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Conservative MP warns Canada to stop ‘wrong’ and ‘dangerous’ euthanasia expansion to mentally ill

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MP Michael Cooper

From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

On March 9, 2024, Medical Assistance in Dying is set to include those suffering solely from mental illness and MP Michael Cooper said Canadians ought to be ‘offered hope and help’ and ‘not death.’

Canada is set to go down a “very dangerous road in March of 2024” should it proceed with expanding euthanasia to the mentally ill, warned Conservative MP Michael Cooper, who urged the Liberal federal government to immediately “scrap” its “radical” assisted-suicide program and instead offer “hope” for the suffering.

“Unless the Liberals reverse course, Canada is set to go down a very dangerous road in March of 2024, when MAiD for mental illness becomes available,” Cooper said in a video posted to X (formerly Twitter) on Wednesday.

“There is something they (the federal government) can do. Canada doesn’t need to go ahead with this, what the Liberals need to do is follow the evidence, stop the madness, and introduce legislation to permanently scrap this radical expansion.”

Cooper then said Canadians who are “suffering from mental health issues” ought to be “offered hope and help” and “not death.”

On March 9, 2024, euthanasia in Canada, or Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) as it is known, is set to expand to include those suffering solely from mental illness. This is a result of the 2021 passage of Bill C-7, which also allowed the chronically ill – not just the terminally ill – to qualify for so-called doctor-assisted death.

The expansion comes despite warnings from top Canadian psychiatrists who said the country is “not ready” for the coming expansion of euthanasia to those who are mentally ill, adding that the procedure is not something “society should be doing” as it could lead to deaths under a “false pretense.”

Cooper noted that the law itself is ambiguous in that it leaves open the door to anyone being approved for the grim procedure.

“It is impossible to accurately predict your immediate reality under the law,” said Cooper, adding, “The leading medical professionals said that Canada isn’t ready for two fundamental reasons.”

“The first is that in order to qualify for MAiD, someone must suffer from an irremediable disease or illness, and afterwards one must suffer from a disease or illness in which they are not going to get better, and they are in an irreversible state of decline,” he noted.

He then noted that a second “fundamental problem” with expanding MAiD to those with mental illness is the difficulty to “distinguish in the case of mental illness between a rational request for aid and one motivated by suicidal ideation.”

“This is underscored by the fact that the vast majority of persons who commit suicide suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder. And you might be wondering who would qualify for MAiD in mental illness? What constitutes a mental disorder for the purpose of the law?”

As it stands now, according to a task group appointed by the Liberals that was struck to establish MAiD practice “standards,” anyone would qualify “if they suffer from a mental disorder listed in” the standards guide, which includes those who are depressed, autistic, or having addictions issues.

Cooper said that the standards as written are “radical” as well as “dangerous” and “wrong.”

The mental illness expansion was originally set to take effect in March 2023. However, after massive pushback from pro-life groups, conservative politicians and others, the Liberals under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delayed the introduction of the full effect of Bill C-7 until 2024 via Bill C-39, which becomes law next year.

The delay in expanding MAiD until 2024 also came after numerous public scandals, including the surfacing of reports that Canadian veterans were being offered the fatal procedure by workers at Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC).

When it comes to MAiD, more Canadians are dying from the procedure every year. Indeed, a recent Statistics Canada update admitted to excluding euthanasia from deaths totals despite being the sixth highest cause of mortality in the nation.

The number of Canadians killed by lethal injection since 2016 now stands at 44,958.

Stopping euthanasia expansion still possible, says pro-life advocate

Recently, LifeSiteNews reported on how pro-euthanasia lobbyists want Canada’s assisted suicide via lethal injection laws to be extended to drug addicts, which critics warn could lead the nation down a dangerous path nearing “eugenics.”

Recent attempts by the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) to stop the expansion of MAiD have failed.

MPs in the House of Commons voted down a private members’ bill introduced by CPC MP Ed Fast that would have repealed the expansion of euthanasia laws to those suffering from mental illness.

However, according to LifeSiteNews contributor and pro-life advocate Jonathon Van Maren, Canadian Justice Minister Arif Virani noted that the “Trudeau government is considering delaying the expansion once again.”

Virani recently told The Canadian Press that the Liberal government is “weighing our options” about expanding MAiD in March while currently assessing what the joint parliamentary committee and medical experts are telling them.

“We’ll evaluate all of that comprehensively to make a decision whether we move ahead on March 17 or whether we pause,” he noted.

For respectful communication with Justice Minister Arif Virani:

Email: [email protected]
Constituency Office phone: 416-769-5072
Parliamentary Office phone: 613-992-2936

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Great Reset

Canadian euthanasia doctor takes delight in having killed hundreds through assisted suicide

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Ellen Wiebe

From LifeSiteNews

By Jonathon Van Maren

“I know the exact number,” she told Kirkey, but didn’t want to provide it. “It’s become a weird thing, people talking about their numbers, or criticizing people who talk about their numbers.”

The National Post’s July 6 profile of euthanasia doctor and abortionist Ellen Wiebe begins with a barnburner line: “Dr. Ellen Wiebe has never shied away from speaking publicly about the act of ending someone’s life.” That’s a bit of an understatement — Wiebe has positively reveled in it. In the recent BBC documentary Better Off Dead? Wiebe informed disability rights activist Liz Carr that killing patients “is the very best work I’ve ever done.”

Wiebe’s enthusiasm — and chuckling throughout the interview — made viewers very uncomfortable. Clearly, so is National Post writer Sharon Kirkey. The profile of Wiebe is titled “This doctor has helped more than 400 patients die. How many assisted deaths are too many?” Of course, Wiebe hasn’t “helped people die.” She has actively ended their lives by lethal injection. She now realizes that people recoil from that fact. “I know the exact number,” she told Kirkey, but didn’t want to provide it. “It’s become a weird thing, people talking about their numbers, or criticizing people who talk about their numbers.”

“Hundreds is good,” she added. As Kirkey noted, Wiebe had ended at least 430 lives by May 2022, according to her own testimony before a special parliamentary committee on MAiD.

Wiebe has accrued many nicknames — the “pro-choice doctor providing peaceful deaths,” and a “de facto ambassador” of MAiD, for example. Unsurprisingly, she insists that the killing she does be carefully cloaked in Orwellian language. “In Canada, we don’t use the word euthanasia,” she told a podcaster. “That’s what we use for our pets. Here, we call it assisted dying.” Still, Kirkey notes that not everyone is happy about the work she finds so rewarding. She told Scottish euthanasia advocates that “we know that angry family members are our greatest risk” because they are most likely to bring complaints against euthanasia practitioners.

Indeed, as Kirkey notes, Wiebe is willing to bend the rules:

She’s published numerous papers in the assisted dying space, mentoring other doctors and hosting MAID training webinars, but has also been accused of bullying and sneaking her way into faith-based facilities. She’s faced multiple complaints against her to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia. but has always been found in compliance with the rules …

Wiebe has had several complaints lodged against her, including her provision of death in the case of “Ms. S,” a 56-year-old woman with advanced multiple sclerosis who, in 2017, starved herself to meet eligibility criteria that her death was “reasonably foreseeable,” a case with eerie echoes to the 27-year-old autistic Calgary woman who stopped eating and drinking in May over a judge’s order blocking her access to MAiD.

In 2017, Wiebe was accused of “borderline unethical” behaviour for entering Vancouver’s Louis Brier Home & Hospital, an Orthodox Jewish long-term care home, and providing MAID to 83-year-old cancer patient Barry Hyman, despite knowing the facility did not allow assisted deaths on its site. Hyman’s family had invited Wiebe in to honour his wish to die in his room. As Wiebe assembled her prepared syringes, “My heart was racing that someone would open the door,” Hyman’s daughter, Lola, told The Globe and Mail.

The same year, the chief medical officer and coroner with B.C.’s coroner’s service raised questions about Wiebe’s provision of MAID to a woman with dementia.

As she told journalist Peter Stockland in 2018, her practice comes “right up to the edge of the law but never beyond.” Thus far, at least, the authorities have agreed with her.

Although Wiebe is 72 and suffers from a heart condition, she’s determined to continue the work she believes in the most — euthanasia and abortion. Euthanasia, in particular, she says, is “the last thing I’ll give up,” and both euthanasia and abortion are “about honouring people’s wishes, empowering people to have control over their own lives. It’s wonderful that I have the opportunity to do that.” Kirkey notes that, as in the BBC documentary, Wiebe grinned and laughed in her interview with the National Post. “I love life,” she told Kirkey.

Disturbingly, Wiebe isn’t the only euthanasia practitioner who enjoys her work. Kirkey noted that in “one study, MAiD providers with between 12 and 113 assisted deaths each described the delivery of a medical death as ‘heartwarming,’ ‘the most important medicine I do,’ ‘an ultimate act of compassion,’ ‘liberating’ and ‘almost an adrenaline rush. I was surprised at how good I felt.’” As Christopher Lyon, a social scientist at the University of York, observed, this is jarring “because death is usually a deeply painful or difficult moment for the patients and their loved ones.” As Kirkey noted:

Lyon’s 77-year-old father died by MAiD in a Victoria hospital room in 2021, over the family’s objections. (Wiebe was not the provider.) His father had bouts of depression and suicidal thinking but was approved for MAiD nonetheless. Lyon wonders what draws some providers to MAiD “and what happens to a person when killing becomes a daily or weekly event.”

“Some providers have counts in the hundreds — this isn’t normal, for any occupation,” he said. “Even members of the military at war do not typically kill that frequently. I think that’s a question that we’ve not really ever asked.”

Wiebe says she didn’t plan to be a euthanasia practitioner — she grew up in a conservative, Bible-believing Mennonite home in Alberta but abandoned faith by age 17 — but has been long committed to the medicalized killing. In her work as an abortionist, she did “pioneering work on medical abortions and bringing trials of the abortion drug, mifepristone, to Canada.” When the Supreme Court legalized euthanasia, she wanted in. “I called up a friend who was also an abortion provider and said, ‘Palliative care is not going to do the work. We better figure out how to get trained and get in there,’” she told the National Post.

Wiebe believes that Canada’s euthanasia regime will only expand in the years ahead. Kirkey writes:

She fully anticipates that MAiD will be extended to mature minors. “I’ve always been assuming for eight years that a 17-year-old with terminal cancer is going to say, ‘I have the right,’ and of course any judge in the country will say, ‘Yes, you do.’” She also expects some form of advance requests for MAiD in cases of dementia, which would allow a person to make a written request for euthanasia that could be honoured later, even if they lose their capacity to make medical decisions for themselves. Support for advance requests is strong, according to polls. But if someone is unable to express how they’re feeling, who decides if they are suffering unbearably — and what if they changed their minds? MAID doctors may be asked to “provide” for someone they have not met before, and with whom they will not be able to communicate. That’s going to be hard for us as providers,” she said. “This will be a new challenge. And I’m up for challenges.”

Wiebe’s predictions and enthusiasm are a warning for Canada. We have seen tens of thousands of Canadians die by lethal injection and many others speak out about how they feel pressured or pushed into euthanasia. It is imperative that Wiebe’s vision for Canada be opposed at every step. Lives depend on it.

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Jonathon’s writings have been translated into more than six languages and in addition to LifeSiteNews, has been published in the National Post, National Review, First Things, The Federalist, The American Conservative, The Stream, the Jewish Independent, the Hamilton Spectator, Reformed Perspective Magazine, and LifeNews, among others. He is a contributing editor to The European Conservative.

His insights have been featured on CTV, Global News, and the CBC, as well as over twenty radio stations. He regularly speaks on a variety of social issues at universities, high schools, churches, and other functions in Canada, the United States, and Europe.

He is the author of The Culture War, Seeing is Believing: Why Our Culture Must Face the Victims of Abortion, Patriots: The Untold Story of Ireland’s Pro-Life Movement, Prairie Lion: The Life and Times of Ted Byfield, and co-author of A Guide to Discussing Assisted Suicide with Blaise Alleyne.

Jonathon serves as the communications director for the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

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Great Reset

Canadian assisted suicide data suggests over 15,000 chose euthanasia last year

Published on

From LifeSiteNews

By Alex Schadenberg

With a slightly higher population than Canada, the state of California also legalized euthanasia in 2016. From 2016 to the beginning of 2023, 3,349 Californians ended their life by euthanasia.  In that same time span 44,958 Canadians died by euthanasia.

As we await the federal government’s release of Canada’s 2023 euthanasia data, last week British Columbia released it’s 2023 provincial euthanasia data.

According to the BC Medical Assistance in Dying 2023 report there were 2,767 reported assisted deaths, up by 10 percent from 2,515 in 2022.

It is concerning that “other conditions” represented 32.9 percent of the BC assisted deaths in 2023. Other conditions were reported under these categories:

Autoimmune Condition 2.4%, Chronic Pain 24.8%, Diabetes 9.8%, Frailty 60.5%, Other Comorbidities* 52.1%.

READ: Canadian hospice society provides ‘Guardian Angels’ to protect patients from euthanasia

Canada’s MAiD law does not require that a person be terminally ill. Diabetes, frailty, chronic pain, and autoimmune conditions are usually chronic and not terminal conditions.

The report does not indicate the conditions that comprise “Other Comorbidities” yet the report indicates that mental disorders, as a comorbidity, is within that category.

Euthanasia for mental disorders alone is not permitted in Canada but if a person has a mental disorder and another comorbidity (condition) then the person can qualify to be killed by MAiD.

The report excludes any important information, such as an analysis of questionable deaths or a further examination of why a person actually asked to be killed, rather it only includes their condition.

Canada’s euthanasia statistics

Based on the data from Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, Manitoba, Alberta, and Nova Scotia, I now predict that there were approximately 15,280 Canadian euthanasia deaths in 2023. Here is how I came to that prediction:

CBC Radio Canada published an article on March 9, 2024, stating that there was a 17 percent increase in Québec euthanasia deaths with 5,686 reported deaths representing 7.3 percent of all deaths, which is the highest rate in the world in 2023. The Radio Canada report was based on the Quebec euthanasia deaths between January 1 and December 31, 2023.

The Office of the Chief Coroner of Ontario released the December 2023 MAiD data indicating that there were 4,641 reported euthanasia deaths in 2023, which was up by 18 percent from 3,934 reported euthanasia deaths in 2022.

Alberta Health Services reports that there were 977 reported assisted suicide deaths in 2023, which was up by more than 18 percent from 836 reported assisted deaths in 2022.

The Nova Scotia Medical Assistance in Dying data indicates that there were 342 reported assisted deaths in 2023, which was up by more than 25 percent from 272 in 2022.

READ: Dame Cicely Saunders began the great work of modern palliative care. Let’s continue it

An article published by Global news, which may only be preliminary data, indicated that there were 236 reported Manitoba assisted deaths in 2023, which was up by 6 percent from 223 in 2022.

The BC Medical Assistance in Dying 2023 report stated that there were 2,767 reported assisted deaths, up 10 percent from 2,515 in 2022.

According to the data from Ontario, Québec, Alberta, Nova Scotia, Manitoba, and British Columbia, there were 14,413 assisted deaths in 2023 (in those provinces) which is up by 15.4 percent from 12,490 assisted deaths in 2022 (in those provinces). Since the total number of Canadian assisted deaths in 2022 was 13,241, I can predict that there were approximately 15,280 Canadian assisted deaths in 2023.

Reprinted with permission from the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition.

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