Saturday 12 July 2014

Peter Saunders on George Carey on Assisted Suicide

I was interested to read this morning a piece in The Guardian reporting that George Carey, ‘former archbishop lends his support to campaign to legalise right to die’.

Having posted on previous occasions about assisted suicide (here, here, and here), I thought I’d link to this too.

Carey’s statement is available to read in The Daily Mail here.

The Times has a piece from Justin Welby (here, though you have to be a subscriber to see it online, or read page 22 of today’s newspaper), summed up in the headline: ‘Helping people to die is not truly compassionate.’

Helpfully quick off the mark is Peter Saunders on Why Lord Carey is so desperately wrong about legalising assisted suicide’.

Towards the end of the piece, he writes that ‘there is no discernible Christian world view underpinning what [Carey] says’:

‘Nothing of the fact that God made us and owns us; nothing of biblical morality or the sixth commandment; no doctrine of the Fall; little insight into the depths of human depravity and the need for strong laws to deter exploitation and abuse of vulnerable people; nothing of the cross or the resurrection; no hope beyond death; nothing of courage and perseverance in the face of suffering; no recognition of the need to make one’s peace with God and others before death; no real drive to make things better for dying patients and no real empathy with the feelings of vulnerable disabled and elderly people who fear a law like Falconer’s and will be campaigning in force outside parliament next Friday.

‘Carey has instead produced a piece that is high on emotion but weak on argument that capitulates to the spirit of the age; that enthrones personal autonomy above public safety; that sees no meaning or purpose in suffering; that appears profoundly naïve about the abuse of elderly and disabled people; that looks forward to no future beyond the grave and that could have been written by  a member of the national secular society, British humanist association or voluntary euthanasia society.’

Update (13 July 2014): Justin Welby’s article from The Times is now available here.

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