CHAPTER 112 — EUTHANASIA MOVEMENT: DEADLY ECHO OF THE ABORTION MOVEMENT
American Life League
We have to go stage by stage, with the living will, with the power of attorney, with the withdrawal of this, and of that; we have to go stage by stage. Your side would call that the 'slippery slope.'
Derek Humphry, founder of the Hemlock Society.
My Life Prayer
Oh, for more Quality
and less Quantity in Generation
Oh, for less Suff'ring
and more Wisdom in Termination.
Robert H. Williams, M.D.
All we want is death with dignity for just the hard cases the incurable, comatose vegetables. Maintaining these post-humans costs society billions of dollars per year and returns no benefits whatever.
Because we are achieving our goals, those people who oppose the right of people to control their own bodies are constantly spewing inaccurate propaganda about how we will soon have involuntary euthanasia in the United States.
This is obviously a ridiculous argument.
The Ultimate Goal.
"But we didn't think it would go that far."
"It went that far the very first time
you condemned an innocent human being."
Conversation in the American motion picture "Judgment at Nuremburg."
The members of the euthanasia movement, many of whom were leaders in the abortion movement, know the value of incrementalism, as Derek Humphry's opening quote reveals: They will attain their ultimate goal by taking their time and achieving their intermediate objectives one by one.
It is crucial for anti-euthanasia activists to recognize that precisely the same strategy was used by the pro-abortion movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s as is now being used by pro-euthanasiasts. And their methods were undeniably effective: We now have abortion on demand for any reason in the United States and in most of the world and even abortion on command in some nations, including the People's Republic of China.
Identical Pro-Euthanasia and Pro-Abortion
Strategy: General Principles.
The fundamental question about euthanasia: Whether it is a libertarian movement for human freedom and the right of choice, or an aggressive drive to exterminate the weak, the old, and the different, this question can now be answered. It is both.
Dutch cardiologist Richard Fenigsen.
Figure 112-1 compares the primary strategies employed by both the pro-euthanasia and pro-abortion movements, and Figure 112-2 outlines some of the similarities between the strategies of these movements. Notice that the overall strategy for both movements is identical in its sequence and approach. Notice also that the euthanasia movement trails the abortion movement by about 20 to 25 years. This means that active euthanasia on demand will be a stark and concrete feature of our society by approximately 1997 unless direct and massive action is taken to prevent it.
The quotes by leading euthanasia advocates in Figure 112-3 support the general strategy of the movement as shown in Figure 112-1.
COMPARISON OF THE OVERALL STRATEGY OF THE PRO-ABORTION AND PRO-EUTHANASIA MOVEMENTS
[A medium text size on your computer's 'view' setting is recommended, otherwise, the tables may be discombobulated.]
GENERAL STRATEGY OF THE PRO-ABORTION MOVEMENT
STEP 1 > STEP 2 > STEP 3 > STEP 4
TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME:
1960 to 1968 1969 to 1973 1973 to 1993 1985 to date
STATUS: STATUS: STATUS: STATUS:
ACHIEVED ACHIEVED ACHIEVED IN PROGRESS
Prepare public; Use courts/ Progressively Convince courts
stress indi- legislatures to eliminate all and legislatures
vidual rights; get abortion restrictions and then public
conceal true for the 'hard until abortion that compulsory
objectives of cases;' ignore on demand is abortion is
the movement unfavorable an accepted necessary for
(kill on demand) abortion laws "right." the public good
OVERALL STRATEGY OF THE PRO-EUTHANASIA MOVEMENT
STEP 1 > STEP 2 > STEP 3 > STEP 4
TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME: TIME FRAME:
1970 to 1990 1975 to date 1985 to 2000 begin in mid-1990s
STATUS: STATUS: STATUS: STATUS:
ACHIEVED IN PROGRESS IN PROGRESS FIRM FUTURE
Prepare public; Use courts/ Progressively Convince courts
stress indi- legislatures to eliminate all and legislatures
vidual rights; get euthanasia restrictions and then public
conceal true for the 'hard until euthanasia that compulsory
objectives of cases;' ignore on demand is euthanasia is
the movement unfavorable an accepted necessary for
(kill on demand) euthanasia laws "right." the public good
SIMILARITIES BETWEEN THE PRO-ABORTION AND PRO-EUTHANASIA MOVEMENTS
THE 1970 PRO- THE 1990 PRO-
ABORTION MOVEMENT EUTHANASIA MOVEMENT
THE MOVEMENT'S STATED GOALS
All we want is abortion for just the All we want is death with dignity for
"hard cases" - rape and incest. just the "hard cases" - the incurable
Abortion on demand? Don't be comatose vegetables. Euthanasia on
ridiculous! demand? Don't be ridiculous!
THE MOVEMENT'S PRIMARY STRATEGY
The people don't want it. The The people don't want it. The
legislatures don't want it. So legislatures don't want it. So
we'll go through the courts and we'll go through the courts and
the medical community. the medical community.
THE MOVEMENT'S PRIMARY TACTICS
Emphasize individual rights and Emphasize individual rights and
control of one's own body; ridicule control of one's own body; ridicule
the opposition and stereotype it as the opposition and stereotype it as
a tiny minority of religious fanatics; a tiny minority of religious fanatics;
use "feel-good" slogans such as use "feel-good" slogans such as
"freedom of choice" to dull public "freedom of choice" to dull public
awareness of what is happening; awareness of what is happening;
paint abortion "rights" as social paint euthanasia "rights" as social
progress; eliminate or ignore anti- progress; eliminate or ignore anti-
abortion laws; use the sympathetic euthanasia laws; use the sympathetic
media to the fullest possible extent. media to the fullest possible extent.
THE MOVEMENT'S FAVORITE SLOGANS
(1) Women have the right to control (1) People have the right to control
their own bodies. (2) Abortion is their own bodies. (2) Euthanasia is
a private decision between a woman a private decision between a person
and her doctor. (3) You can't and his doctor. (3) You can't
legislate morality. (4) There is a legislate morality. (4) There is a
diversity of opinion on this issue. diversity of opinion on this issue.
(5) Don't let religious fanatics (5) Don't let religious fanatics foist
foist their narrow morality off on their narrow morality off on you.
THE OPPOSITION IS PORTRAYED AS:
Intolerant, judgmental Roman Intolerant, judgmental Roman
Catholics and fundamentalist Catholics and fundamentalist
bigots who want to cram their bigots who want to cram their
morality down our throats morality down our throats
Voluntary euthanasia Involuntary euthanasia and genocide
Abortion on demand. State comes Euthanasia on demand. State comes
have a "compelling interest" in have a "compelling interest" in
preserving the "Constitutional right preserving the "Constitutional right
to abortion." Opposition suppressed. to euthanasia." Opposition suppressed.
Eroding respect for human life. Eroding respect for human life.
The four steps of the overall pro-euthanasia strategy are shown below. The most
important step the first is described in the following paragraphs.
THE FOUR-STEP PRO-EUTHANASIA STRATEGY
STEP #1: Prepare the public.
A. Use the media.
B. Dehumanize the helpless.
STEP #2: Work through the courts.
Ignore current laws.
STEP #3: Expand to euthanasia on demand.
STEP #4: Compulsory euthanasia.
Emphasize organ harvesting.
FIGURE 112-3 QUOTES SUPPORTING THE OUTLINE OF THE FOUR-STEP PRO-EUTHANASIA STRATEGY SHOWN IN FIGURE 112-1
STEP #1: PREPARE THE PUBLIC
It will probably be many years before we [physicians] in America can bring ourselves to chloroform an idiotic infant or to permit a slowly dying patient to take an overdose of medicine. What we will first have to train ourselves to do will be to leave by the patient's bed a lethal drug, which he can take some night if he so desires.
Walter Alvarez, M.D., 1970.
It is no good the Voluntary Euthanasia Society saying they only want a very small number of suffering people to be killed, when their own officers who were saying it have demonstrated utterly different intentions. Arthur Kostler killing his young wife to spare her the grief of being bereft of him. Nicholas Reed giving to Mark Lyons the address of a lady for him to kill who had only a depression and no other reason to wish to die. The euthanasia societies producing a suicide how-to-do-it booklet whose circulation they obviously could not control and which was used by a desperate teenager in
Richard Lamerton, Medical Director of the Hospice of the Marches, Hereford and Cheltenham, England. "Euthanasia Threat to Old People." Friends of Humanity Backgrounder [England], Dec. 1987, page 4.
STEP #2: WORK THROUGH THE COURTS AND IGNORE CURRENT LAWS
We now "let go" of some babies, notwithstanding the rules against euthanasia. But we do not announce this to the world. Such practice allows the actors to hide from themselves the fact that they have changed or departed from the rule while announcing their strict adherence to the absolute rule of sanctity of life in all cases.
Attorney F. Raymond Marks, euthanasia conference participant, quoted in Victor G. Rosenblum and Michael L. Budde. "Historical and Cultural Considerations of Infanticide." National Right to Life News, April 11, 1985, page 11.
I have yet to hear of a set of guidelines for euthanasia which would not lead to terrible abuses even in the opinion of those physicians who are sometimes willing to practice it. Inevitably, this form of "therapy" would spread to situations in which at present it would be unthinkable.
Jonathan H. Pincus, M.D., Yale University.
STEP #3: EXPAND TO EUTHANASIA ON DEMAND
If we may terminate the lives of cancer victims, why not extend the same "mercy" to those slowly dying from debilitating diseases or cardiovascular disorders? If lack of brain function is accepted as a criterion for legal euthanasia, what degree of senility or comatoseness shall be established as the point at which a person deserves to die? And why should we not include in this "act of mercy" those who are suffering from apparently irreversible mental illness? What of the horribly crippled or bedridden...?
Louis Cassels, syndicated UPI columnist, April 17, 1973.
We realize there will be demented [Alzheimer's and Parkinson's] patients by the tens of thousands. So I'm a little bit afraid. I really think that we may accept that, for purely economic reasons, they can stop life after a period of three years of complete dementia, for instance. I don't believe we can prevent it.
Dutch euthanasia leader Dr. Pieter Admiraal, quoted in Michael Fumento. "The Dying Dutchman: Coming Soon to a Nursing Home Near You." The American Spectator, October 1991, pages 18 to 22.
It is ridiculous to give ethical approval to the ending of a subhuman life by abortion while refusing to give approval to the ending of a subhuman life by positive euthanasia. If we are morally obliged to put an end to a pregnancy when an amniocentesis reveals a terribly defective fetus, we are equally obliged to put an end to a patient's hopeless misery when a brain scan reveals that a patient with cancer has advanced brain metastases.
Joseph Fletcher, M.D., American Journal of Nursing, November 1973.
STEP #4: COMPULSORY EUTHANASIA FOR THE ELDERLY AND "DEFECTIVES"
A terrific article that I've read, one of the philosophers of our time, I think, is a guy named Leon Kass has anybody seen his stuff, he's just terrific! In The American Scholar last year he wrote an article called "The Case for Mortality," where, essentially he said we have a duty to die. It's like if leaves fall off a tree forming the humus for the other plants to grow out. We've got a duty to die and get out of the way with all of our machines and artificial hearts and everything else like that and let the other society, our kids, build a reasonable life.
Colorado Governor Richard D. Lamm, March 27, 1984.
One may anticipate further development of these roles as the problems of birth control and birth selection (abortion) are extended inevitably to death selection and death control, whether by the individual or by society ...
California Medicine editorial, September 19, 1970, page 22.
Most people would prefer to raise children who do not suffer from gross deformities or from several physical, emotional or intellectual handicaps. If it could be shown that there is no moral objection to infanticide, the happiness of society could be significantly and justifiably increased ... A newborn infant does not possess the concept of a conscious self any more than a newborn kitten possesses such a concept ... infanticide during a time interval shortly after birth must be morally acceptable.
Michael Tooley, "Abortion and Infanticide." Philosophy and Public Affairs, January 1972.
Planning to prevent over-population of the earth must include the practice of euthanasia, either negative or positive ... Therefore, since we must restrict the rate of population increase, we should also be giving careful consideration to the quality as well as the quantity of people generated ... We doubtless will not get support from all religious groups and it would be best not to force these and other disagreeing groups to conform unless non-conformity would affect society or significant segments of it too adversely.
It seems unwise to attempt to bring about major changes permitting positive euthanasia until we have made major progress in changing laws and policies pertaining to negative euthanasia.
Robert H. Williams, M.D. "Numbers, Types and Duration of Human Lives." Northwest Medicine, July 1970, pages 493 to 496.
There is no more horrific sight than a human being whose age makes him totally dependent upon others. I prophecy that before the end of the century, the Demise Pill will be available, and if civilization continues, it will be obligatory. The overriding policy will be survival of the fittest.
Dr. John Goundry, Essex County Practitioner. Pulse Medical Journal, August 1977. Described in Nancy B. Spannaus, Molly Hammett Kronberg, and Linda Everett (Editors). How to Stop the Resurgence of Nazi Euthanasia Today. Transcripts of the International Club of Life Conference, Munich, West Germany, June 11-12, 1988. Executive Intelligence Review Special Report, September 1988. EIR, Post Office Box 17390, Washington, D.C. 20041-0390.
The First Step: Prepare the Public.
What I'm talking about is inevitable. The people who are opposing this are gonna lose eventually, just like they lost in birth control and everything else that happened in medicine. It's an obstinate, futile opposition. The future, well, it comes eventually.
Jack ("The Dripper") Kevorkian.
One of the most chilling parallels between the Nazi movement and the American pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia movements is the pervasive propaganda used to lull the populace into a state of dull and uncaring acceptance.
The Nazis used the newly-established German film industry to crank out a succession of sloganistic and shallow movies that attempted to establish that (1) there are people living that are an unfair burden to the rest of us and to society, and (2) that it is really in everyone's best interests to remove these people from the picture by killing them as humanely and as decently as possible, of course.
Naturally, sophisticated Americans would never be taken in by the relatively crude, half-century old Nazi propaganda flicks. No way. Instead, we Americans willingly allow ourselves to be lulled by much more subtle and pervasive 'logic' (actually raw emotion disguised as refined "thinking," which is really just a desire to follow perceived public opinion).
A few examples of latter-day euthanasia propaganda films are described below.
NBC's "The Right to Die."
NBC initially screened their 1987 film "The Right to Die" for families of the victims of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, or 'Lou Gehrig's Disease'). The purpose of this screening was to allow the pro-euthanasia group Concern for Dying to 'educate' the families as to the virtues of euthanasia for those with ALS.
As could be expected, NBC glowingly described the 'balance of viewpoints' in this film. But, just as in the network's atrocious "Cagney and Lacey" episode "The Clinic," the only defender of life in "The Right to Die" was the usual stereotyped Catholic who didn't put up any kind of a coherent or logical defense at all.
The ALS sufferer, Emily, gradually sees the 'wisdom' of accepting death and the 'fact' that she is really just a burden for everyone. Her only 'considerate' and 'courageous' course of action is to die.
An NBC-written "Guide" given to all of the ALS families bemoaned the "fact" that 10,000 comatose patients are being kept alive at prohibitive cost. The "Guide" also contained a question by euthanasia pusher Joseph Fletcher which asked if the respondents agreed that the true issue was not the right to die (which was naturally moot), but the "right to help those who choose to die."
The five pages of the "Guide" contained only two short paragraphs even hinting that there were any objections to euthanasia at all, and, of course, "even the right to life groups are divided on this issue" (which is a barefaced lie).
In case the status of the film as pro-euthanasia propaganda is not clear, star Racquel Welch, in a subsequent interview with the New York Times, stated that "I have always been a staunch supporter of individual rights and the freedom of choice."
NBC's "Mercy or Murder."
This film, shown in January of 1987, enthusiastically endorsed Roswell Gilbert's act of blowing his wife's brains out because she was suffering from Alzheimer's Disease and wanted her suffering to end.
The film neglected, of course, to mention that the pain of almost all Alzheimer's patients can be eased or totally eliminated by drugs. The primary message transmitted was that "EUTHANASIA = LOVE."
The actor who played Marcus Welby, M.D. (Robert Young), was cast in the part of the murderer. Writer-director Steven Gethers stated that he intended to present a "balanced" view of the issue and would "present both sides." However, Young told the New York Times in a subsequent interview that "I suppose this film may be one small step in the campaign to change law to consider euthanasia as a form of justifiable homicide."
ABC's "When the Time Comes."
This two-hour film was shown on May 25, 1987, and featured 34-year old Lyddie Travis, who was dying of cancer. The entire first hour told the story of how she relentlessly pressured her husband into giving her a lethal dose of drugs.
This program was nothing more or less than a two-hour 'how-to' course in mercy killing. Right to Life inquirers were told that, in the opinion of the producers, the show was "balanced" and "very even-handed."
Of course. They always are, aren't they?
The obvious messages of this show were;
• Real love is helping a person kill themselves.
• Religious or ethical objections are for idiots and 'backwards thinkers.'
• Cancer patients are "rotting lumps of nothing."
• Not everyone is against suicide.
• There are organizations that you can go to help you kill yourself.
• The show listed the names of those "progressive" and "forward-thinking"
countries that have legalized euthanasia.
• The program showed how to assist someone in killing themselves without
• The virtues of "Love" and "friendship" outweigh any significant moral
objections to any act that might be considered.
Stars As Killers.
One of the mainline strategies employed by the pro-abortion movement when abortion was illegal both in the United States and various European countries consisted of having famous personalities declare that they had had abortions. These "stars" then literally dared the authorities to prosecute them.
The pro-abortionists could not lose when they employed this tactic because, if the "stars" were prosecuted, they would become martyrs and cause a huge splash of pro-abortion publicity. If the "stars" got off scot-free (as they invariably did), this sent the strong message to the public that it was all right to flout the law.
Today, of course, we have pro-euthanasiasts employing precisely the same tactic. The "stars" are now killing their parents or spouses and daring the law to punish them. Derek Humphry, director of the Hemlock Society, is the best-known example. He assisted in killing his first wife, Jean. Then, he and his second wife assisted in the killing of both of her parents. Humphry and his second wife, Ann, wrote two books about their experience and were not prosecuted. The Hemlock Society publishes a suicide "cookbook," and also conducted a phony "survey" that purported to show that most California physicians had directly killed one or more of their patients.
Another pro-euthanasia "star" is Betty Rollin, who for more than ten years was a highly-visible correspondent for the NBC Nightly News and ABC Nightline. She described how she researched fatal poisons and stood at the bedside of her mother as she overdosed and died. Her book Last Wish was, of course, warmly received by the pro-euthanasia people. Naturally, there was not even the slightest hint of any type of prosecution, even though Rollin's book includes a 'how-to' chapter on suicide by poison, and despite the fact that her actions clearly violated the law.
Dehumanizing the Victims.
The second step in the euthanasiast's preparation of the public is to convince everyone that the targets of their program are not really human beings just as pro-abortionists did twenty years ago.
A classic example of this dehumanization involved Nancy Cruzan, a woman who was severely injured and incapacitated by a car crash.
In order to kill Cruzan, it was necessary to first dehumanize her, a task willingly and expertly taken up by Dr. Fred Plum, Chief of Neurology at the Cornell New York Hospital.
During testimony, he referred to her as a mere "collection of organs" and an "artifact of technological medicine."
In an interview with writer Nat Hentoff, Dr. Ronald Granford observed that she was the "moral equivalent of a biopsy from Nat Hentoff's arm," and asserted that her "legal personhood" should be removed so she could be disposed of or experimented upon without the bother of having to go to court.
It is interesting to note that, just as the preborn are being referred to as "pre-human," those in a coma are now commonly referred to by physicians as "post-human."
It is also fascinating to note that, in a world where everyone except White males is considered to be handicapped in one way or another, some Neoliberal death pushers would like to strip protection away from those human beings who are handicapped more than anyone else. This is obviously necessary to kill the handicapped, because, in our new and more sensitive world, anyone who is defined as debilitated in any way is deserving of respect and protection not death.
In support of this view, Neoliberal syndicated columnist Ellen Goodman recently wrote that
Indeed, one of the most striking new impressions from the [PVS] conference is how the language of "disability" is being applied to those in a persistent vegetative state. It's being used in courtrooms against families who want to stop treatment of the unconscious and let them die. It's being used by advocates such as James Bopp of the National Legal center for the Medically Dependent and Disabled, who accuse families like Ryan [Amerman]'s and Christine [Busalacchi]'s of "discounting, devaluing life based on disability.
There is something not only deceptive in this, but cruel. To describe a PVS patient as disabled is, as ethicist George Annas put it, "to describe a Minnesota blizzard as precipitation." To use funds intended for those who can benefit on those who cannot is somewhere between perverse and immoral.
There are indeed slippery slopes. But patients in a persistent vegetative state are not people with a reduced quality of life. They are people with no quality of life. We have to look squarely at this reality.
To apply the language of disability to permanently unconscious people is not to strengthen but to cheapen that language and that cause. It makes a mockery of our best intentions...
The very idea of euthanasia clinics (obitoriums) may seem so ludicrous and frightening as to be almost surreal. But, rest assured, the objectives of the euthanasia movement are not some bizarre fantasy. They are concrete and they are real!
Figure 112-3 lists quotes by leading pro-euthanasiasts which clearly outline and prove, beyond all possible doubt, that compulsory death for all those they consider "unfit" is their most cherished dream and objective. Each stated goal, as listed in Figure 112-1, is supported by quotes by the euthanasiasts themselves. Once again, we allow the killers to indict themselves with their own careless rhetoric.
Euthanasia: How It Will Be.
The Future of Euthanasia.
It is instructive to examine the situation in a country where euthanasia is a fact of life, in order to ask ourselves the question: Do we really want this for our country? We need look no further than Holland, whose permissive euthanasia laws have come under increasing scrutiny over the last five years.
A Matter of Mere Economics ...
Being elderly and ill in Holland is a frightening experience, because the elderly know that they are officially "expendable."
Such people are expendable because the primary motivation for Dutch health 'care' is not care per se, but cost containment. They have been examined by 'healers' using a callous and soulless benefit-cost equation and they have been found wanting.
For a detailed examination of the euthanasia situation in Holland, see Chapter 109, "History of Euthanasia."
Reaction of the Americans.
The topic of runaway health care costs is becoming more and more prominent in the United States. As may be expected, the more utilitarian (or eugenicist) mindset naturally opts for the easy solution: Instead of working to increase efficiency and cut waste, simply eliminate those who are too costly to care for under the current system.
Daniel Callahan of the openly pro-rationing and pro-euthanasia ethics "think tank," the Hastings Center, says that;
... a denial of nutrition may in the long run become the only effective way to make certain that a large number of biologically tenacious patients actually die. Given the increasingly large pool of superannuated, chronically ill, physically marginal elderly, it could well become the nontreatment of choice ... Our emerging problem is not just that of eliminating useless or wasteful treatment, but of limiting even efficacious treatment, because of its high cost. It may well turn out that what is best for each and every individual is not necessarily a societally affordable health care system.
Callahan and others advocate a "fixed categorical standard" which would deny each category of surgery past certain ages, regardless of prognosis, i.e., coronary bypass banned after the age of 60.
Naturally, withholding care from perfectly healthy older people would add immeasurably to the supply of organs envisioned by some pro-euthanasia agitators.
One of these 'advanced thinkers' is Willard Gaylin, former President of the Institute of Society, Ethics, and the Life Sciences (the "Hastings Institute"), who would like to see comatose persons (he calls them "neomorts" stockpiled in special repositories (called "bioemporiums") for organ harvesting and experimentation.
Another author describes Gaylin's objectives;
Various illnesses could be induced in neomorts, and various treatments tried, thus protecting live patients from being "guinea pigs" in experimental procedures and therapies ... Neomorts would provide a steady supply of blood, since they could be drained regularly ... Bone marrow, cartilage, and skin could be harvested, and hormones, antitoxins, and antibodies manufactured in neomorts ... To do this, [Gaylin] notes, we would have to accept the concept of "personhood" as separate from "aliveness" for adults, as we do now with fetuses.
Perhaps Dr. Robin Cook was influenced by the horror of Gaylin's views when he wrote his bestselling medical thriller Coma.
While Callahan and Gaylin continue with their speculations and dreams, there is growing fear among medical professionals that programs such as those in Holland will quickly become entrenched in United States health care facilities. Dr. Charles L. Sprung warns that "Widespread practice of active euthanasia in the United States appears not very far away."
However, others would welcome such 'advances' with open arms. Derek Humphry, founder of the Hemlock Society, said of the euthanasia program in Holland; "It's been tested there ... it appears to be working." Margaret Battin, another Hemlock officer, urged that the United States adopt the Dutch euthanasia program; "Let's use the Netherlands as a role model."
The Dutch euthanasia pushers apparently wouldn't mind seeing their brand of killing exported all over the world. Maurice De Wachter, director of the Institute for Bioethics in Maastricht, ominously said in 1993 that "The Netherlands is what I would like to call a test case for an experiment in medical ethics ... There is a practice growing where doctors feel at ease with helping patients to die, in other words killing them."
And Dutch euthanasia doctor Julius Hackethal presented a talk at the Second National Voluntary Euthanasia Conference of the Hemlock Society, in which he confidently predicted that "Your [Hemlock Society] congress will help that the self-evident human rights for a dignified death will become a fixed and steady law all over the world. Such a vested human right would automatically cause that everybody would be able to determine for himself at what time and in which way he wants to die."
No one can deny that the Dutch model would certainly save lots of money in the United States. It is estimated that 20,000 persons are killed in Holland every year most of them involuntarily (the 3,000 Dutch voluntary euthanasias are strictly registered; the remainder are classified as involuntary).[16,17]
Holland has a population of about 15 million. If this figure were ratioed up to the United States' current population of 255 million, this would mean 340,000 murders by euthanasia every year in this country one every twenty seconds during working days equivalent to the total population reaching the age of 80 every year!
And so, Hollywood's "B" movie "Logan's Run" has become eerily prophetic.
"It Can't Happen Here ..."
Pro-euthanasia activists continue to insist that involuntary euthanasia will never take place in the United States.
This is part of the psychology of the movement; it continues to strive vigorously for precisely that goal that it claims is impossible just as the pro-abortionists did in 1965. When pressed for answers, of course, euthanasists will be able to offer no concrete reasons as to why euthanasia on demand (or command) is unavoidable or impossible in this country.
But the purportedly impossibility of doctors killing patients is already happening in this country and, sometimes, the doctors are even forced to kill!
For example, in March 1987, a California superior court ordered cardiologist Dr. Allen Jay to remove 90-year old Anna Hirth's feeding tube. He refused, stating that "[This] was something I could not do, either as a practicing Jew or as a practicing physician or as an American." The judge immediately threatened to imprison him indefinitely on contempt of court charges.
This was the first know case of attempted judicial coercion for a forced euthanasia. The Court was perfectly willing to jail a doctor indefinitely unless he turned his back on his beliefs, his religion, and the tenets of his profession. The only reason that Dr. Jay got away with his refusal is because there was a public outcry over the judge's coercive tactics but how long will it be before the public just doesn't care anymore?
Several medical journals have described the mass practice of eliminating or weakening 'biologically tenacious' elderly living in nursing homes by deliberately tampering with their diets, medicines, and environments in subtle ways.
At the other end of life, of course, our medical professionals commit more than 5,000 cases of infanticide of handicapped newborn babies in the United States every year.
For further information on infanticide, see Chapter 110.
An event is happening about which it is difficult to speak but about which it is impossible to remain silent.
The euthanasia movement made its first well-organized attempt to establish the 'right to die' in the late 1960s. However, the drive for legalized suicide stalled, because its proponents moved too quickly and too soon. Experts now recognize that no nation can establish euthanasia as a 'right' before establishing abortion as a 'right.'
The reason is simple: The anti-life forces must gradually erode society's respect for human life. First, the most helpless and invisible of society's 'unwanted' members the unborn are dehumanized and rendered expendable. This is followed by the 'bridge' of infanticide, the killing of so-called 'defective' newborns, which is already happening in this country on a large scale.
Finally, the door can be thrown wide for euthanasia on demand and ultimately involuntary euthanasia. We are standing at that crossroads in the United States right now.
This is a precious possession which we cannot afford to tarnish, but society always is attempting to make the physician into a killer to kill the defective child at birth, to leave the sleeping pills beside the bed of the cancer patient ... It is the duty of society to protect the physicians from such requests.
The Anti-Life Opposition.
Pro-lifers must not be led into believing that euthanasia is just a local threat. As Figure 112-4 demonstrates, the Hemlock Society and other American pro-euthanasia organizations are just a small part of a massive worldwide network of anti-life groups that work together very efficiently in achieving their goals.
Fortunately, pro-lifers also have a nationwide network with which to oppose the killers, and some of the main groups within this system are listed in this section.
WHO'S WHO IN THE INTERNATIONAL EUTHANASIA NETWORK
The World Federation of Right to Die Societies international umbrella group.
The Voluntary Euthanasia Society (VES), founded in 1974, 3,500 members.
Fundacion Po-Derecho a Morir Dignamenta (DMD, Foundation for a Dignified Death), founded in 1979, 2,300 members.
Landsforeningen mit Livstestamente (My Life's Testament Society), founded in 1976, 14,000 members.
(1) Association pour la Droit de Mourir avec Dignite (ADMD, Association for the Right to Die With Dignity), founded in 1980, 17,000 members. Secretary general Madame Paula Caucanas-Pisier committed suicide in 1984. She had commented "AIDS will help us, I'm sure."
(2) Association du Mourir Doucement (Association for Euthanasia). 11,700 members and 65 departmental delegations.
(3) Association pour la Prevention de L'Enfance Handicappee (APEH, Society for the Prevention of Handicapped Children). APEH director is French Senator Henri Caillavet, who declared that "If I were to have a retarded child, I would not let it live. I gave it life, and I also have the right to take it away. We must legalize this procedure so that parents are not considered criminals when they demand euthanasia for their abnormal children." Caillavet is also president of the ADMD.
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Humanes Sterben (DGHS, German Society for a Humane Death), founded 1980, 10,000 members. Sponsored by the Humanist Union, which has campaigned against any law that would hobble terrorist activity in the former West Germany. Staffed with pro-terrorist lawyers, including Heinrich Hannover and Heinreich Albertz. More than a thousand DGHS members have committed suicide. DGHS member Dr. Julius Hackethal, known as "Dr. Cyanide," killed a 69-year old patient because her disfigured face gave her a "poor quality of life." He made a film of her swallowing his poison and showed it at the 1984 Hemlock Society conference. He also admitted that he had killed his own mother in 1983 without her consent.
The Voluntary Euthanasia Society. Dr. Glanville Williams, author of Beneficent Euthanasia, is president of the Abortion Law Reform Association, a pro-abortion lobbying group.
The Society for the Right to Die and the Indian Society for the Right to Die.
Club dell' Euthanasia (CDE, Group for Euthanasia), founded 1986, 1,200 members.
Japan Society for Dying With Dignity, 5,200 members. Founded as the Japan Euthanasia Society in 1976 by Dr. Tenrei Ota, who was a primary advocate of "freedom of choice in abortion," and who developed the popular intra-uterine device (IUD), the Ota-Ring.
(1) Stichting Vrijwillige Euthanasie (Netherlands Foundation for Voluntary Euthanasia, founded 1973.
(2) Informatie Centrum Vrijwillige Euthanasie (ICVE, Information Center for Voluntary Euthanasia), founded 1975, 6,000 members.
(3) Nederlandse Verniging voor Vrijwillige Euthanasie (NVVVE, Netherlands Organization for Voluntary Euthanasia), founded in 1973, 26,000 members.
Pieter Admiraal wrote the "how to" euthanasia manual Justifiable Euthanasia, which was sent to 21,000 Dutch physicians and pharmacists.
Asociacon Derecho a Morir Dignamenta (DMD, Association for a Dignified Death), founded in 1984.
(1) Association pour le Droit de Mourir dans la Dignite Exit (DMD, Association for Death With Dignity), founded in 1982, 1,000 members.
(2) Exit Deutsche Schweiz Vereinigung fur Humanese Sterben (Group Supporting a Humane Death), founded 1982, 1,800 members.
(1) Americans Against Human Suffering (AAHS), founded with startup money from the Hemlock Society.
(2) Society for the Right to Die, president emeritus Joseph Fletcher.
(3) The Hemlock Society, which publishes The Hemlock Quarterly. Contributors have included Joseph Fletcher, P.V. Admiraal, Humanist behaviorist B.F. Skinner, Helge Kuhse, and Rev. William Wendt, who sells coffins for use as coffee tables. Founded by Derek Humphry in 1980. Humphry assisted in the suicide of his first wife, Jean, and left his second wife, Ann Wickett, who subsequently killed herself. Hemlock member psychiatrist Allan Pollack has declared that "Everyone has the right to end their life even a child. If we do not allow children or the incompetent to commit suicide or have euthanasia administered, we are really practicing age discrimination and illness discrimination." The Hemlock Society is described in more detail in Chapter 108.
(4) The Human Betterment Foundation (eugenics and euthanasia).
(5) Foundation of Thanatology, founded in 1968 in New York City to promote the Humanistic study of the aspects of dying.
(6) The Death Education Research Group (DERG), founded in 1973 at the School of Education of the University of Massachusetts. One of its primary purposes is to prepare a high school death education curriculum. National periodicals on suicidology include Death Education; The Bulletin of Suicidology; Death Studies; and Omega Journal of Death and Dying.
More than twenty other countries have pro-euthanasia organizations, including Austria, Belgium, Canada, New Zealand, Norway, Scotland, and South Africa.
Reference: Nancy B. Spannaus, Molly Hammett Kronberg, and Linda Everett (Editors). How to Stop the Resurgence of Nazi Euthanasia Today. Transcripts of the International Club of Life Conference, Munich, West Germany, June 11-12, 1988. Executive Intelligence Review Special Report, September 1988. EIR, Post Office Box 17390, Washington, D.C. 20041-0390.
Human Life Center (HLC).
The HLC, directed by Mike and Rita Marker, is an educational resource center with an extensive and up-to-date library of research materials and "Life Issue Files" drawn from various publications all over the world. The HLC is considered to be the national center of pro-life material on euthanasia (through the International Anti-Euthanasia Task Force), and offers a "Euthanasia Packet," which includes copies of materials which groups like the Hemlock Society and Americans Against Human Suffering use in their relentless drive to secure the right to kill born human beings. HLC also publishes two newsletters: Human Life Issues, and International Review,(both published quarterly). The address of HLC is;
Human Life Center
University of Steubenville
Steubenville, Ohio 43952.
Telephone: (614) 282-9953.
Human Life International (HLI).
This organization fights the "right to die" and International Planned Parenthood on a global level. HLI has been named Planned Parenthood's "number one enemy," which means that it is quite effective indeed. HLI has an expert staff of consultants, researchers, and advisors, including Mother Teresa of Calcutta. The annual dues include 17 issues of the HLI newsletter, and an additional fee will purchase ten special reports, published approximately monthly. Father Paul Marx heads HLI. Mailing address is
Human Life International
7845-E Airpark Road
Gaithersburg, Maryland 20879.
Telephone: (301) 670-7884.
Jews Opposing Euthanasia.
The body of Jewish Noahide law and accumulated case law is much more strictly opposed to euthanasia than it is to abortion. However, Jews who actively fight euthanasia are usually anti-abortion as well. Rabbi Yonah Fortner leads Jews Opposing Euthanasia, the most prominent such group in the United States. He may be reached at the
National Synagogue of the Physically Handicapped
6451 Charlesworth Avenue
North Hollywood, California 91606
Telephone: (818) 985-2429.
National Right to Life Committee (NRLC).
NRLC is the largest existing United States pro-life organization, with more than a quarter of a million members. The primary purpose of NRLC and Right to Life is to sponsor community, legislative, and political action to change current and proposed liberal abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia laws. Right to Life chapters usually maintain excellent video and book libraries.
For a listing of the addresses and telephone numbers of state Right to Life chapters, see Chapter 20 of Volume I, "Pro-Life Organizations."
Other Pro-Life Groups That Oppose Euthanasia.
There are a number of other pro-life "multiple-purpose" groups that work in a wide variety of fields and which also oppose euthanasia. Some of these groups are listed below.
American Life League (ALL)
Post Office Box 1350
Stafford, Virginia 22555
Telephone: (703) 659-4171
ALL gathers and disseminates activist and legislative information on a national scale.
Americans United for Life (AUL)
343 South Dearborn Street, Suite 1804
Chicago, Illinois 60604
Telephone: (312) 786-9494
AUL is a public interest law firm which protects anti-abortion, anti-infanticide, and anti-euthanasia activists.
Association for Interdisciplinary Research in Values and Social Changes
419 7th Street NW, Suite 402,
Washington, DC 20004
The Association sponsors research and development of pro-life ideas and publication in various professional journals.
Center for the Rights of the Terminally Ill (CRTI)
2319 18th Avenue, South
Fargo, North Dakota 58103
Telephone: (701) 237-5667
Christian Action Council
422 C Street
Washington, DC 20002
The objective of the Christian Action Council is to get churches of all faiths involved in the struggle against abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia.
Citizens United Resisting Euthanasia (CURE)
812 Stephen Street
Berkeley Springs, West Virginia 25411
Telephone: (304) 258-LIFE
National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB)
Committee for Pro-Life Activities
1312 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20005
Telephone: (202) 659-6673
The NCCB administers the national Respect Life program for Catholic parishes.
World Federation of Doctors Who Respect Human Life
Life and Family Center, Post Office Box 7244
Collegeville, Minnesota 56321
Telephone: (612) 252-2526
References: Euthanasia Movement Objectives.
 Derek Humphry in a December 18, 1986 interview. Quoted in Leslie Bond. "Hemlock Society Forms New Organization to Push Assisted Suicide Initiative." National Right to Life News, December 18, 1986, pages 1 and 10.
 Robert H. Williams, M.D. "Numbers, Types and Duration of Human Lives." Northwest Medicine, July 1970, pages 493 to 496.
 Quotes from Father John Powell, S.J. Abortion: The Silent Holocaust. Pages 2 and 29.
 Dutch physician Richard Fenigsen, Willem-Alexander Hospital, the Netherlands, at his presentation entitled "Euthanasia in the Netherlands." Washington, D.C., April 26-28, 1990, conference entitled "Current Controversies in the Right to Live, the Right to Die." Also quoted in Living World, Volume 5, Number 2, page 30.
 Dr. Jack Kevorkian, quoted in Sarah Sullivan. Kevorkian: The Rube Goldberg of Death." Cornerstone, Volume 19, Issue 93, pages 14 and 15.
 Robert Young, quoted in David H. Andrusko. "Don't Ask Dr. Welby." National Right to Life News, February 5, 1987, pages 2 and 8. Story on NBC's pro-euthanasia propaganda "Mercy or Murder."
 Joseph Piccione. "You Die Your Way ..." National Right to Life News, September 26, 1985, pages 1 and 12.
 David Brockbauer. "Pagan Ethics: The Nancy Cruzan Case." Fidelity Magazine, February 1990, pages 11 to 14.
 Ellen Goodman. "Doctors Won't Draw Line in New Medical Dilemma: 14,000 People Trapped in a Persistent Vegetative State." The Oregonian, December 11, 1992, page E9.
 World Trends and Forecasts. "Recycling Human Bodies to Save Lives." The Futurist, April 1976, page 108.
 Dr. Charles L. Sprung. Journal of the American Medical Association, April 25, 1990. Also quoted in Medical Survey. "Active Euthanasia in U.S. Imminent, Predicts Author." ALL About Issues, June/July 1990, page 43.
 Derek Humphry on the television show "Face the Nation," September 2, 1985.
 Margaret P. Battin, "The Art of Dying in the United States and Holland," presentation given at the Hemlock Conference in Chicago, Illinois, on May 20, 1989.
 John Henley, Associated Press. "Dutch Euthanasia Rule Stirs Ethical Conflicts." The Oregonian, February 11, 1993, page A9.
 From the transcript of a speech by Dr. Julius Hackethal entitled "Medical Help By Suicide As a Method of Voluntary Euthanasia," presented at the Second National Voluntary Euthanasia Conference of the Hemlock Society on February 9th, 1985, in Los Angeles, California.
 Syndicated columnist Ellen Goodman. "Rational Suicides: Urge to Control Death." The Oregonian, June 17, 1990, page K3.
 "Voluntary Euthanasia Common, Accepted in Netherlands." The Washington Post, April 6, 1987, page 3.
 Jan Bear. "Euthanasia Expected to Top Right to Life Agenda." Portland [Oregon] Catholic Sentinel. November 3, 1989, page 24.
 Margaret Mead, quoted in Maurice Levine. Psychiatry and Ethics. George Braziller Publishers, New York, 1972, page 325.
Further Reading: Euthanasia Movement Objectives.
Christiaan Barnard, M.D. Good Life Good Death: A Doctor's Case for Assisted Suicide.
Prentice-Hall Publishers, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1980. Reviewed by Olga Fairfax, Ph.D., on pages 17 and 18 of the July 1981 issue of ALL About Issues. The author, who killed his own mother and approves of the Jim Jones massacre in Guyana (because the 900+ victims did not have enough 'quality of life') is second only to Peter Singer in the extreme radicalism of his views on human life. This book shows where the anti-life mentality will eventually take us.
Daniel Callahan. Setting Limits: Medical Goals in an Aging Society.
New York: Simon and Schuster, 1987. 256 pages. Reviewed by David H. Andrusko on pages 8 to 10 of the April 21, 1988 National Right to Life News and by Gary Crum, Ph.D., on page 38 of the January 1989 issue of ALL About Issues. This book, disturbing because it is written by the Director of the Hastings Center, contains all of the standard pro-euthanasia slogans and logic, and is particularly frightening as it originates with the director of the nation's most prestigious bioethical "think-tank."
A.B. Downing (editor). Euthanasia and the Right to Death: The Case for Voluntary Euthanasia.
Peter Owen Publishers, 20 Holland Park Avenue, London W11 3QU. 1974, 200 pages. A series of pro-euthanasia articles by some of the most virulent anti-lifers in the world: Joseph Fletcher, Mary Rose Barrington, Yale Kamasar, and Eliot Slater are just a few of the 'ethicists' who trot out all of the old arguments, just dressed up in profoundly confusing Newspeak.
Jack Kevorkian. Prescription: Medicide: The Goodness of Planned Death.
Prometheus Books, 59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, New York 14228. 1991, 262 pages. Jack ("The Dripper") Kevorkian gives us some of his revolutionary ideas in the area of human beings putting other human beings to death. He primarily addresses the suitability of those condemned to death row as "organ farms," organ harvesting, and medical experimentation. Kevorkian refers to any limits on his activities as "stone-age," and rejects out of hand any kind of Christian morality whatever. This is a fascinating book for anyone who wants the goals of the euthanasia movement clearly outlined, because Kevorkian seems to be the only person on the pro-euthanasia side who is honest enough to speak of them truthfully.
Father Paul Marx, OSB. And Now ... Euthanasia (second revised edition).
Human Life International, 7845-E Airpark Road, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20879. Telephone: (301) 670-7884. 1985, 106 pages. This little book, directed at the general reader, offers an up-to-date assessment of the euthanasia situation in the United States and other countries. The basic history of euthanasia, the tactics of the pro-killing people, and the role of the courts are examined. Essential basic reading for the beginning anti-euthanasia activist.
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This is a chapter of the Pro-Life Activist’s Encyclopedia published by American Life League.