Macron’s Citizens’ Convention on the End of Life: 7 Reasons to Object

25/03/2022

1/ Bill on Advanced Age and Autonomy abandoned sine die

Although the pandemic and the nursing home crisis have clearly showed the urgent need for this reform, the bill on old age and autonomy has been postponed sine die. And yet, fighting against the “social death” of dependent elderly people and providing access to quality palliative care are unquestionably the humanitarian issues to be addressed.

2/ A citizens’ convention to better manipulate citizens

French citizens are like the scalded cat which is afraid of cold water… We have learnt enough from the National Consultations on Bioethics and the Citizens’ Convention on Climate: we are asked to take part, to listen, to communicate… But when the result is unpleasant to the government, the President makes the decision alone, reducing the participation in the decision-making process to what he decides it to be.

3/ The indecent electoral motive

Why make this promise now? It is easy to see through President Macron who is candidate for French presidential election. Mr. Macron thinks that the debate on euthanasia will appeal to “left-wing” voters and compensate for his “right-wing” measures. Lately, he tampered with the abortion issue. But can human life be considered as a variable to be adjusted?

4/ Why consent to a rhetorical trap?

The French are being misled by the deceitful choice between “suffer or die”. Emmanuel Macron can but know that euthanasia is nothing but a priority– neither for the left nor the right. Euthanasia is being imposed by an influential lobby who has been stirring up the fear and apprehension of “unbearable suffering” and denying the violence of death by euthansia.

5/ Pontius Pilate Washing His Hands?

When a candidate takes a clear stand, voters know what to expect. But Mr. Macron’s promise of a “citizens’ convention” without revealing his opinion adds even more ambiguity to his favourite word: “at the same time”. Let’s not be gullible, especially as we know that the past 5 years were a complete disaster in terms of bioethics.

6/ Hiding behind the Ethics Committee Shield

The announcement is made just when a group from the French Ethics National Committee (CCNE) is preparing new recommendations at the request of President Macron. And the CCNE is working on unusual and exceptional cases, but the Belgian case proves that it is precisely the exception made to the prohibition to kill which leads to larger transgressions.

7/ No Ontological Arguments

For the bioethics law, there had been a meeting to discuss euthanasia, and President Macron had decided against including it in the revision of the law. What has changed since? Is it really well-timed, knowing the turmoil this will bring in our hospital system, already in crisis? This announcement comes as a hard blow and shows a total lack of direction.

Warning! Whenever the issue of putting someone to death is debated, people with psychological suffering will plead to be “finished” with life. Society must be extremely careful about the message it sends to these persons: suicide prevention can have no exception. No citizen is unworthy of living and being cared for; no disease can make someone “eligible for euthanasia”. On the contrary, those who suffer the most should receive the most assistance and be accompanied with dignity until the end of their life.

In 2022: Humanity first.

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New CCNE notice: Rethinking Healthcare System Based on Ethics

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Following the publication in September of a notice opening the door to the legalisation of euthanasia and assisted suicide, the CCNE (Comité Consultatif National d’Ethique) has just issued a new notice, number 140, headed “Rethinking Healthcare System Based on Ethics”.

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