Euthanasia is the "mercy" killing of a human being, whether active or passive and ranging from voluntary to involuntary. In Dylan Walborn's story, Denver Post reporter Kevin Simpson wrote in his own words that the parents of 4,000 Colorado children could face "a choice between prolonging life and ending it." People "passively euthanize" others most commonly by withholding food or water. Those who advocate euthanasia attempt to blur the distinction between food and water, which everyone needs to live, and intense medical treatments such as mechanical replacement of failed vital organs. It is okay to let a dying person die, it is not okay to kill them. Some Denver Post readers, including those who reject absolutes and even Christians with little scriptural understanding, will suppose that a lethal injection would have been even better treatment of Dylan, killing him painlessly and instantly to avoid his weeks of starvation. The British Broadcasting Corporation reports that, "Some (mostly philosophers) go even further and say that active euthanasia is morally better because it can be quicker and cleaner, and it may be less painful for the patient." The BBC also reported on an interview with the French minister of health, who was also a founder of Doctors Without Borders, who admitted to committing active, non-voluntary euthanasia, but this report was not to criticize him, but used to justify Holland's legalization of euthanasia. Killing people who request starvation or lethal injection is called "voluntary euthanasia," (as is now done in Switzerland); killing babies (as is now done in Holland) and others unable to make decisions (like Dylan) is called "non-voluntary;" and killing the weak and vulnerable against their wishes for their good (or sometimes the good of society, duty to die, etc.) is called "involuntary euthanasia." By these popular descriptions, the starvation of Dylan was passive, non-voluntary euthanasia. By God's command, starving Dylan equals intentionally killing an innocent child.
As World War II raged, Germany used some of its dwindling resources to produce a major motion picture, "I Accuse," which premiered in Rome, about a doctor who tried everything to cure his suffering wife, and then, out of the purest love and mercy, he finally killed her. The National Socialists (NAZIs) prioritized survival of the fittest, and became obsessed with a defense of euthanasia as merciful. NAZI obsession with euthanasia does not prove it right or wrong, but shows that the its defenders do not automatically deserved the moral high ground as given them by the media. Rather, the German case shows that grand claims of humanitarian mercy can camouflage hideous deeds. The Germans acted secretly, by their own admission, in an effort to hide the euthanasia from the Church and the Americans, which the Germans believed would oppose the practice. Today, the American Church has crossed the line, and has begun to actively support and participate in euthanasia.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, researchers could access millions of pages of previously unavailable documentation. The following comes from April 3, 1940, when the mayors of Germany met for a conference in Berlin. The mayor of Munich presided. His name was Karl Fiehler. We still have the minutes of this meeting. Fiehler's meeting informed all the mayors present of a plan to empty hospital beds, by killing the patients. The only responsibility of each mayor in all of this was simply to deal with the ashes of the hospital patients. Initially, the plan was to kill the mentally and physically handicapped. Over the next five years, town cemeteries took delivery of tens of thousands of urns. On the volume of urns so delivered, see Dr. Richard SchÃ¤fer's testimony in the Nuremberg Documents, No. 3817. Urns were processed under direction of the mayors. These urns, filled with the cremated remains of sick or disabled German citizens, were stored away from public view.
Quoting from the actual minutes of the meeting:
German conference of mayors in Berlin...
In the many mental institutions in the Reich there are an infinite number of incurably ill patients of all kinds who are completely useless to humanity; in fact, they are nothing but a burden, their care creates endless expense, and there is no possibility that these people will ever become healthy or useful members of human society. They vegetate like animals, and are antisocial people unworthy of living... They only take nourishment away from other, healthy people, and often need two to three times as much care. Other people must be protected from these people.
...we must... eliminate these beings, even if only to better maintain curable patients in mental hospitals...
It is difficult above all because of the church... It is also dangerous because of the Americans, who could enter the war against us for such a reason.
Recalling that these German mayors met on April 3rd, at Denver Bible Church, on April 3, 2005, we remembered the 65th anniversary of this date and vowed to warn others about the process that led Germans by the thousands to slaughter the innocent by the millions. You can listen to that sermon here, which was delivered three days after Terri Schiavo was euthanized.
[Concerning the remains, inform family members that] the urn will be sent to the nearest cemetery office free of charge for temporary storage.
When such urns are sent to the cemetery offices, the cemetery office must keep no files on them.
The practical procedure at the cemetery should occur as follows: One fine day, a package will arrive at the cemetery...
For documentation on the minutes of this mayors meeting, please see Chapter Two of Cleansing the Fatherland by Gotz Aly, et al., from John Hopkins University Press, 1994. The authors claim those minutes referenced are available in the Plauen City Archives, Germany.
God expects the Body of Christ to lead in teaching the public about His prohibition against killing the innocent, and to provide leadership to governing authorities. Yet, our seminaries have become weak regarding the teaching of Scripture and the basics of morality. Those ignorant of history will repeat its failures, and lacking wisdom, average people become cavalier about killing the innocent.
As best we know, the mayors of all the towns in Germany went along with all this, and with much more. And these mayors were not handpicked by the NAZIs. They didn't interview candidates for town mayors and asked them, "Would you mind if eventually, we killed all the handicapped kids in your town?" They didn't do that. Normal people, eager to get ahead in their careers, went along with this. That self interest made them eager to support their government regardless of what it asked of them. The Germans did not handpick hundreds of cemetery directors, and thousands of cemetery workers, they did not handpick all the asylum directors. Back then Germany had a couple hundred asylums for the handicapped and homes for disabled children. Thousands of directors, doctors and nurses knew about the slaughter of their patients. Were they all specially handpicked, with those opposed to euthanasia fired? No! Many of these participants had been in those careers and jobs long before the NAZIs came to power. A book from the 1890s, Quality of Life, convinced Germany's medical community of the benefits of "mercy" killing. The thousands who killed 200,000 vulnerable Arians (Germans) were members in good standing of a humanist medical community which turned its back on God's morality. Out of hundreds of asylum directors, only one resisted. Heinrich Hermann managed the home for "deaf-mutes" near Ravensburg. In fact, we still have a letter Hermann wrote just four months after the mayors meeting. He dated this letter to his boss August 6, 1940. Hermann wrote:
I know the aim of this planned registration... I am simply convinced that the authorities are doing wrong by killing certain patients... by exterminating such a patient, or a member of the family or the asylum who is simply abnormal, we are acting against God's will. That is the reason I cannot go along with this. I am sorry, but we must obey God more than human beings. I am prepared to accept the consequences of my disobedience.Heinrich Hermann
Hermann was rare; a German hero who resisted the euthanasia program, and Denver Bible Church honors him. But virtually all other such German officials simply switched their allegiances, from following a bland bureaucratic evil to a brazen bureaucratic evil, and became willing to kill the innocent. For example, the final note of the April 3rd mayors meeting says:
Questions should be addressed to Herr Deputy Dr. Georg Schlüter at the national association of mayors in Berlin.
Dr. Schlüter headed the association's department for social policy. That is interesting because Shlüter had been the head of Department III, Social Policy, for many years, from long before the NAZIs took power, from back in the days of the democratic Weimar Republic. The NAZIs did not handpick those who slaughtered 200,000 innocent people (in preparation for the holocaust). The pro-euthanasia culture of the day picked them. When the doctors and the politicians began to accept euthanasia, killing innocent people to solve problems, that significantly prepared the way for the German slaughter of the Jews. All the right kinds of people were in place.
The Journal of the American Medical Association, in 1988 published the anonymous report of a physician who gave a lethal injection to a young cancer patient, whom he had just come across during a night shift. Yet without condemnation, the JAMA editors published this murderers report. In May of 1996, the New England Journal of Medicine reported that twenty percent of nurses admit to hastening the deaths of terminal patients, many of these as non-voluntary killings. Thus, many Americans have followed elderly Hollanders who fear being euthanized. In only three years the Dutch slid down the slippery slope from voluntary to non-voluntary euthanasia, when the BBC reported in April 2001: "Netherlands [became] the first country in the world to allow so-called mercy killing," when "the patient must... have given consent," to their Dec. 2004 report in which "the main Dutch doctors' association KNMG urged the Health Ministry to create an independent board to review euthanasia cases for terminally ill people 'with no free will,' including children." In fact, "a hospital in the Netherlands...has already begun carrying out such procedures," and "proposed guidelines for mercy killings of terminally ill newborns..." Of course this was similar to the Denver's Children's Hospital, the Denver Post, and others who have de facto legitimized euthanizing even children. So now, as in Holland, where reportedly many elderly carry cards that say "Don't euthanize me," many Americans are becoming fearful of being euthanized.
America's elite defends two infamous heroes of the pro-choice (abortion and euthanasia) movement, Jack Kevorkian and Margaret Sanger. Yet Sanger, founder and long-time president of Planned Parenthood, wrote in her book Pivot of Civilization (p. 112) regarding "the blind, deaf and muteâ€¦ and epilepticâ€¦ [that] our eyes should be opened to the terrific cost to the community of this Dead weight of human waste." Yet Planned Parenthood still gives out their annual Margaret Sanger Award, even though she also wrote in Woman and the New Race (p. 63), of infanticide that, "The most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it." And Jack Kevorkian, living in prison primarily for committing voluntary euthanasia, also committed involuntary euthanasia as documented in his own handwritten, bedside notes as one young man he killed indicated three times that he wanted to change his mind, and not go through with his own assisted suicide (murder), such that Kevorkian twice stopped the procedure, but when the man a third time changed his mind, Kevorkian proceeded regardless, and committed involuntary euthanasia. The euthanasia movement overlooks such a detail in their praise of Kevorkian, which itself provides evidence of the evil nature and the slippery slope of euthanasia.
On Sunday, Nov. 2, 1997, the New York Times ran a three-page article advocating legalizing the killing of babies, including healthy babies, in early stages of infancy (i.e., after birth), and talk show host Bob Enyart read that article to a live TV audience in 80 cities. While the New York Times later silently removed that article from their print and online archives, it was preserved by many people online, was editorialized against the by the Rocky Mountain News (Dec. 7, 1997, The Road to Infanticide), and here you can read our own unauthorized archive of the Times article. And in a grotesque example of how popular such ideas can become, scientist Sarah Hrdy, studying the Lemurs of Abu (monkeys in India) became convinced of the usefulness of infanticide and wrote in Discover Magazine of all places, on The Evolution of Infanticide that "Infanticide is at one end of the spectrum of parental care." Thus, Denver Bible Church issues a warning to Christians that we must stand resolute against abortion and euthanasia, for this culture of death mocks God and destroys the innocent at our peril.
For more information on Germany's horrible experiment with widespread euthanasia, please read Cleansing the Fatherland by Gotz Aly, et al., published by John Hopkins University Press, 1994; and The German Euthanasia Program, by a former "senior psychiatrist for the New York City Department of Hospitals," Fredrick Werthem.