Friday, March 19, 2010

Setting the Story Straight on "Pulling the Plug"

Margaret Somerville is a deeply eloquent writer and philosopher opposed to assisted suicide and euthanasia. Here she parses often misunderstood concepts that are very often hijacked by the pro-death crowd:
‘Pulling the plug’ isn’t euthanasia
Recently, I saw an illustration that accompanied an article about euthanasia. It showed the silhouette of a patient lying on a bed. There was an electrical outlet on the wall behind the bed and an unplugged connecting cord hanging down over the side of the bed.
Except in very rare circumstances — for instance, if the treatment were withdrawn without the necessary consent or against the patient’s wishes — withdrawal of life-support treatment is not euthanasia. Yet many people, including the artist who penned this illustration and many health-care professionals, mistakenly believe that it is. more

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