The young man who hacked 19 people to death at a care home in Japan is exotic of method but modern of purpose.
Crazy or not, his motives sound perfectly sane and rational to anyone inhaling the Zeitgeist of today’s medicine: “My goal is a world in which, in cases where it is difficult for the severely disabled to live at home and be socially active, they can be euthanised…”
Satoshi’s rationale sounds as if it might have been borrowed from some major cultural figures of the past, George Bernard Shaw for one.
Already in 1910 GBS advocated a wholesale cull of the old and disabled. With the prescience one expects from a great writer, he specified gas chambers as the best expedient of getting rid of the people who are “more trouble than they are worth”:
“A part of eugenic politics would finally land us in an extensive use of the lethal chamber. A great many people would have to be put out of existence simply because it wastes other people’s time to look after them.”
What better reason does one need for mass murder in our progressive world? Shaw must have taken his cue from Darwin, the guru of modernity, who advocated euthanasia to accelerate otherwise slow natural selection:
“It is the selection of the slightly better-endowed and the elimination of the slightly less well-endowed individuals, and not the preservation of strongly-marked and rare anomalies, that leads to the advancement of a species.”
Margaret Sanger, the pioneer of birth control, saw not only euthanasia but also infanticide as beneficial: “The most merciful thing that a large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it.”
Our contemporary Peter Singer, bizarrely described by some as a philosopher, asks a rhetorical question: “Why… should the boundary of sacrosanct life match the boundary of our species?”
Of course according to Prof. Singer our sex life shouldn’t ‘match the boundary of our species’ either. He’s a vociferous advocate of heavy petting, as it were – no one can accuse Peter of specism, although perhaps poor Mrs Singer might accuse him of something else.
Milan Kundera doesn’t see much difference between people and animals either: “Dogs do not have many advantages over people, but one of them is extremely important: euthanasia is not forbidden by law in their case; animals have the right to a merciful death.”
Satoshi thus has his finger on the pulse of modernity. The pulse beats universally, even though his method of administering mercy must owe something to the Japanese obsession with knives – where else is self-evisceration seen as the preferable method of ending one’s life?
But one could argue that stabbing old people is more merciful than the practice common in our dear NHS, where those seen as hopelessly ill are simply left to die of starvation, thirst and neglect. This is supposed to be consonant with the doctor’s sacred right to withdraw therapy.
It’s also supposed to be consonant with the Hippocratic oath, whose modern version endorses euthanasia: “If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.”
The hypocritical disclaimers to the Hippocratic oath aside, one can safely say that inside every philosophically modern doctor lives a Dr Kevorkian, or perhaps a Dr Mengele, trying to get out. And modern laws conspire to make sure he does get out.
As seems to be the case with every modern perversion, it’s Benelux that leads the way – they don’t call those countries low for nothing. In Holland, euthanasia is responsible for two per cent of all deaths.
In 1990 alone Dutch doctors killed 20,000 patients without their prior consent. Shortly thereafter euthanasia was legalised, and doctors began to kill in earnest. Moreover, two-thirds of euthanasia cases aren’t even reported, in 20 per cent of the cases the patients don’t ask to die, and in 17 per cent potentially life-saving treatments are available.
With the government’s endorsement, both tacit and explicit, doctors thus play not so much God as Satan. Brainwashed Dutchmen approve, though the old people not so much: many of them are scared of going to hospital because they think the doctors may kill them. They sense unerringly that, when euthanasia becomes legal, before long it’ll become compulsory.
Active euthanasia still isn’t legal in Britain, as it is in Benelux and Switzerland. But one hears complaints all the time that our aging population is putting a great burden on the state’s fragile shoulders. A wholesale cull of the crumblies and hopelessly ill is increasingly broached as a valid solution.
To a godless, philistine society it’s not human life but physical comfort that’s sacred. When the former diminishes the latter, what was unthinkable before becomes desirable now – and pragmatic post-rationalisation is never in short supply.
Satoshi Uematsu will doubtless be sent down for administering euthanasia without proper credentials. But once he’s out, he should come to Europe: there are jobs for men like him.