Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #32 Part II: The Right to Die Movement

Listen now: Side 1 | Side 2

In Nazi Germany, the extermination programs which resulted in the horrors of Auschwitz began with the “T-4” euthanasia program. The precedent that opened the door for state-authorized killing and that led to the euthanasia program and the extermination of the Jews and others was the Knauer case. In the Knauer case, Hitler authorized the termination of a seriously deformed infant at the request of its parents. This program examines the issue of physician-assisted suicide and the right-to-die movement against the background of the Nazi euthanasia experience. (The Nazi euthanasia program and the Nazi racial laws were an outgrowth of the international eugenics movement and were strongly influenced by American eugenics thinking and legislation.) In addition to examining the pending legal decisions concerning physician assisted suicide and the views of Dr. Timothy Quill (one of the leading advocates of euthanasia), the broadcast highlights the graduation of physician assisted suicide into the termination of disabled people and the chronically ill and elderly. In particular, the broadcast discusses the precedent established in the Netherlands (which legalized physician-assisted suicide). In that country, all the legal guidelines which physicians were required to observe have become obsolete through systematic violation. The Dutch program, which should inform the American experience in this regard, has gravitated down the “slippery slope” and has become ominously reminiscent of the Third Reich’s T-4 program. (Recorded in March of 1997.)

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