Monday, November 10, 2008

Is assisted suicide the easy way out for Medicine?

A couple of recent stories on Lifesite News discuss the developments on the Assisted Suicide/Euthanasia front. This is a growing phenomenon that shows how inconstant and foolish our society as a whole can be.

While one can easily understand the pain of suffering which would make persons want to escape the suffering which becomes seemingly intolerable, more and more, people are asking for suicide even when they do not have a terminal condition.

Those who support assisted suicide are doing more than providing an "out" from the hardships of living, however. Certainly, our medicine is truly remarkable and what wonderful care-givers we have. Discoveries abound. Many resources are put into treating the sick with great success. But with success comes a trap. There is a tendency on the part of our society to adopt an attitude that those who have incurable conditions are burdens to the rest of us. Some ask why should we waste resources on someone who is going to end up dying anyway? (Who isn't?)

I do not attribute this attitude as much to the medical professionals as to the whole of our culture. We have taught ourselves to value the lives of others more for what they can do than for the fact that they are human beings. If more and more of the sick and infirm take the suicide route, will this work against encouraging doctors and researchers treating similar patients and finding new treatments?

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