the life of somebody like Nancy, or perhaps even less disabled physically and mentally than Nancy. This swings open a door to similar actions against other people with disabilities simply based on the fact of distress, the inconvenience, the cost, the discomfort, all of which are subjective issues.”

“I have many, many friends, whose functioning ability, is much like Nancy’s: they can not talk, eat, walk, they are on ventilators. They are happy people. Now we are going to look at somebody whose functioning ability is [limited] and say that their life is not worth living?”

“What is heartbreaking about it is that the mother, in her statement, said that she will never be able to forgive herself. That’s a terrible burden for a woman to carry. It seems to me that the only people that were speaking into the mother’s life were right-to-die advocates, and I am convinced that [if] she had the proper resources, the proper support, the proper peer counseling, the proper networking with other parents, it would have been a different story.”

In addition to Tada, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network also issued criticism about the High Court’s ruling:

“The media coverage surrounding this case has been extraordinarily irresponsible, implying that the child’s disability should justify a decision that her life was unworthy of living. ASAN is concerned that the voices of people with disabilities with similar support needs were not heard in this discussion. Many people with disabilities who utilize feeding tubes or experience other conditions similar to those Nancy Fitzmaurice face live in the community and do not feel that their lives are not worth living.”

Cassy Fiano with Live Action News also wrote that the precedent set by the court could lead to the euthanasia of thousands upon thousands of disabled kids at the hands of their parents all based on the poor quality of life. He wrote:

“We cannot allow it to become acceptable to kill a person because they are disabled, or because someone feels they can decide whether their quality of life is good enough to merit their continued living.”

I know this happened in the United Kingdom, but if you look at the history of liberalism, including the decline of the Christian church in the UK you will discover that America seems to follow those trends about 10-20 years later. Once the door has been opened for parents to murder their disabled children in the UK, it won’t be long until liberals here in America force the same doors open here. It’s just a matter of time.

Once parents get the right to murder their disabled children because of their quality of life, then what’s next? Will parents get the right to murder their newborns after they are born simply because they are not wanted or an inconvenience? What about a parent or grandparent whose health is failing and becomes a burden to the family? Will they be able to decide to just withhold food and water from them and let them starve to death like 12 year old Nancy?

Where will it end?

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