Canadian Supreme Court Legalizes Assisted Death

Yesterday the Canadian province of British Columbia has voted to allow " Physcician Assisted Death’s". I was listening to the CBC report and the advocates talked about this as people being allowed" to “die with dignity”.

Ok, I’m confused. How does this type of death give a person more dignity? Seriously, is natural death any LESS dignified? Does anyone have any insight into this type of thinking???

It is NOT the physicians job to take on the role of GOD ALMIGHTY.

Another nation has fallen for the Big Lie.

But it’s unconstitutional to deny suicide!

Sorry, but it’s God’s decision when we die. Not ours, and not the doctor.

The problem with having a Bill of Rights, and employing an institution to safeguard and protect those rights is that minority groups are able to claim that their particular issue is covered by the Bill. Since the Court can only apply the Law as it is, it is often forced to extend it far beyond what the original writers of the Bill foresaw.

Then it is up to the elected Government to deal with the situation and roll back the “rights” if that’s what the electorate want.

So now it’s up to us - the electorate - to have our voices heard.

Leave it to Canada to be continental leaders in intrinsically evil acts… :frowning:

All I can say is that you Americans are lucky that we’re not a part of your country otherwise you’d have Obama re-elected for sure! :(:(:frowning:

Well said.

The decision was based on the fact that in BC suicide is not illegal.

Since, I, a physically able person can legally kill myself, but a disabled person (ie the woman with ALS who petitioned the Court) can not do so by him/herself, the law that made assisted suicide illegal was judged to be discriminatory.

Now the only thing that Parliament needs to do is make suicide illegal for everyone.

Here’s a news story to abide by forum rules:

A terminally-ill woman has the right to have a doctor-assisted suicide following a landmark ruling Friday by a B.C. Supreme Court judge who found current right-to-die laws are discriminatory and unconstitutional.

Justice Lynn Smith granted Gloria Taylor, who has late-stage ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, a constitutional exemption to proceed with physician-assisted suicide.

The ruling does not immediately open the door for assisted suicide for anyone who wants one. Smith placed a 12-month suspension on her ruling to give Parliament time to write new legislation, or for the anticipated appeals that will be brought forward by the provincial and federal governments that argued against changing the current laws.

Go figure that BC would first find that it’s constitutional to outlaw polygamy, then strike down a ban on assisted suicide (which is really just a euphemism for “consented murder”).

I can’t wait to hear the NDP’s response to that. I’m imagining something hilarious, along the lines of “How dare the Conservatives tell us that we can’t kill ourselves when we want to”.

I think you’re being a little harsh on yourself!.:console: I’m originally from Florida, and the Canadian snowbirds we had every winter always seemed nice!:smiley:

Hi Phemie. I’m curious, do the Canadian physicians pledge something similar to the American Hippocratic Oath? The first words that pop into my mind when I think of these situations are “Do no harm” and “nonmaleficence”. Thanks:)

:eek::eek::eek: Oh no!!! Anything but that!!!

That argument would seem to be solid grounds for an appeal. I am not sure about the legal tradition of Canada, but here in the US a person can not consent to be victim of a crime.

I disagree.

If you think all American doctors take an oath that includes that you’re mistaken. Different Med Schools use different oaths. According to a 1993 study published in ***The Journal of Clinical Ethics, “***in a survey of 150 U.S. and Canadian medical schools, only 14 percent of modern oaths prohibit euthanasia, 11 percent hold convenant with a deity, 8 percent foreswear abortion, and a mere 3 percent forbid sexual contact with patients—all maxims held sacred in the classical version.” Here’s one

Hippocratic Oath: Modern Version I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:
I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.
I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures [that] are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.
I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.
I will not be ashamed to say “I know not,” nor will I fail to call in my colleagues when the skills of another are needed for a patient’s recovery.
I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know. Most especially must I tread with care in matters of life and death.** If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.**
I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person’s family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick.
I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.
I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.
If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.
—Written in 1964 by Louis Lasagna, Academic Dean of the School of Medicine at Tufts University, and used in many medical schools today.

I guess there’s no way to know for sure and I’m sure Amercian politics would be quite different if Canada was a part of the States. That said, they did a poll a few weeks back and Obama currently has an 88% approval rating among Canadians:

When we consider that Canada is almost the size of California and would have almost 60 electoral college votes and Obama would win every one of them… there’s just no way Romney could pull away with a victory against something like that…

I had asked the question when I posted this story, but does anyone have any idea why the proponants of assisted suicide say that this way brings “dignity” to the death process? I don’t understand this.

It depends on how you define ‘dignity’.

I’m pretty surprised no one in the country has brought up the fact that the Supreme Court of Canada has already ruled against euthanasia. Common law is supposed to be about precedence, folks

Only 'cos most of them know very little about American politics.:stuck_out_tongue:

Really Canadians are quite conservative.

I am not sure how the courts of Canada relate to one another, but the 1993 ruling was argued before Justice Lynn Smith and she apparently declared it irrelevant.

Because I don’t understand Canada’s judicial system, I will quote from a news blog

Government lawyers argued that the Rodriguez case had already determined the issue for Canadians and that the 1993 decision was binding on all other Canadian courts. Not so, said the learned judge.

That was then, and much has changed, according to Madam Justice Lynn Smith of British Columbia’s Supreme Court who handed down a 395-page decision yesterday, (Carter v. Canada) declaring that Canada’s criminal law banning assisted suicide is contrary to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and therefore unconstitutional.

The proliferation of legal assisted suicide has brought with it scientific scrutiny of data available from suicide clinics world-wide, research that tends to dismiss the concerns that were voiced during the Rodriguez case and repeated by government lawyers in Carter v. Canada.

Madam Justice Smith determined that Parliament can create a system of assisted suicide that will take into account appropriate safeguards to protect the vulnerable and those with mental illness.

In addition, the interpretive provisions of the Charter have grown and developed in Charter cases decided by the Supreme Court of Canada since 1993, introducing legal concepts that gave Madam Justice Smith additional tools in the exercise of assessing the constitutionality of a law.

I can’t quite grasp what you all mean when you say it is God’s decision when we die. He gave us free will correct? If he preordained how I was going to die wouldn’t that take away MY freewill. While ultimately God knows how and when we will die, who is to say it isn’t in God’s plan for someone to die peacefully in a hospital bed due to a physician assisted death rather than die suffering from a terminal cancer?

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