Rose F. Kennedy Professor of Christian Ethics at Georgetown University
Con to the question "Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?"
"In short, it would be misguided to assume that, if VAE [voluntary active euthanasia] were legalised, current attitudes among patients, doctors and health providers would remain the same and that VAE would be limited to rare 'hard cases'. Like abortion, VAE would probably become a commonly performed elective procedure. The evidence from the Netherlands, not least the 'shift' noted by Dr Van Delden towards the increasing performance of VAE as an alternative to palliative care, strengthens this prediction...
The enormous contribution made by the hospice movement shows what can be done, given sufficient commitment, skill, training and resources, to provide quality care for patients at the end of life. There is no need for any dying person to experience unbearable suffering. The inadequate care that too many patients experience, even in wealthy, developed countries like the UK and the USA, is a shameful indictment of the shortcomings of society's attitude towards the sick and the dying. It is, however, an indictment of society's failure to provide adequate care, not society's prohibition of intentional killing."
Euthanasia, Ethics and Public Policy: An Argument Against Legalisation, 2002
Experts MDs, JDs (Lawyers), PhDs and Religious Leaders with significant involvement in end-of-life issues. [Because end-of-life dilemmas require medical, ethical, legal, and in some case religious considerations, we view MDs, PhDs with a bio-ethical focus, and JDs/religious leaders with significant involvement as "experts" in the euthanasia debate.] [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
Governor of the Linacre Centre for Healthcare Ethics, 1990-2002
Rose F. Kennedy Professor of Christian Ethics, Georgetown University
Visiting Professor of Law, Jurisprudence and Bioethics, John Paul II Institute for Marriage & Family, Melbourne
Doctorate of Philosophy, University of Oxford, 1985