Sunday, November 04, 2012

World Medical Association strengthens opposition to capital punishment

Fetus at 8 weeks/Human being

It also reaffirmed previous resolutions that "it is unethical for physicians to participate in capital punishment, in any way, or during any step of the execution process, including its planning and the instruction and/or training of persons to perform executions", and that physicians "will maintain the utmost respect for human life and will not use medical knowledge to violate human rights and civil liberties, even under threat."

Bravo. This is the way it should be.

But it's too bad this respect for human life does not extend to the unborn or potential victims of euthanasia.

Reprieve has launched what it calls a "Pharmaceutical Hippocratic Oath" for drug companies which pledge themselves not to supply lethal drugs for executions. Under the oath, companies pledge that:

"We dedicate our work to developing and distributing pharmaceuticals to the service of humanity; we will practice our profession with conscience and dignity; the right to health of the patient will be our first consideration; we condemn the use of any of our pharmaceuticals in the execution of human beings."

1 US company, Hospira, still supplies a paralyzing agent, pancuronium, which is part of a 3-drug cocktail for executions. Reprieve says that this drug is cause for particular concern, as it renders prisoners unable to signal that they are suffering agonising pain as the final, lethal substance is injected.

Again, absolutely no concern for the unborn who are also unable to signal that they are suffering.

But if a human being has to die in the name of women's empowerment, so what, right?