Is the UK Headed Towards Legalised Euthanasia?
Professor David Albert Jones thinks we may be and warns against it. In an article inThe Tablet Catholic newspaper available online he comments on the decision by UK Law Lords in favour of Debbie Purdy, granting her the right to information about how the Director of Public Prosecutions decides whether to prosecute in cases of assisted suicide. This in no way legalizes euthanasia. What she wants to know is whether the DPP will prosecute someone who accompanies her to a country where euthanasia is legal (such as the Dignitas clinic in Switzerland). This is an example, Professor Jones suggests, of the slippery slope in action. This may effectively encourage people to go to other countries seeking assisted suicide. Professor Jones expresses serious reservations about the possibility that people may feel pressured into ending their lives. It may lead to people who feel they are a burden to be encouraged to take their own life when with different kinds of treatment they may actually have felt differently. The ruling gives encouragement to the euthanasia movement so may be a thin edge of the wedge.
For more information about the ruling, search for Debbie Purdy in any news website or search engine. To read the article in full: www.thetablet.co.uk/pdf/3264.pdf
The British Humanist Association is in favour of a change in the law and criticizes the slippery slope argument and some of the elements which Professor David Albert Jones uses in his piece, such as references to Nazis in the argument. For more information see: www.humanismforschools.org.uk/pdfs/Euthanasia%20(final).pdf