NZ Parliament turns democracy on its head

culture of life

I am writing to congratulate Members of Parliament who bravely defended the God-given right to life of every member of our community and voted against the End of Life Choice bill (EOLCB).

By voting in favour of this bill at the second reading, Parliament has abandoned its commitment to upholding a culture of life and its sacred duty to legislate for the protection of the lives of every human being from conception to natural death and not to preside over our destruction.

It is not the role of Parliament to decide who shall live and who can be killed.

Members who voted in favour of this bill at the second reading, have also put the democratic process of law in New Zealand in serious jeopardy.

In ignoring the overwhelming rejection of euthanasia, and this bill, by  91.8 per cent of the 39,159 written submissions and the 85 per cent rejection of the 3,600 oral submissions heard by the Select Committee, those politicians who voted in favour of the second reading have thumbed their noses at the very process they take an oath to uphold.

In reporting the bill back to Parliament, the Committee chairman advised that the Committee was unable to agree that the Bill should be passed, yet a majority of our elected representatives thought their conscience took priority over due parliamentary process!

The bill is also strongly opposed by the New Zealand Medical Association, by disability groups and Aged Concern.

I am disappointed that Parliament has embraced a culture of death by voting in favour of the EOLCB, which if passed at its third reading will allow doctors to kill their patients or assist in their suicide.

This is a violation of the sanctity of life ethic and of the prohibition of the taking of the life of an innocent human being, the foundation of the law and of medicine, which we change at our peril.

That Parliament has decided at this stage that some lives not worthy of life is a tragic moment and a day of shame in the history of our Parliament and country.

It has placed in jeopardy the lives of some of our most vulnerable, the aged, the disabled and the seriously ill.

Right to Life now earnestly requests that Parliament defeats this bill at its third reading and ensures that every New Zealander has access to death with dignity with our world-class palliative care by ensuring that it is fully funded and accessible.

Parliament should also commit itself to implement the government’s Suicide Prevention Strategy which aims to reduce our appalling suicide rate.

  • Ken Orr is the Spokesman for Right to Life.
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