One in four Canadians supports euthanasia on grounds of poverty
A significant minority wants to extend the assisted dying programme
Over a quarter of Canadians believe that people should have access to euthanasia because of poverty, a new survey has found.
Currently, Canada’s federal guidelines for medical assistance in dying include having a grievous and irremediable medical condition, making a voluntary request for medical assistance in dying that is not the result of outside pressure or influence, and giving informed consent to receive medical assistance in dying.
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But according to research by Research CO., a Canada-based public opinion researcher, over a quarter of the country would be content with a further loosening of the rules. Among Canadians, 27% believe that medical assistance in dying should be extended to people in poverty — a figure that rose to 41% among those aged 18-34 — while 28% agreed that assistance should be offered on the grounds of homelessness, 43% for mental illness, and 50% for being disabled.
Since Canada legalised euthanasia in 2016, the country has gone on to become one of the most permissive euthanasia regimes in the world. In 2021, the Canadian parliament enacted Bill C-7, a sweeping euthanasia law which repealed a requirement that only those suffering from a terminal illness whose natural death was “reasonably foreseeable” could request euthanasia. Now, anyone suffering from an illness or disability which “cannot be relieved under conditions that you consider acceptable” can freely use medical assistance in dying.
Through the government’s MAID programme, which includes both assisted suicide (when providers give patients the means to end their own lives), and euthanasia (when a medical practitioner directly administers a patient’s lethal injection), medically assisted deaths have soared. According to official Government statistics, there were 12,689 written requests for MAID in 2021, 31.3% more than in 2020, which resulted in 10,029 medically assisted deaths that year (a 34.7% rise from 2020).
Astonishingly, medically assisted deaths accounted for 3.3% of all deaths in Canada in 2021. For comparison, in the state of California, which has a similar population (approximately 40 million) and which legalised euthanasia the same year as Canada, only 486 people died through the state’s assisted dying programme.
Towards the end of last year, Canada’s MAID programme came under criticism for allegedly driving citizens into assisted suicide on the grounds of poverty or lack of healthcare. Stories included two separate cases of cash-strapped women suffering from chronic health conditions who successfully applied to end their lives. Elsewhere, four Canadian military veterans were allegedly “pressured” to opt for medically-assisted death by a now-suspended Veterans Affairs Canada caseworker.
The latest research from MAID shows that over seven in ten Canadians (73%) are pleased with the status quo, believing that the right policies are in place to allow people to seek medical assistance in dying. This is roughly the same percentage compared to January 2021, when 70% agreed with the statement.
Yet a significant minority want the country to go even further, with one in five Canadians (20%) believing that medical assistance in dying should always be allowed, regardless of who requests it, versus 12% who say it should never be permitted.
The headline should have read: “Half of Canadians have Lost Their Minds and Have No Moral Compass”. They have exchanged a bogus right to death for the right to life. Poverty is a reason to kill people? What’s next? And, excuse me for asking, just what is considered poverty in Canada, and how many actual Canadians are living at a poverty level that developing nations experience. Wake up, Canadians!!!!!!!
Well said. See my blog on “The New Death Culture”:
No, we’re advocating for the right for poor people to kill themselves. And there is no slippery slope here. At all. It could never be the case that we would actually kill someone who is discouraged about their financial situation. Or drug addiction. Or whatever.
And if we do, then that just shows how much more compassionate than you we are.
You heartless moral traditionalists.
It’s their choice.
Or what would be their choice, if they were thinking clearly. As we do. We’re just here to help.
obvious troll is obvious I guess
Someone who is suffering may be more easily susceptible to coercion from someone to end their own life. They be be feeling like a burden and instead of a compassionate society that puts programs in place so they don’t feel like a burden, your f-ed up society puts programs in place so they can just off themselves. Sick. Plain out sick.
You’re being both cynical and sarcastic at once, right Kelly? Admirable!
I’m assuming that this is ironic! But the last paragraph probably does reflect the real thinking of those who promote these horrible new laws.
It is compassionate to take a person’s life from them? If they say “yes, go ahead,” that’s a moral green light?
Stupid.Stupid.Stupid. If you are poor then your only source of income is very likely a dole from your government which now includes your state pension you thought you had spent 50 years paying into ie contributing to society,or in other words participating in a PONZI scheme that is finally reaching the point of collapse in the whole Western system. If your government decides it would be more economic not to pay you any money because they prefer to send it to Ukraine,then your life stops,you lose your home,you can’t eat,you can’t pay bills.
That is not a choice situation. That is murder.
Life is not a given; it is a gift. As such, it is sacred. Canadians have lost the sense of the sacred.
What’s wrong with assisting poor people to not be poor, instead of killing them for Christs’s sake!
That costs money, and the rich don’t like sharing hence the ever growing inequality in the west
Most Canadian provinces provide ample social services, including welfare and free healthcare.
“Poverty” is a relative concept, and while it is hard to be struggling financially, I suspect that the condition leading to wanting to die is actually “depression” rather than “poverty”.
The chart citing “inability to receive medical treatment” mystifies me, as — apart from the (relatively small number of) homeless (who sadly fall through the cracks)— everyone in Canada is included in their province’s healthcare plan, cradle to grave.
Canada’s MAID program has become the very definition of the concept of “a slippery slope”.
Yes but I expect someone in the accounts department has worked out how much money they could save by topping retirees etc. After all most western governments now especially our UK one seems more keen on giving money to that dirty mafia criminal Zelensky and his toad faced wife.
Blame Canada….haha. Canada is what a Middle Class nation becomes when it loses its soul. Everyone polite, non-judgemental, honest, and soulless…. Much like Urban Californians; but that Canadians are polite.
Well, look at the silly nincompoop they keep electing as Prime Minister…
There are days I hope the US balkanizes so Canada does as well (which it would) and I can move to a red state in the new Diagonaland or whatever. I increasingly feel like I share no common ground with the people of Toronto, Montreal and other cities that elect our federal government. I remain horrified at what ugly little authoritarians most Canadians were during Covid.
I just don’t get it. Why are these attitudes gathering momentum in Canada of all places? And where are they coming from, as in, what’s the underlying source? On the face of it I would not have ever guessed that Canada is the sort of country that could go this direction.
And it’s very very ominous – it implies coming waves of sensibility change across the developed world, which are alien to all second half of the twentieth century thought, although it clearly can’t be said that they are alien to the first half.
Am I wrong in thinking that the driving spirit behind these cultural shifts is the late millennials and zoomers, who have been completely stiffed by the older generations around them?
I would suggest that Canada has fully embraced progressivism with its emphasis on the individual and the primacy of an individual’s subjective experience and beliefs over objective reality. A person should be allowed to kill themselves, and assisted to do so painlessly, simply because they want to: they are exercising the paramount right of an individual to choose and it is probably insulting, in the view of progressives, to even question the wisdom of that person’s decision.
As to why Canada is so progressive in every respect, I can only speculate it’s due to a potent combination of a relatively wealthy society with a long history of a strong welfare state (hence acceptance of government involvement in people’s lives), plus a young population which, for the reasons that afflict all Western nations, finds little hope in the future so have opted for what amounts to nihilism.
I am a longtime supporter of assisted suicide for people with debilitating, incurable disease provided they were counselled about all available options, especially people with terminal disease. I did not accept the slippery slope argument about where assisted suicide would lead. I might have been wrong about that.
I have spoken to many in the situation where they watch suffering, especially in their immediate elderly relatives, and the final release seems to come as a relief from watching harrowing distress in loved ones who are a shell of their former selves. And yet, for me, the idea of assisted dying goes completely against every bit of my being. I can see a whole bunch of rational arguments in favor that I cannot easily argue against, and yet I cannot bring myself to buy into any version of assisted dying. The idea instantly generates anathema in me no matter the sanity of the pro arguments.
I’m having trouble imagining a rational argument in favor of “assisted suicide”. The reasons
in favor I tend to hear are sentimental: something like, “it feels bad to know this person is suffering.” Or, “it would be so much easier if this person were dead, and no longer our burden.”
Of course there is also a profit motive, but this seldom stated.
But beyond that, for me, I would find it impossible to support the expressed wish of someone who explicitly states they want to die because they are in excruciating pain. It just goes against the grain, for me. That’s the poser.
I would find it impossible not to support them.
I might be badly paraphrasing, but Jonathan sumtion had a very interesting argument in his Reith lectures. He said that the law in UK should stay the same but individuals should always push against it in individual cases to help loved ones end suffering. It would still risk prosecution but his explanation suggested that in obvious cases of ending suffering people would not be prosecuted.
Sorry if I butchered his explanation but I think you can still find his ideas on BBC iPlayer radio – Reith lectures
Thank you, I’ll search for the lectures and take a look.
I think this is pretty much what is happening now, and in many ways the law is not applied to obvious cases of life-destroying illness.
Unfortunately there are many people in insufferable pain who can’t bring themselves to ask for assistance from their partners – just in case the laws might get “over applied” in their case.
Its a tricky dilemna.
Indeed, the ‘rational’ in so many rational arguments invariably seems to coincide with the desires of the one claiming to be rational. But if getting your own way is always rational to you, how could there be any counter argument. I still occasionally shudder at the memory of the bullshit I spoke out loud when I was young, and silently thank those wiser heads who laughed at me.
I suspect that you could easily draw up a list of rational reasons For as well as Against, should you wish to do so.
Love is not sane, that’s what makes it special. No one who truly loves someone would countenance an end to life built on rational efficiency, nor I feel (feel because I have no objective evidence, only my moral conscience), would they require someone they loved to possibly endure the remorse and guilt that might follow should they feel pressured into supporting this form of murder.
We in the ‘civilised’ west currently live in a culture that values the atomised self and the self absorption that this entails. A cult of youth has developed that fails to challenge the young, with regards to the balance between the duties and responsibilities required in a cohesive society and the selfishness of only putting one’s own desires first. Many young people, like many before them (it might even reach double digits) will eventually mature and start thinking about life for themselves, it will not take us back but it will take us somewhere different. Those who do not grow and mature (there are many, as we have daily proof) will never think for themselves; but they will always follow. It will happen anyway, no matter how we challenge it, society will always have more cultural clout than parents in a society that can only see change (and only change) as a moral good. Give it a thousand years and everyone will be laughing at our stupidity.
Are your feelings any different for vets putting down animals in excruciating pain ?
Yes, if in excruciating pain.
I think you might be asking a very pertinent question here, that is often overlooked as a test case. Many within the veterinary profession certainly do not view an animal’s life as being intrinsically less valuable than a human one, and yet will euthanise animals on a weekly or daily basis for many reasons other than the ending of unmanageable suffering in its worst forms. I include myself in this, rightly or wrongly (but in a spirit of honesty our profession is often uncomfortable expressing).
I often fear doctors are blind to the possibility of the options “elective” euthanasia puts on the table in the management of cases. From a veterinary perspective it is not the case that euthanasia is the last option in a long sequence of decisions and outcomes, but is always available and hangs over any difficult situation.
*My primary work is with horses where difficulty in managing non-lethal conditions often leads to euthanasia on welfare grounds.
I seem to remember reading that were very high suicide rates amongst vets. I have always assumed (rightly or wrongly) that this is down to having to put down animals that owners can’t/won’t pay to treat.
So the point of so called assisted suicide is to enable family members to escape the distress of dealing with the decline and death of older family members?
But that’s the point. It’s all about ME. They say “I was in agony watching my parent,my granny,my auntie die a long drawn out agonising death,they shouldn’t have had to suffer like that,it was distressing”. But it was distressing to YOU,the observer. It is not your place to act upon that distress. Only to feel it.
It’s selfish and ALL ABOUT YOU to want the distress removed. Both my parents died quiet peaceful deaths. A lot of people do. We are fed this horror scenario to get us in line and signed up to the project. No,I didn’t have the distress of seeing my parents suffer and I care not in the slightest if you did. Serves you right.
I agree with all of your sentiments, which serve to emphasise the need to establish a framework around assisted dying that is so explicit that the risk of “slippery slope” outcomes is minimal – and requires further new legislation.
Canada is two faced. The nice, kind face it presents on the global stage, and the reality. Justin Trudeau froze the bank accounts of dissidents during lockdown.
While a pretty aggressive move to counter an aggressive protest, those accounts were frozen for about a week. National governments, like individual human beings with few exceptions, are two-faced (at a minimum) to one degree or another. That doesn’t render them purely false or evil, just all too human.
It was a totalitarian move. I stand by my point. Canada is two faced as it projects a nice, kind face whilst silencing dissenters: another example – Jordan Peterson.
A reductive characterization you “stand by ” on a sympathetic board. Good one. About 64% of Canadians disagreed with the decision, as I do:
Support for Freezing The Bank Accounts And Credit Cards Of Trucker Protest Organizers:
Is the word Canada to you synonymous with the Trudeau government, or specific actions taken by him? Is the US interchangeable with Biden or Trump, or every Russian in lockstep march with Putin?
Canadian niceness is a stereotype with some statistical truth, not a universal verity. But that’s true of every stereotype, including American ignorance/folksiness and British refinement/snobbery.
But it is the contrast between the niceness and the totalitarian behaviour. Kind of like the kind, genial, friendly man being a bully in the home. Jekyll and Hyde behaviour. It would be expected of Russia. Canadians seemed to just accept it even if they disagreed.
Another confident coast-to-coast sneer. At first it was the action of one man (Trudeau) and now those in the minority who agreed with his action who represent the monstrous true face of Canada, you say. Or even those who oppose it because they didn’t overturn Trudeau’s regime or revolt in the streets, during covid restrictions? I know many Albertans who sided with the truckers–but they also know the country isn’t a convenient caricature.
[update: got it wrong in my haste to be right…dang fellow Canayjuns supported that overreach]
Are you Canadian perchance? I am English and have experienced many decades of anti-English sentiment when travelling. So much so, it came as a pleasant surprise to experience pro-English sentiment in Fiji, Portugal (though this may well have changed), and in a mountain village in Samos, Greece, where some elderly Greek men insisted on buying myself and my travelling companion ouzo because the English and the Greeks had been allies during WWII. When you travel a lot, and live in different countries, you do develop different ideas of the countries. Canada seemed to me to behave like teacher’s pet with its political correctness, and now wokism is spreading across the world. I wasn’t aware at first of the dark underbelly.
I’m a dual citizen but I’ve lived in the U.S. since the age of 7. So I do know what its like to encounter blanket or widespread animus when traveling. I don’t like being group-associated with American tendencies, real or perceived, which I doubt you appreciated as a Brit abroad.
I see I misread the poll that I wanted to support my point above. Most Canadians supported the bank account freeze. I didn’t, but I also didn’t follow it with great attention (obviously) and didn’t support the trucker blockade. Divisive issue and times, but I guess knee-jerk majoritarianism kind of won out there.
You don’t mention Canada in your travels yet you have such forceful and negative views about how they seem. By all means, trust the wisdom of your nationalized character keys as much as you like. I’m not saying your generalizations have no validity, but suggesting they have less than you seem to assert, and that you will find undue confirmation once you take those stereotypes too seriously. I’m a half-Canadian who considers himself kind overall, but has never been very nice. And my Northern breed is not a rare one in my experience living and visiting Canada. That’s all from me for now.
I have lived in Canada. My opinion is based on experience. Maybe not being Canadian at all, I was more objective. I think it is possible to make general statements about a group without thinking it is true of every member of the group. For example French antipathy towards the English and French obsession with the purity of the French language (I think French is probably the most beautiful spoken language in the world when spoken by the French). A comment further down references the Canadian tendency to look down on the United States. Maybe it’s Canadian niceness that resulted in those who objected to the freezing of bank accounts staying quiet.
Of course it’s possible, and valid to a point. But you lean heavily on your shortcuts. That’s what I distrust. Were the Convoy crowd and their supporters a small band, or one that fits neatly under your broad brush?
Would you accept ,all at once, the “objectivity” of foreigners’ generalizations concerning the English?
However, I admit that the part about Canadian condescension toward Americans is too true, generally speaking.
I think you can learn a lot from outsiders’ perceptions of groups. I was unaware of the North American stereotypes of the English. I think national stereotypes vary depending on the country doing the stereotyping. When living in a different country, you tend to notice difference most. The English stereotype of Canadians was nice but boring (it excludes Quebec). This could well be changing. I don’t know.
I fully agree with your latest general observations. I have an idea of how the English perceive Americans–it’s often openly expressed on these comment boards–and try not to reinforce the worst of that oft-deserved reputation. But I can’t always help myself.
My preference is to emphasize what is essentially the same or universal across nations and groups. Yet prevailing if not ruling differences certainly exist. I still think it’s best to avoid a too convenient moral or characterological legend/ hierarchy in which Canadians, as a group, are two-faced and Russians expansionist, the English supercilious, etc.
I wouldn’t describe any other nation as two-faced. I think it is uniquely Canadian (or was before the spread of wokism) and it is epitomised by the choice of prime minister: Justin Trudeau.
Wow. Just absurd. Haha!
I see elements of justice and balance in your comments but many devolve in simplistic rules-of-thumb or “epitomes” that you seem to regard as oracular guides.
“Now entering Canada: Beware of our two-faced nation until you can return to England, or another country of origin that has banished duplicity”.
What does Britain’s choice of Boris (then Liz, then Rishi) say that is reliable or sufficiently true about the whole nation to be meaningful? I’m sure you’ve got one, if not for your own nation (not objective enough yeah?) then perhaps the last two US presidential winners.
National characters are not the same as individual characters and individual behaviour is often very different from group behaviour. I have no idea why you are so annoyed, in the past, the French considered the English two faced: Les Anglais avec la figure si triste et la derriere si gaie. Though I think it has changed. I am actually very interested in hearing about how the English are viewed stereotypically by other countries.
(I’m annoyed because nothing resembling a discussion or fair-minded exchange seems possible with you, at least not on this topic).
We just disagree. I think it is possible to identify National behaviours and characteristics – you don’t. A Spanish friend of mine told me he admired the English because they accepted that taxes should be paid. He said the Spanish don’t and in Spain there is no shame in tax avoidance. It might have been something he noticed because his father was in politics.
Your arguments are not good and you are annoyed so you want me to be annoyed too. I prefer civilised debate. I would far rather learn from you. I would actually like to know why it upsets you so.
You don’t want nor do you think you can learn from me. Your inquiry into my annoyance is insincere, except for the purpose of your own amusement. In my view, you are not engaged in a good faith exchange, but a dismissive doubling and tripling down. A female version of one-upmanship? Fine, we disagree. Bye.
I’m not interested in competing stereotypes, especially as a pathway to any real understanding (yes, it is mildly interesting in a cultural sense). I’ll take some responsibility for this (to me) fruitless exchange and say: See you another board. Good evening to you, at 19:50 GMT.
I am being perfectly genuine. I have absolutely no idea why you are so upset. I quoted a renowned French philosopher, I wish I could remember his name, who seemed to think it was perfectly valid to make statements about an entire nation. The Spanish man who made the comment is a cosmologist. He thought it was perfectly normal to discuss national characteristics. I don’t suppose either of them ever thought every single member of a nation actually shared the characteristic. Why would you bring sex into the discussion apart from pure sexism. Would you feel better about not being able to convert a man to your position.
It’s not coming from a sexist place. But it was a bit of a cheap shot, though intended in a humorous vein, and I’ll take it back if you’ll allow me to. This is not a debate nor a good-natured, nor a very interesting exchange. Agreed?
I have allowed that there is some validity in your point(s) of view, aside from any weight that might be borrowed from a philosopher’s opinion.
Opinions and assumptions and adages are not “arguments” at all, though they can be argumentative in tone. “Conversion” or major movement in pre-existing views is always a long shot–especially in the short term–but there should be something happening beyond mere gainsaying or dismissal of one’s interlocutor. I’ve lost my appetite for this elaborated disagreement that shows no prospect of mutual understanding.
I have a hard time letting what I perceive as provocations or insults go, and I request that you let this one go from your side. Neither shall convert the other here. Chalk it up to some characteristic Canadian-Americanness on my part if you like.
Actually I wouldn’t consider it a Canadian trait. As to it being a US trait, I have absolutely no idea. I am actually happy to disagree, I find it interesting that you think it is a defence of Trudeau that the freezing of bank accounts only lasted a week. I think he only stopped because of the international outcry. A large section of the rest of the world was shocked because they had such a different idea of Canada because of all the proclamations about upholding human rights. It was a totalitarian move. It was a passive act of war when applied to Russia. I wasn’t shocked, I knew about the hypocrisy. I was shocked when I first discovered the level of hypocrisy within institutions in Canada. I agreed with the truck drivers, having risked their lives (maybe) by continuing to work before COVID vaccinations were developed, they should not be obliged/forced to have the vaccination to continue working if they did not want to.
Ok, I’m willing to move this far: It was an instance of government overreach that was reminiscent of totalitarianism.
Rather less so than trying to overturn an election through heedless and extraordinary means however. Agreed?
What has that got to do with what goes on in Canada?
Nice evasion. Now you want strict geographic and topical parameters?
It’s a genuine question. Plus, I don’t know what really happened and am disinclined to take a position. I have a strong opinion on Canada because I lived there for some years and my view of Canada is consistent with recent revelations.
It doesn’t strictly concern Canada at all of course, but what does or doesn’t earn the label “totalitarian”.
Having lived both at home and abroad: Do you have a one or two word characterization of England/the English? (If that’s not too far afield of the original topic of assisted suicide in Canada).
England is such a rapidly changing country, its not really homogenous in the way it was. In the past I would have said stoic (stiff upper lip), its acceptance of eccentricity as normal, if that makes sense, and a tendency towards self mockery. I can give you my analysis of some of the tensions existing between the EU and the U.K. before brexit. The EU has numerous, what many consider ridiculous, rules and laws. It doesn’t bother the Germans because they tend to blindly follow rules and laws. It doesn’t bother the Italians, Spanish or French because they generally ignore rules or laws they disagree with. It did bother the English because they tend to obey the law and abide by the rules but object to unreasonable laws or rules. They complain a lot whilst obeying. Lots of stereotyping there.
Referring to the eccentricity, the phrase – mad dogs and Englishmen – comes to mind.
I do find that interesting and well-expressed, thank you.
Not that you asked and, in addition to my built-in lack of distance, America’s 330M seem hard to sum up, but I’d offer these paired generalities: open/ill-informed and crude-but-kind. Right now we’re also more anxious, angry, and violent than average but that hasn’t defeated our stubborn optimism, mine anyway.
I admire your nation’s comparative openness to eccentricity, and a certain brand of smart silliness that’s evident in much of your comedy.
Thank you for that. I appreciate your insights into the America (US) character. It’s good to conclude a debate on a positive note.
(And though it’s common usage–in the U.S. and elsewhere–I should be more careful to avoid the cultural self-centeredness of referring to one country, among the twenty-something in the Americas, as America).
I know, but us Brits have almost always referred to the US as America and referred to other American countries by their names. So for us there is no confusion. I guess it just short for the United States of America, but I am aware there are American (referring to the actual continent) sensitivities.
Right. I was responding to what I thought was a gentle correction on your part. As you know, even the oft-mocking Canadians tend to use America instead of USA, though North America is also more common there.
You seem to be confused:
65% AGREED WITH the government freezing the accounts.
Only a minority were against it.
Aye. My mistake. Saw what I wanted to there.
Show me a Western country that is true to its “global face”. That’s my point. You’re also making Canada a one-face nation though it is very divided like the US and UK.
Individuals are generally complex but they tend to have a particular way of presenting themselves,
That’s fair enough but nation states aren’t individuals and tendencies and presentations are understood by many to be only that. I’ll try to avoid mere contrarianism by agreeing that Canada’s PMs have often trafficked in a stereotypically Canadian, surface niceness.
Groups have common characteristics. To a certain extent members share a value system and condemn and condone certain behaviours.
But your bank account be it a few pence or a few millions is not in ANY WAY the “government” of your countries business. Especially if you pay the legal amount of tax pertaining to your status.
Calling them mere dissidents whitewashes their obnoxious and destructive behaviour.
It was a totalitarian move. I stand by my point. Canada is two faced as it projects a nice kind face whilst silencing dissenters: another example – Jordan Peterson.
Has Jordan Peterson been silenced? I bought two of his books and he’s among the most well-known and influential public intellectuals of recent times, though his sense of perspective and humor now seems to have abandoned him.
Persecuted. I believe he mostly lives in the USA. Currently, he is being investigated by The College of Psychologists:
Jordan Peterson says he has no intention of giving up his fight with Ontario’s psychologist regulatory body, accusing the college of attempting to stymie his speech and discipline him for his political opinions.
The College of Psychologists of Ontario has ordered Peterson — who has gained international fame for his bestselling self-help books and lectures — to undergo a media training program, saying some of his tweets may be “degrading” the profession and even raise questions about his abilities as a psychologist.
His fame and recent publishing is attendant on the controversy generated by his defiant stance on speech codes, and later, many other things woke. He was totally obscure on a national or international level prior to the uproar. In my opinion, you use terms like persecution and totalitarianism too freely. I agree he has been unfairly treated and harassed by many.
I knew of him not because of the controversy surrounding him but because I had discovered his absolutely brilliant lectures on the Old Testament on YouTube. I came across the Cathy Newman interview because I was looking for more of his lectures. I was unaware of how bigoted and ignorant some of the msm in the U.K. are until I watched that interview. I don’t believe he ever courted controversy. To me he seems genuine. A man of great principle. I really appreciate all I have learnt from him and am grateful he posted the lectures. I had been searching for a Jungian interpretation of the Old Testament for quite a few years and his lectures fit perfectly with the ideas I am developing. It seemed serendipitous. Incidentally, the French also used to call England perfidious Albany. I actually find that interesting and it concurs with les Anglais avec le visage si triste et la deirriere si gaie.
That’s good (sincerely). I watched several hours of those lectures too. I also watched his long debates with Sam Harris and many hours of other talks he’s done, whether as panelist, interviewer, or interviewee. And I read most of his two non-academic books (haven’t attempted Maps of Meaning), which I think were competently but not superbly well written.
I admire and respect him and think he’s genuine, but to me his views have moved from insightfully anti-establishment toward the reactionary deep end. Understandable given what he’s faced in his professional and personal life. Quite a brilliant man, one to whom I’ll continue to pay some attention.
I do think it’s less likely you’d have found those lectures on YouTube if the controversy hadn’t moved him up the search algorithm, so to speak. That’s not to say his work or perspective lacks intrinsic interest and worth. Far from it.
You could be right. I googled Jung and Old Testament. I had been googling Jung and Old Testament for years previously. Over twenty years ago, I asked the dean of the local cathedral if he knew of a Jungian interpretation of the Old Testament. He didn’t. He gave me a book on analysing the Old Testament. I thought I was going to have to try and do it myself. I had done a little but not much. On YouTube, I had listened to all the standard stuff directly related to Jung’s works. Jordan Peterson’s lectures never topped my search, I had to scroll past a lot of other videos, most of which, over the years, I had listened to or watched. I had listened to a very large number of various different lectures on Jung and God, mostly related to Jung’s works. I checked the upload date and it is 5 years, the same as the same as the cathy Newman interview. Maybe he uploaded them when he became well known through the Cathy Newman interview. I listened to the Old Testament lectures before the cathy Newman interview because that was my actual interest. I watched the cathy Newman interview afterwards because I thought it would be a discussion about his analysis of the OT. I would prefer he produce more lectures on the OT from a selfish point of view.
When he keeps his composure and avoids ideological/political contention–and even sometimes when he doesn’t–he often seems quite brilliant, inspired even.
his work on the OT is definitely inspired – breath of the gods. I don’t really watch or listen to his other videos.
It actually lionizes it. Like calling the Jan 6 rioters (or 2020 Portland mobs) “protesters”.
SATAN is the source.
The problem to me (as a Canadian) is not that this choice is available to those who truly want to take it (I think if someone really wants to die, they may as well be provided a humane option to do so) – it is that we are not providing adequate support and services as a society to those who need it – such that living doesn’t feel like a workable choice for them. That is what is appalling to me – not euthanasia itself.
Exactly, that is what is so shocking about this. It seems that 25% of Canadians think it is a better option to let poor people die than to help them to live decently.
I don’t know if that’s how people feel, quite so explicitly. I also think the framing of this article is a bit off – it’s more like a significant minority of Canadians think you should be able to do this for whatever reason you want – so whatever reason you give, they’ll accept. It’s a bit disingenuous to say they’re super gung ho for these reasons specifically.
Additionally, though it is clear we don’t care enough about people’s suffering – I don’t think many actively want it, more so that they’re not bothered enough to push for any meaningful change.
We are best understood as extremely, pathologically passive aggressive.
Yes, helping our poor and our elderly people to live decent lives by supporting their needs in the community would be the most humane way for our society to operate. No one should have to suffer in poverty in this wealthy country ! It is disgraceful! I personally would prefer death if I could no longer afford to live decently in Canadian society, and had no one to care for me. Extended Care facilities for the frail elderly are where we shelve them, to wait to die, often of loneliness! I do not fear death, I fear suffering.
If I can’t live decently I’ll live indecently in roaring fashion and defy them.
As a Canada-born dual citizen with much extended family “up there”, I feel entitled to take a cheap shot: Legendary Canadian niceness has always had a dark side–but wow.
The ultimate irreversible overreaction to a (likely) temporary problem! At least for now the proposed exit would remain the decision of the impoverished candidates themselves, yes? The next stage could be A Modest Proposal where the chronically impecunious can be declared terminally insolvent. This life-or-death type of materialism would seem more stereotypically American in the abstract (a balancing cheap shot).
As with the fires roaring in my home province of Alberta right now, there are times when I’m glad to be on the southern side of the divide. I doubt this declared rationale for self-slaughter will become legal though. Hope not.
I’m a first generation immigrant to Canada, although I returned to the UK after spending most of my teens and all of my 20s in the great white north (most of that time in Alberta!). All the rest of my family stayed, though, and I do retain a Canadian passport, keep in touch with events there and visit often. I have some skin in this discussion. My mother’s partner was diagnosed with a very aggressive, terminal, form of brain cancer in spring 2020 (left undiagnosed for far too long because BC Health had become a covid only service, but that’s another story). He had made it very clear when MAID was introduced that if he developed a terminal illness where suffering was the only prospect, that he wanted to end his life that way. So he did, at home and with as much dignity as he could, in my mother’s arms. I won’t gainsay his decision in such a circumstance but will say that there’s been an alarming mission creep with MAID since then and it seems to be morphing into a convenient means to cleanse Canadian society of socially ‘burdensome’ people. Chilling and not the kind of thing I’d associated with the country of my 2nd citizenship. As you imply, it’s the kind of hyper-individualism one would associate primarily with the United States that Canadians routinely look down on. I’m headed there in a week – hope I don’t succumb to unexpected poverty …
Thank you for the personal testimony, sir. Despite her enduring Christian belief, there was talk in the family of having my 90-something-year-old grandma take this same “trip” a few years ago, in California or Oregon (more permissive at the time). Although I share the marrow-deep revulsion for “assisting” or hastening death that Mr. Kotak mentions above, her suffering and desire to meet her maker according to her faith were both great and hard to witness.
I’m glad she endured and died naturally–medical interventions notwithstanding–but the manner and slowness of her passing has made my feelings less absolute. I still don’t think poverty or any changeable or superficial condition should be considered a justification for suicide under the law.
Are we approaching a place where schoolyard taunts such as “you’re so ugly/stupid/poor you should kill yourself” get acted on without legal or social barriers? Not quite I’d say, but I strongly agree that mission creep is evident already, with non-terminal and mental suffering now qualifying, in in some cases, for a guided exit.
Nine months of winter and Trudeau as their prime minister. Is it that much of a mystery why so many Canadians want to kill themselves.
The problem is that we have huge numbers of people, across the developed world, who are economically inactive or earn very low wages. Most of them are of low intelligence, are morbidly obese, and/or have ‘mental health’ – type disabilities, often self-diagnosed or colluded with to keep them off the employment statistics. It is not sustainable for working people to keep them indefinitely and their numbers are growing. At the same time, more and more people are in poverty because of rising energy costs.
The solution is obvious, certainly in the UK. Many of those people are riding about on their mobility scooters directly on top of vast coal reserves, mined by their ancestors. Rather than putting down the poor, we need to sink some pits, open some new generation coal fired power stations and get them, or at least their children, working for decent wages. Jobs, cheaper energy and some hope for depressed areas and people. What’s not to like?!
We need a bit of caution in assessing the comparable stats. The nature of the law in each country where some euthanasia permissible will part-determine what is recorded as medically assisted and what is not but had an element of assistance – e.g: just a bit more morphine through the syringe driver etc.
One of the great moral questions we will increasingly debate as western populations age for sure.
No surprises and extending to the rest of the developed world as poverty becomes more entrenched and Boomers age and their numbers/state liabilities take economies down. 20% of the UK working age population isn’t working. The proportion of those who cannot afford to pay their own way will presumably be on the euthanasia radar in coming years.
The article suffers from the huge Liberal/Lefty Blind spot they carry everywhere when looking at reality….
I mean, where are the real euthanasia numbers? How twisted a society is it that worries about the intentional death of the terminally ill (which it should) but never even reflects on the truly horrible side of the same act? So 10,000 euthanizations?
How about the:
”with approximately 74,000 abortions reported in 2020.” (Canada)
”National Abortion Federation Canada Quick facts Budget 2021 committed $45 million over three years, starting in 2021-22, to improve access to sexual and reproductive health care support, information, and services for people in Canada who face the greatest barriers to access.”
”reproductive health” hahaaa, like calling this killing the old as ‘Elder Care Health” haha
Gotta rip those babies out and flush them….and it does not even get a mention on a euthanization article – not even in passing… What a sad world you lefties have created.
At the end of the Punic Wars Rome tore Carthage apart stone by stone and salted the fields and killed the people – in much part because the Carthaginians did human sacrifice of babies – and Rome thought that so beyond the Pale they decided the society had lost its right to exist.
Much the same attitude in ways – to the Spanish conquering the human sacrifice death cults of the Americas. They thought it irredeemable.
How would they think of the West in 2023? I do not think they would find us very admirable. I doubt they would wish to emulate us.
So every account of unnatural death should pivot back to and emphasize your area of greatest concern?
It’s one way of eliminating poverty, I suppose.
Shame on these people!
Unless you measure poverty in relative terms…
Poor? ( by Canadian standards ) No problem. Many of your fellow citizens think it’s OK for you to commit suicide with the government’s help. In other words, let’s use taxpayer dollars to alleviate poverty by helping the poor kill themselves. It’s hard to believe that rational people can think like this, but… there it is.
It’s called progressive thinking. To object would be euthanasiaphobia.
Well, yeah…all that’s well & good. But suppose some of those undesirables DON’T want to seek Medical Assistance in Dying? Suppose they insist on a clinging to a life that the majority of us would reasonably disdain or even abhor? What then?
Could we not MANDATE Medical Assistance in Dying? MMAID?
I mean surely we all recognize that We Know Best What’s Best for Them (and we know who they are)…. Clearly we do when it comes to vaccines, toilet flushing, gasoline engines, gas stoves, water flow rates in shower heads, pronouns, Big Gulps, and girl’s sports (to name but a few of my favorite things). Why not when it comes to the value of life?
Suppose we have someone who is clearly mentally disordered (like maybe a Toxic Male Non-Progressive…or someone who insists that boys cannot become girls, not even if they click their heels together)…suppose they drive a vintage ’68 Mustang GT (like McQueen in ‘Bullitt’) and eat steak from methane generating cows?
I mean their lives are not only NOT benefitting the Global Community, they’re actively working against ‘our greater good’.
MMAID does have a certain ring to it!
I bet we can get well more than a measly 20% voting in favor!
It would be interesting to see if the number of suicides has decreased with the rise of assisted suicide
At least those who choose euthanasia cannot change their minds after the fact to sue the taxpayers, unless one believes resurrection from the dead will soon be the new norm.
Too many people seem to conflate euthanasia (deliberately ending a person’s life to relieve suffering) and assisted suicide (deliberately assisting a person to kill themselves).
The latter is very clearly about the right of the individual to choose – and seek help to achieve their desired outcome.
It’s a shame that the article didn’t discuss the difference in depth.
The easier something is to do, the more people are going to do it. Same as the Americans making guns freely available means lots more suicide by blowing your head off, the Canadians making it easy for the doctors to give you a potion means many people will take that option instead of struggling through life.
Ultimately it’s a decision for the Canadians, if a majority are happy with their system leave them to it
The legalisation of assisted suicide would give to a High Court judge in the Family Division such power over life and death as no judge in this country had enjoyed since the abolition of capital punishment. My paternal grandfather was born before such working-class men could vote, and my maternal ancestors included African slaves, Indian indentured labourers, and Chinese coolies. We who come off the lower orders and the lesser breeds, and perhaps especially those of us who are disabled, know perfectly well who would be euthanised, and how, and why.
Even if we had made it past the industrial scale abortion that disproportionately targeted us, then we would face euthanasia as yet another lethal weapon in the deadly armoury of our mortal enemies, alongside their wars, alongside their self-indulgent refusal to enforce the drug laws, alongside Police brutality and other street violence, alongside the numerous life-shortening consequences of economic inequality, and alongside the restoration of the death penalty, which is more likely than it has been in two generations, and which would not be repealed if the Prime Minister were a former Director of Public Prosecutions.
All this, and the needle, too? This is class and race war, and we must fight to the death. That death must not be ours, but the death of the global capitalist system. Having subjected itself to that system to a unique extent, Britain is uniquely placed to overthrow it, and to replace it with an order founded on the absolute sanctity of each individual human life from the point of fertilisation to the point of natural death. That foundation would and could be secured only by absolute fidelity to the only global institution that was irrevocably committed to that principle, including the full range of its economic, social, cultural and political implications.
This is terrifying.
I’m not surprised. I’ve always thought once you open the doors more and more categories get included. I hate,despise and loathe those mealy mouthed people on radio phone ins who say with mock humility,” when the time comes I want to just slip away,I dont want to be any trouble to anyone”. Well,that’s not me. I intend to be a roaring troublesome demented old bat and the more trouble I can be the better.
This would solve the housing problem nicely. Can’t find a place to live that costs less than your entire income? Justin has the answer!: kill yourself.
I would like to se how “opposing Trudeau’s policy” scores on this test. Famous doctors in history include Hippocrate, Pasteur and Joseph Mengele
I fear the canadian
health medical system may need to think wisely about its goals
The more the better in Canada!
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