Kudos to Mary Reed for her excellent column on “Suicide is never good health care,” in a recent Advocate. Her logic and the reasons she gives are unassailable, and she has done Baton Rouge a favor by writing it — as has The Advocate, by publishing it. Nevertheless, I would like to add one more reason.
The Hippocratic Oath that all physicians took at one time states quite clearly, “I will give no deadly medicine to anyone if asked, nor suggest any such counsel.” Any physician who voluntarily assists in suicide in any way is violating his or her oath and is, in fact, committing murder of a less-than-well person! Any physician who gives in to demands by anyone — including the state — to do so is little better.
For 2,500 years, the oath has protected both patient and physician from deliberate, untoward actions and has supported the right to life of every human being. Tragically, all that changed with the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court mandate that made abortion legal (though not moral) nationally.
As Pope Paul VI accurately predicted in his 1968 encyclical Humanae Vitae, euthanasia and assisted suicide, even involuntary child killing as in Belgium, followed.
With the loss of respect for all human life from conception until natural death, almost anything now goes!
president, The Hippocratic Resource