I subscribe to Plough Magazine because I enjoy the writing and the content and because the essays tend toward things and viewpoints other Christian journals don’t. I hadn’t heard of Canada’s MAID – Medical Assistance in Dying – until a recent issue. My mom was Canadian and moved to the States when she was four years old, and I spent time in the Great White North as a kid, visiting friends and eating lots of Slovak cabbage. I ponder dual citizenship in case I want to fly the coop depending on future politics.
The essay paints a dim picture: most of us would argue for – I would argue for – a humane hastening of death when it is clearly on the horizon. But it seems that Canada is squeezing tighter than I would guess they would, coming very near to shaming people into dying for the sake of themselves, their family, and their insurance policy which Canada pays for. It sounds just like Ford Motors urging against EVs because EVs steal from Ford’s bottom line.
For what it’s worth, to make my position clear, I have no interest in MAID or any other iteration of this kind of policy and plan to live until I am unable to pull one more cc of air into my lungs. It might not be pretty, but so be it.
I would, however, vote Yes for a similar program in the States as I am loath to tell other people what to do. And though I support the idealized philosophy, I know how business works. I refinanced my house at maybe the single day and hour of the lowest interest rate in history. My mortgage company mails and phones me almost daily to tell me about my fantastic fortune. They discovered I have thousands – hundreds of thousands – coming to me in home equity, and they have people sitting at tables RIGHT NOW ready to send me a check. I only have to tell them the amount to write it for.
So, I called them. And I was right. If I take a single dollar from the account, I have to refi the entire thing and my historically low rate goes up to the current number and my mortgage nearly doubles. Do you think they care a whit about my finances? Do you think Canada or United Healthcare or the US Senate cares a whit about your living or dying? This is the danger of letting a business or state control your future. I expect that soon I’ll start getting mail telling me what a putz I am for keeping my low rate when so many of my friends – good people and loving Christians – are struggling to buy a house at current rates. What makes me so special? Why do I deserve such largess?
And also, with a happier tone, I encourage you to subscribe to Plough. It’s important, I think, to support small presses like these that exist to bring other viewpoints.
To read the article, go here.
My letter. Which won’t make much sense without reading the essay. I post it here exactly as it is shown in the publication.
Years ago – decades ago – I read something Francis Schaeffer wrote regarding the then-new tussle over abortion on demand. He feared that if abortion were available as a simple option, a yes or no, and if the state blessed such a decision, we weren’t far from babies, medicine, and life itself being a state commodity, handed out as a benefit to good citizens. He saw this as a harbinger of a time when individuals will have no say about desires or rights but will be chastised by those inconvenienced by a child or of the cost of saving a life, chastised for stealing what could benefit in a different statistical bracket. I wonder if his fears are sitting on our doorstep? I’ve had an item on my to-do list for a couple of years now: Complete Canadian Citizenship Paperwork? I’m glad I saw this essay and will want to give it more thought before checking this off.
The Official Website for MAID
Wiki page for Euthanasia in Canada here.
MAID forum in the NYT. (With Paywall.)
MAID and the mentally ill in the BBC.
Thanks so much for reading. Can you think of someone who would like the post? Please mail it to them or share it with your favorite social media using one of the icons below. And won’t you follow me? You can do so in the sidebar. Thanks again and feel free to comment!