Why the Hawaii Health Department Wants Looser Assisted-Suicide Rules

By Wesley J. Smith

Please understand, dear readers, that when assisted-suicide advocates promise strict guidelines to protect against abuse, they don’t really mean it. The promise’s purpose is to get the law passed, not to be kept.

Once facilitated suicide–or in the case of euthanasia, homicide–is firmly ensconced in public policy, the guidelines go by the wayside and are loosened repeatedly, over time. For recent examples, see Canada, the Netherlands, Belgium, Washington, and Oregon.

We see boosting stories for this process of liberalizing frequently in the popular media, only the vaunted guidelines are now called “obstacles” or “barriers.” It’s all such a con.

Now Hawaii’s Department of Health predictably urges a loosening of existing protections. From the Department’s Annual Report:

The DOH recommends the following changes to the OCOCA.
1. Waiver of any waiting periods if the attending provider and consulting provider agree that patient death is likely prior to the end of the waiting periods.

2. Given access to health care providers is limited, the DOH recommends authorizing advance practice registered nurses to serve as attending providers for patients seeking medical aid in dying.

Please know that if you support legalizing assisted suicide, you are also endorsing a process that ultimately leads to death on demand — as it has in Germany. You may want that. But don’t play the game that legalizing assisted suicide will only be an itsy-bitsy change in the law and medical ethics.

Calling Hawaii’s bureaucrat death-pushers the “Department of Health” is akin to the totalitarian government in 1984 calling its torture and brainwashing department the “Ministry of Love.”

Editor’s note. Wesley’s great columns appear at National Review Online and are reposted with his permission.