By Wesley J. Smith
Assisted suicide isn’t the same as palliative care. The latter about easing symptoms and alleviating pain. The former about intentionally ending life.
But the culture of death brooks no dissent. Vermont authorities require doctors to counsel terminally ill patients on receiving assisted suicide under a law that requires all end-of-life medical options to be discussed.
That is, doctors are to be forced by law to counsel their terminally ill patients about the pros and cons of committing suicide.
Alliance Defending Freedom has filed suit contending violation of the First Amendment and conflicts with aspects of Obamacare that prohibit discrimination against doctors that refuse to participate in life-ending actions .
Vermont medical authorities have recently determined to force conscientious doctors and other clinicians to counsel their patients for physician-assisted suicide.
Although Act 39, the State of Vermont’s assisted suicide bill, passed with limited protections for conscientious physicians, Act 39 and a separate existing mandate to counsel and refer for “all options” for palliative care have been construed by State medical licensing authorities, including Defendants, to require all healthcare professionals to counsel for assisted suicide.
Imagine. Not long ago, assisted suicide was against the law in Vermont. It violates the Hippocratic Oath. Now, all doctors are required to discuss the option of being made dead objectively and without judgment.
Forcing doctors to violate their conscience and essentially push suicide as if it were no different than controlling symptoms or other medical treatment–or refer for that purpose–is to force doctors to commit what they might consider a grievous sin or moral wrong.
But we are seeing more and more of such cases these days. Because as I wrote above, the culture of death brooks no dissent.
Editor’s note. This appeared on Wesley’s great blog.