The cull of oldies in Holland continues. But the pace of progress is much too slow for that pioneer of modernity.
But not to worry. Reaching Holland’s legislature soon will be a “Completed Life Bill”, legalising killing healthy people who’ve lost some of their erstwhile joie de vivre.
As a lifelong champion of progress, and hence opponent of any kind of discrimination, I agree wholeheartedly. Why should anyone wait, as the current law demands, until he develops a terminal illness or dementia to claim sovereignty over his life?
The bill proposes that anyone over 75 will be able to make the request in the title above. Dutch doctors will doubtless oblige. Overworked as they are, they’ll welcome this reduction in their workload. And being civic-minded, they’ll be happy to reduce pressure on public services and finances.
If the new bill reaches parliament, it’s guaranteed to pass, enjoying as it does a cross-party support spearheaded by Prime Minister Mark Rutte. Still, for my taste the bill doesn’t go far enough. It’s still residually discriminatory.
What’s this reverse agism, favouring old fogies over younger persons who are simply fed up with life? Where’s the progress in that?
Fortunately I’m not the only one who feels that way. Supporters of the new bill don’t bother to deny that it’s but a stepping stone on the path to euthanasia on demand for anybody, regardless of age or health.
A 57-year-old man, appearing on a chat show in March, pointed out how discriminatory even the proposed law is: “I don’t feel like waiting 18 years. I want it now.” What, right in the studio?
Alexander Pechhold, the leader of the party proposing the bill, applauded. He then explained the philosophy behind the initiative: “In our civilisation dying is an individual consideration. You didn’t ask to be brought into the world.”
Who can possibly find fault with this thought? Nobody. Well, except perhaps a few incorrigible fossils who cling to the discredited belief that man descends from God rather than from King Kong via Darwin.
They might object that Mr Pechhold’s statement is self-refuting. That precisely because one didn’t ask to be brought into the world, one should be in no position to ask to be taken out of it. Those sticks in the mud may even invoke the obsolete notion of the sanctity of human life.
Though accusing the Dutch of playing materialistic games with life and death, it’s they who are really materialistic. They refuse to acknowledge the metaphysical anguish of a chap whose wife is bonking her psychoanalyst, or who can’t qualify for a mortgage to buy that flat in Keizersgracht.
Such a chap may well wish he were dead, and here’s the Dutch government with doctors in tow, responding on cue: “Your wish is our command. Here’s your syringe, mate.” Supply-demand at work, and isn’t that the essence of modernity?
The patient’s age or physical health shouldn’t even come into it. It’s his metaphysical agony that matters.
Even with the lamentable present constraints, Dutch doctors happily killed 6,091 people in 2016. Though still shockingly small, this number shows a steady increase year on year. That’s reassuring.
But it’s not reassuring enough. That’s why I think the Dutch should consider the initiative I’m hereby proposing: the euthanasia answer to Meals on Wheels.
Rather than waiting for desperate people to come to them, doctors should go out into the streets looking for euthanasia custom. To that end I propose a sort of ambulance service provisionally called The Josef Mengele Mobile Unit. The logo on the side of its vehicles could be based on the Hindu symbol favoured by the paymasters of the original Dr Mengele.
After dark the streets of Dutch cities are heaving with desperate people who feel like life is no longer worth living. The thought of euthanasia may not have crossed their minds yet, but then it should be up to the doctors to decide what’s best for the patients.
When spotting such a desperate individual in, say, Keizersgracht, burly male nurses can jump out of the Mengele Unit van and drag the patient inside. There are only two hard and fast rules for this medical procedure: hard and fast. If done properly, it’s guaranteed to overcome the patient’s resistance.
Inside the van he’ll be greeted by a doctor armed with a cyanide-loaded syringe. A quick jab, and the patient will be for ever cured of his earthly pain. His last thought will be gratitude to the people who took him out of this vale of tears, and to the government that had enabled them to do so.
This could be augmented by a parallel initiative, making euthanasia not just legal but compulsory for anyone reaching the age of 75. In due course, this cut-off point may be lowered in parallel with the voting age, but for the time being it’ll do.
Just think how much human misery will thereby be alleviated. And alleviating human misery is all that progress, of which I’m a lifelong champion, is about.
Having already founded the Charles Martel Society for Multiculturalism, I’m now incorporating the Joseph Mengele Society for Euthanasia. I hope I can count on my Dutch friends as members.