Catholic Medical Quarterly

The Journal of the Catholic Medical Association (UK)

Building knowledge. Building faith. Protecting the vulnerable.

Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 64(2) May 2014


What’s going on in Belgium?

Pravin Thevasathan

Photo of authorVoluntary euthanasia seems to be out of control in Belgium. Let us examine some recent cases.

Nathan Verhelst was a forty four year old transsexual who opted for  euthanasia following a botched sex-change operation. Dr Distelmans, the co-chairman of the federal commission charged with reviewing euthanasia cases in  Belgium, said that the case "met all the conditions of the law" and "We did  not  discuss the case for one minute."

Two deaf identical twins aged forty five chose euthanasia after being told they were going blind because they said that they did not want to live without  being able to see each other again.

Ann G was diagnosed with anorexia nervosa. She was sexually abused by one psychiatrist and given euthanasia by another.

An elderly couple received euthanasia jointly because they did not want to  live without each other. The euthanasia provider stated of the case that "it is an important signal to break a taboo. This can be viewed as a normal way of dying... non-terminal (and terminal) partners have the option of dying together."

And we now see that Belgium has legalised the killing of children as well.

What is going on in Belgium?  Life is devalued and debased by these tragic events. If we accept the Belgian way, many vulnerable people are going to be offered euthanasia or assisted suicide. And many will accept the offer.

For our part we will continue do all we can to point out how wrong this is.