Last updated on: 7/28/2009 | Author: ProCon.org

Richard Fenigsen, MD, PhD Biography

Title:
Euthanasia opponent and former Dutch cardiologist
Position:
Con to the question "Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal?"
Reasoning:

“It is the concept of ‘voluntary’ euthanasia, evoking the themes of the right to self-determination and freedom of choice, that is being used to influence the public, the medical profession, and legislators to open the way to the legalization of euthanasia. However, there are, and always have been, compelling reasons for which ‘voluntary’ euthanasia was rejected by Western civilization in the past, and should be rejected now and in the future…

It is the attitude toward the evil and the absurdity of euthanasia that most clearly characterizes the two sides in the debate. To some, so unique is human life that even the possibility of error is sufficient reason to reject euthanasia once and for all. To others, so overwhelmingly important is euthanasia that it must go on regardless of all the nonsense, falsehood, reckless acts, and evil doings involved.”

“A Case against Dutch Euthanasia,” The Hastings Center Report, Jan. 1, 1989

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
    Experts
Individuals with MDs, JDs, PhDs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to end-of-life issues. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to end-of-life.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Former Dutch cardiologist
  • Outspoken critic of euthanasia
  • Former Advisory Boardmember, Program in Human Rights and Medicine, University of Minnesota
  • Former Member, Royal Dutch Society of Medicine (renounced his membership in 1984 upon the society’s endorsement of euthanasia)
  • Associate Professor, Faculty of Medicine, Lodz Medical School, 1963-1968
Education:
  • MD, University of Lodz Medical School (Poland) 1951
Other:
  • Born in Poland