France is a step closer to legalizing Euthanasia. French lawmakers gave the green light to a law that will allow doctors to put terminally ill patients into sleep until they die.
This is in contrast to Eastern philosophies where a major requirement in life is “Awaken Before Death To Avoid Suffering.”
The vote passed by a huge majority with 436 in favor and 34 against. Pro euthanasia campaigners said the bill doesn’t go far enough. “Everyone says there is no suffering but nobody has ever been in that position (near death),” said Jean-Luc Romero, head of the Right to Die in Dignity association.
While euthanasia remains illegal in France, President Francoise Hollande promised in his 2012 presidential campaign to reexamine the law and now France has come up with a compromise of sorts. France will now allow doctors to put patients to sleep if they are terminally ill and in great pain.
“Sleep before death to avoid suffering,” MP Jean Leonetti said while summing up the law he had proposed. Polls show that by far the vast majority of French people are in favor of it: 96 percent. This drops only to 88 percent if doctors have to make a decision because a patient is unable to. The law provides for this and people will be able to draft “living wills” whereby they can legally bind doctors to administer the sleep-inducing drugs if they do not want to be kept artificially alive. It also included provisions that will give greater autonomy to families and friends of the ill person to express a patient’s wishes if they cannot speak. A law passed in 2005 already allows doctors to withhold lifesaving treatment but now France is a step closer to allowing euthanasia.
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