Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Compassion = Killing?

Is there a good reason that I shouldn't be outraged at the following news?

First, in the United Kingdom's Daily Mail:
The Church of England has broken with tradition dogma by calling for doctors to be allowed to let sick newborn babies die.

Christians have long argued that life should preserved at all costs - but a bishop representing the national church has now sparked controversy by arguing that there are occasions when it is compassionate to leave a severely disabled child to die.

And the Bishop of Southwark, Tom Butler, who is the vice chair of the Church of England's Mission and Public Affairs Council, has also argued that the high financial cost of keeping desperately ill babies alive should be a factor in life or death decisions.

Are we seriously going to debate the monetary value of a life?

The BBC News is also reporting the story:
A Christian medical body says holding back treatment to allow ill newborn babies to die - when treatment would be "a burden" - is not euthanasia.


"There may be occasions where, for a Christian, compassion will override the 'rule' that life should inevitably be preserved," Rev Butler was quoted as saying.
I understand that the mortality rate of babies born extremely premature is high - according to the Daily Mail article, 98% of babies born at 22 weeks or less. But does that mean we shouldn't try?

On his TV show tonight, Glenn Beck addressed this story, and had this to share:
I want to share a story with you about a baby that was born -- baby Knauer -- born blind, missing an arm and a leg. The parents were just beside themselves.

The dad decided he's going to write and ask for some help because all the doctors weren't helping. They wrote somebody who is pretty powerful, and they trusted him. And they said, "Please, can you help us put our child into a better place? Please remove the burden on us."

Well, he saw the pictures. He read the letter, talked to the parents, flew out to meet with them, just filled with compassion, tears filling his eyes. He said, "I will personally give you my personal doctor to review the case." The doctor came back and said absolutely no justification for keeping this child alive. The baby was allowed to die.

Who was that compassionate, powerful man who so graciously put that baby boy to sleep? You probably guessed by now it was Adolf Hitler. Baby Knauer was the first victim of the Holocaust. Hitler later signed a decree permitting the euthanasia of disabled infants based on this case and creating a panel of expert referees which judged the infants and found out which ones were eligible for death.

Once he was through with the babies, the elderly were next. As it has been said over and over again with tragedies regarding the Holocaust: Never again.
May we never forget how far human depravity will take us if given the chance, and remember that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

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