News from WIF
Are Persons With Disabilities Worth Keeping Alive?
By: Gerianne B. Bullen
On February 23, 2014, The Canadian Liberal Party, at its weekend Policy Convention, in Montreal, Canada, voted overwhelmingly in favour of legalized euthanasia.
As a person who’s had Cerebral Palsy since birth, I am extremely disappointed with this outcome, and while I realize that Trudeau himself can decide not to uphold this vote, such an immense showing of support for legalized euthanasia, is a very scary and slippery slope to see coming our way. In theory, the intent is to give individuals “suffering from illness” the right to end their life. In reality, it will also legally allow the murder of persons with disabilities and the development for the common way of thinking that this is an acceptable practice. It is not!
Every year, persons with disabilities, whether physical, intellectual, mental, or otherwise, are, to put it more honestly, “murdered”! We are in fact victims of filicide (disabled people murdered by their family members, caregivers, or medical professionals. Filicide is now recognized as such a problem that the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, “Nothing About Us Without Us!” is organizing its third annual National Day of Mourning, throughout the US. This year the date of the memorial is Saturday, March 1st.
And if as you read this you’re thinking: “Yeh, but that’s the US. This doesn’t happen in Canada!” my friends, think again, because yes, indeed, IT DOES happen in Canada. One of the most well known murders of this kind in Canada was in 1994, when Tracy Latimer’s father put her in his truck, turned on the engine, and deliberately, willfully and intentionally let her asphyxiate. Tracy was just 12 years old. Her life had barely begun. Tracy had the same condition as I do – Cerebral Palsy. Robert Latimer, his family & friends, and “Medical Professionals” did an excellent job of portraying Tracy as someone in constant, agonizing pain; yet photos of Tracy showed many many smiles. She was described as “happy” and “enjoyed” many things. And so I ask “Who had the real pain?”
In closing this very brief statement, I am going to ask each of you to recognize this important Day of Mourning for filicide victims, in a manner that is best suited to your circumstances. If you are a leader of a church, include this day and its purpose in your “prayers of the people” and/or sermon. If you are an organization/association, inform your members of this growing problem, perhaps in your newsletter, or e-mail membership/contact list. If you are an individual, forward this text to the people who know. E-mail or mail your concerns about this issue to your MP. Remember those who have been murdered already. Think about who could be next. Could it be someone you know? Could it be you?
The following links are excellent resources concerning Filicide:
History of euthanasia in Canada, Part I, by Cheryl Eckstein, Compassionate Healthcare Network CHN: (http://www.chninternational.com/history_of_euthanasia_in_canada%20by%20Cheryl%20Eckstein%2007.htm)
Realizing the Rights of Children with Disabilities in Canada: (http://rightsofchildren.ca/wp-content/uploads/children-with-disabilities-research-document.pdf)
Respectfully written and distributed by,
Gerianne B. Van Vugt (Mrs.)