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The Coming Euthanasia Bureaucracy

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They say that evil eventually becomes banal. If that is true, that tells us about the future of euthanasia, which a Canadian writer sees as becoming bureaucratized.

From, “A Major Shift is Happening in the Meaning of Death,” by Joseph Brean:

Sooner or later, death will become a civil servant. He will operate in the open, during business hours, with a budget and a boss.

His work will be humanized and bureaucratized. Death will be licensed, regulated and empowered by law to solve a public policy problem — the unacceptability to certain people of certain types of dying.

This marks a major shift in the meaning of death, from ineffable human destiny to legislated human right.

Death as a bureaucrat: If that image doesn’t turn your stomach, it should.

Disabled, dying, ill, and despairing people are going to be killed in Canada–by doctors–probably starting next year. Some will die who, had they survived the euthanasia bureaucracy to get past the darkness, would have wanted to continue living. But we will never know who they would have been.

Doctors who wish to have nothing to do with taking human life will be forced into complicity. Many will acquiesce, I fear. Others will suffer medical martyrdom.

And the medical profession will be corrupted forever.

But there won’t be blood in the streets. Just bureaucrats and death doctors going about their deadly gray banality.

Editor’s note. This appeared at Wesley’s great blog.

As discussions surrounding euthanasia and assisted suicide continue to evolve, concerns have been raised about the potential emergence of a euthanasia bureaucracy. This hypothetical bureaucracy would entail a system of regulations, protocols, and oversight mechanisms governing the administration of euthanasia and end-of-life decisions.

Proponents of euthanasia argue that it provides individuals with autonomy and the right to die with dignity, particularly in cases of terminal illness or unbearable suffering. However, the establishment of a euthanasia bureaucracy raises significant ethical and practical considerations.

One of the primary concerns is the potential for abuse and coercion within such a system. Without robust safeguards and oversight, there is a risk that vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly or disabled, may be pressured into choosing euthanasia against their will. This could result in the erosion of trust in medical professionals and the healthcare system as a whole.

Furthermore, the creation of a euthanasia bureaucracy raises questions about the role of healthcare providers in end-of-life decision-making. Physicians, whose primary duty is to preserve life and alleviate suffering, may face ethical dilemmas when tasked with facilitating euthanasia requests. The establishment of clear guidelines and safeguards would be essential to protect the integrity of the medical profession and ensure that end-of-life decisions are made ethically and with due consideration for patients’ well-being.

Another consideration is the potential impact of a euthanasia bureaucracy on broader societal attitudes towards death and dying. Critics argue that the normalization of euthanasia could lead to a devaluation of human life and undermine efforts to provide comprehensive palliative care and support for terminally ill patients. It could also have unintended consequences, such as increasing the burden on healthcare systems and creating disparities in access to end-of-life options.

In light of these concerns, it is imperative that any discussions about the legalization of euthanasia are accompanied by careful consideration of the ethical, legal, and practical implications. Proponents and opponents alike must engage in open dialogue to ensure that any policies governing end-of-life decisions prioritize patient autonomy, safeguard against abuse, and uphold the principles of medical ethics.

Ultimately, the potential emergence of a euthanasia bureaucracy underscores the need for a nuanced and compassionate approach to end-of-life care. By prioritizing patient-centered care, promoting access to palliative services, and respecting the dignity of every individual, society can navigate the complex ethical and moral challenges surrounding end-of-life decisions with sensitivity and empathy.


Chelsea Garcia is a political writer with a special interest in international relations and social issues. Events surrounding the war in Ukraine and the war in Israel are a major focus for political journalists. But as a former local reporter, she is also interested in national politics.

Chelsea Garcia studied media, communication and political science in Texas, USA, and learned the journalistic trade during an internship at a daily newspaper. In addition to her political writing, she is pursuing a master's degree in multimedia and writing at Texas.

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