(/sites/default/files/uploads/2014/09/eut.jpg)Europe’s descent to self-annihilation and a holocaust of its own making continues unabated as a court in Belgium this month granted a convicted rapist and murderer the right to die under Belgian euthanasia laws. This latest destructive blow to Western civilization’s Judeo-Christian moral order comes only months after Belgium’s King Philippe signed into law last March a bill allowing euthanasia for children of any age and dementia sufferers upon request.
With this highly disturbing piece of legislation becoming law, Belgian opponents of euthanasia questioned who would be next after children were granted the barbarism to request their own deaths. They did not have to wait long for an answer. This month, Frank van Den Bleeken, 50, who has been incarcerated for 30 years for the rape and murder of a 19-year-old student, received the right to be euthanized from a court after claiming “unbearable suffering.” Intolerable physical or psychological pain is accepted as a grounds for euthanasia in Belgium.
Van Den Bleeken is not the first Belgian convict to ask to be put to death. Fifteen others have made the same request. But van Den Bleeken is the first to receive legal permission, thus establishing a new euthanasia category.
“I am a human being, and regardless of what I’ve done, I remain a human being. So, yes give me euthanasia,” said van Den Bleeken in a recent television documentary.
The convicted murderer, who is currently serving his sentence in a prison’s psychiatric wing, first requested euthanasia three years ago. Inadequate help from the state for the problem that, van Den Bleeken says, caused him to commit his crime and the chance he will reoffend if released constitute other reasons for his having asked to die.
The Belgian commission responsible for euthanasia stated it would not examine van Den Bleeken’s request until “all therapeutic possibilities had been exhausted.” But a court of appeal blocked the commission’s attempt to transfer van Den Bleeken to an institution for specialized treatment, after which he successfully fought the justice ministry in court for the right to be euthanized.
“My client can be transferred to a hospital for 48 hours to say his goodbyes to his family and can then die in a dignified manner,” said van Den Bleeken’s lawyer. “I am not able to say when nor where this will happen.”
Opinion on this specific case, on granting van Den Bleeken the right to be euthanized, is, as expected, divided and emotional. Since it involves incarcerated criminals, some of whom have committed terrible crimes, this case does not garner the same sympathy and support that the children’s did when the euthanasia right was extended to them, Belgium becoming the first country in the world to do so.
Some of those in favor of granting van Den Bleeken’s death request, for example, believe society would benefit economically from his demise, as taxpayers would no longer have to support him in prison, and would like to see the euthanasia right extended to other prisoners for the same economic reasons. Others are of the opinion that van Den Bleeken deserves death for the horrendous crime he committed, but only wish it was the state demanding an end to his life rather than the murderer (Belgium does not have capital punishment).
Many of those opposing van Den Bleeken’s request also do not do so on the grounds that euthanasia is morally wrong. Some maintain murderers like him forfeited all their rights when they committed their crimes, including the right to be euthanized. And if they are suffering in prison, then that’s too bad, since their victims, and the victims’ families, are also still suffering. Besides, the student van Den Bleeken murdered didn’t get to choose whether she wanted to die, so why should he? The justice system, some opponents argue, also prescribes a punishment for the crime committed, and some view van Den Bleeken’s request to die as an attempt to escape his punishment, thus undermining the rule of law.
But these arguments appear to have overshadowed the bigger issue in the van Den Bleeken case in that the boundaries for euthanasia in Belgium have once again been expanded. And in this case, a scant three months after their last enlargement.
Originally, Belgium’s euthanasia law, passed in 2002, was meant for gravely ill adults suffering unbearable physical pain. Now, as mentioned, it includes those experiencing “unbearable psychological suffering.” So relatively healthy people suffering mental stress or disorders are now being killed, among them a 44-year-old person who had undergone a failed sex change operation. So it is no wonder the number of euthanasia victims in Belgium has grown from 24 people in 2002 to 1,807 in 2013, an average of five per day and a 27 percent increase from 2012. All of which proves that early Belgian opponents of euthanasia were right when they claimed its parameters would constantly expand, becoming a slippery slope.
“Can one truly believe that there was really such a strong rise in incurable illnesses in Belgium?” asked the coordinator of a Belgian civil organization that wants stricter control of euthanasia. “When the criteria become more and more flexible, one clearly sees that there is a drift.”
The trailblazer in modern-day euthanasia is actually Belgium’s neighbor, Holland. Holland was the first European country to betray its Judeo-Christian heritage regarding the sanctity of life when it legalized euthanasia in 2001. Holland also has the dubious distinction of leading the way in killing babies, as the Dutch euthanasia policy was expanded in 2006 to babies born with severe birth defects. But while killing children under 12 is still technically illegal, as long as doctors follow a certain protocol, the Dutch justice system leaves them in peace.
It therefore should not surprise that Holland is another country where euthanasia appears out of control. In 2011, 3,695 people were reported medically killed, including 13 psychiatric patients, while 4,188 were euthanized in 2102, accounting for three percent of all Holland’s deaths that year. And like in Belgium, the number continues to rise, setting a new record every year.
“The Dutch experience shows that euthanasia becomes routine,” said one British anti-euthanasia activist.
One would have to go back to Nazi Germany to find a European country where euthanasia was so triumphant. In October, 1939, Adolph Hitler signed an authorization on his own personal stationary allowing German doctors to murder ill and physically and mentally handicapped children. This authorization launched the infamous Nazi euthanasia program, T-4 (for Tiergarten 4, the Berlin address of the program’s headquarters), in which several hundred thousand disabled minors and grownups, classified as ‘_leben lebensunwert_’ (life unworthy of life), were eventually killed simply because of the way they were born. Their murder was the beginning of the Nazi genocide and was to be followed by the Jewish Holocaust. More than seven decades later, modern-day Belgium and Holland are reviving the nightmare.
A new and frightening part of this nightmare is the mobile euthanasia units a Dutch pro-euthanasia organization created in 2012. In their eagerness to kill, these supporters of death on demand send a medical team, equipped with a lethal injection, to the homes of people who legally qualify for euthanasia but whose family doctors refuse to do it. These ‘death on wheels’ teams are called, appropriately, “_Levenseinde_” (Life End) units.
This is quite a reversal of the traditional doctor’s house call.
The reason for Belgium’s ever-expanding euthanasia legislation that now even includes children is that Western civilization is in the grips of a death cult, like the Nazi, Communist and Islamist ones. As Judeo-Christian values recede in Western European countries, the more such abominations associated with death worship, such as abortion, pedophilia, bestiality and euthanasia, will appear, as the continent reverts back to a pre-Christian paganism (which was also a Nazi goal). It is therefore no coincidence that Holland and Belgium, two of Western Europe’s most secularized and de-Christianized societies, have legalized euthanasia. They and Luxembourg are the only ones – so far.
Belgian euthanasia opponents, who are once again left asking ‘who’s next?’ after the van Den Bleeken legal decision, will, again, probably not have to wait long for a possible answer. The Belgian Intensive Care Society released a document requesting authorization to euthanize without a patient’s permission, “even in the absence of discomfort.” It claims non-requested euthanasia is already being regularly practiced.
“These patients are not sufficiently conscious to make an explicit request. It’s not about increasing the medication to prevent pain but so to precipitate death when the quality of life has become deficient,” wrote Jean-Louis Vincent, a former society head, in a Belgian newspaper.
Already, doctors have such control over life or death in Belgium that sometimes they do not even tell family members that a loved one has requested to be euthanized. The relatives of the deceased are told only after the fact. Now, if the Belgian Intensive Care Society gets its way, they won’t even have to inform their victims.
But such a frightening, downward trajectory is not unexpected when a country progressively gives up its traditional religious faith and allows Marxist socialism to heavily influence its society and culture. By abandoning its morality, losing its sense of eternity and living only in the here and now, oblivious of past and future generations, Belgium has created a moral and spiritual vacuum conducive to euthanasia’s growth. And its expansion is now occurring with such speed that it no longer resembles a slippery slope but rather a steep drop off a cliff into a beckoning abyss.
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