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Austrian Court Creates Right to Assisted Suicide

Originally published at National Review

A bit ago, Germany’s high court created an absolute right to commit suicide and the concomitant right to have help in making oneself dead.

Now, an Austrian court has said that committing suicide is a right of “self determination” and that obtaining help is part of that right. From the Tribune story:

The court said that the right to self-determination includes the right to a “dignified death,” and also the right of a person who has decided of their own free will to kill himself or herself to get help in doing so from another person.

But it remains unclear what exactly will be allowed in Austria starting in 2022.

I don’t think this was the highest court, so there may be an appeal.

Also, notice the court ruled that the state can attempt to ensure no undo influence.

The court said legislators will have to take measures to prevent abuse and ensure that “the person affected does not take the decision to kill themselves under the influence of third parties.”

Yeah. Right. Good luck with that. Guidelines do not protect against abuse.

More as I know more.

Wesley J. Smith

Chair and Senior Fellow, Center on Human Exceptionalism
Wesley J. Smith is Chair and Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism. Wesley is a contributor to National Review and is the author of 14 books, in recent years focusing on human dignity, liberty, and equality. Wesley has been recognized as one of America’s premier public intellectuals on bioethics by National Journal and has been honored by the Human Life Foundation as a “Great Defender of Life” for his work against suicide and euthanasia. Wesley’s most recent book is Culture of Death: The Age of “Do Harm” Medicine, a warning about the dangers to patients of the modern bioethics movement.