Who Decides The Worth Of A Life?

If we are to be biblical thinkers, then we have to agree that life is sacred. Not just "normal" life, but every single life that God created. No person should be allowed to decide someone's worth, that job should only be held in the hands of the One who created them.

For immediate release from the Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada

October 15, 2020

Ottawa, ON – ARPA Canada has added its signature to two statements released this week expressing deep concerns with Bill C-7, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (medical assistance in dying).

“We willingly signed on to these statements because we agree wholeheartedly with the legal concerns and the moral objections to the efforts of the Liberal government to expand assisted suicide to those who are not dying,” said Mark Penninga, Executive Director of ARPA Canada.

The open letter to all Canadians states: “We the undersigned remain inalterably opposed to euthanasia and assisted suicide, the intentional killing of human beings, euphemistically being called ‘Medical Assistance in Dying,’ (MAiD) but which is more accurately, and tragically, nothing less than murder, as was recognized by the Criminal Code of Canada prior to the passing of Bill C-14 in June 2016.”

“ARPA Canada laments that we crossed a line in 2016 where some lives were deemed worthy of less legal protection, and we are strongly opposed to Bill C-7 which seeks to move that line into the realm of those not dying,” continued Mr. Penninga.

separate statement signed by over 150 lawyers, including André Schutten, ARPA Canada’s Director of Law and Policy and John Sikkema, Legal Counsel for ARPA Canada, urged the federal government to rethink Bill C-7’s implications on the disabled community as well as other vulnerable persons.

From the open letter to all Members of Parliament: “Bill C-7 is premised on the notion that suffering associated with a non-life-threatening illness or disability is worse than any other type of suffering, and should, in some cases, be alleviated through a premature death – with social, legal, and governmental support. Bill C-7 thus affirms a very dangerous stereotype: that a life with a disability may not be worth living.”

If enacted, Bill C-7 will jettison important safeguards that were put in place to protect the vulnerable. In this regard, this Bill goes much further than responding to the concerns of the court in Truchon.

“Bill C-7’s removal of the 10-day waiting period is particularly concerning,” said André Schutten. “By cutting the 10-day reflection period, Bill C-7 would permit a person with Lou Gehrig’s disease who is having a very difficult day to ask for MAiD and be euthanized the same day or hour, with no time for reflection or even the chance to see a family member or friend again. Bill C-7’s predecessor (Bill C-14) already had a built-in exception for those whose death or loss of capacity to consent was imminent so it is completely unnecessary, and even dangerous, for the Liberals to do away with the waiting period in this new bill.”

A few years ago, killing a patient or aiding their suicide at their request was a serious crime. That courts have ruled that there should be limited exceptions to those criminal offences does not transform assisted suicide into a public good or “service” that must be provided or proactively offered to any and every severely sick or disabled person a doctor engages with. This is antithetical to medicine. It entails a monstrous revolution in medical ethics and culture.

The Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada has been involved in the national discussion on MAiD for years. ARPA Canada was an intervener at the Supreme Court of Canada in the Carter case, a participant in multiple government consultations for Bill C-14 in 2016 and C-7 earlier this year, and a presenter to Parliamentary committees.

For further comment or interview, please contact André Schutten
at (613) 297-5172 or andre@arpacanada.ca

Dear Readers:

ChristianWeek relies on your generous support. please take a minute and donate to help give voice to stories that inform, encourage and inspire.

Donations of $20 or more will receive a charitable receipt.
Thank you, from Christianweek.

About the author

Amy is a wife, mother, writer, and church planter living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. When she's not in a whirlwind of activity from all the things you can find her curled up with a cup of coffee, a cozy blanket, a dog, and a stack of good books.