The Holy Bible

In nine states and in Washington, DC, it is legal to decide the day of your own death should you feel that your suffering is too much to bear. Though this is defined as euthanasia—according to Merriam-Webster, “the act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individuals…in a relatively…

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happy elderly lady in a plaid jacket

In 400 B.C. the Greek doctor Hippocratis of Cos, regarded as the father of medicine, wrote the Hippocratic Oath. This pledge of ethics outlines proper conduct and basic principles to be observed by doctors. All graduating medical students once pledged first to “do no harm”—the most well-known and fundamental promise. However, the original Oath has…

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“Even when not motivated by a selfish refusal to be burdened with the life of someone who is suffering, euthanasia must be called a false mercy, and indeed a disturbing ‘perversion’ of mercy. True ‘compassion’ leads to sharing another’s pain; it does not kill the person whose suffering we cannot bear. Moreover, the act of…

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patient in hospital bed, sick

When preparing our own advance medical directives, or when assisting others to do so, it is critically important for us to know precisely where ordinary means of treatment end and extraordinary means begin. Pro‑euthanasia groups have made a lot of progress by lodging in the public mind the specter of power‑hungry doctors “playing God” and…

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woman patient praying rosary

As we get older and begin to consider our own advance medical directives, we should also think about the question of pain and how we intend to deal with it.  Those who diligently practice their Catholic faith commonly ask three questions regarding the ethics of pain management drugs near the end of life: May they…

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old man black and white

The Hippocratic Oath…is an honorable historical document, which, however, does not altogether fit present times.  If it is to be applied today, the wording has to be changed very extensively, and in these reformulations a series of new oaths have been drawn up which have only a vague relationship to the ancient Hippocratic Oath….a [theory…

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man despair sad black and white

You are a member of the first generation of doctors in the history of medicine to turn their backs on the oath of Hippocrates and kill millions of old useless people, unborn children, born malformed children, for the good of mankind ― and to do so without a single murmur from the august New England…

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doctor looking at clipboard

“Evil committed for a good cause remains evil.” “Even when it succeeds?” “Above all when it succeeds.” ~Victor Hugo, History of a Crime (1877)1 Introduction An advance medical directive (AMD) is a legal document that allows a person to specify the medical treatment he wants and does not want in case he becomes incapable of…

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hemlock poisonous flower

A judicial determination should be made when it is necessary to hasten the death of an individual, whether it be a demented parent, a suffering, severely disabled spouse or a child. ~ Former Hemlock Society Executive Director Faye Girsh.1   British journalist Derek Humphry had a bit of a problem on his hands in early…

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health care elderly

Once any human being becomes worthless or expendable, all are reduced from an absolute to a relative value and no two human beings would be of equal worth, thus demolishing the very foundation of moral order….By devaluing life ― the life of the unborn, the elderly, the comatose patient, the handicapped ― we are, quite…

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