Spain moves to legalise euthansia. Catholics are horrified.

Spain moves to legalise euthansia. Catholics are horrified. February 12, 2020
Image via YouTube

LAST December, after Spain’s Socialist and left wing parties entered a coalition, Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, above, warned that ‘Spain would cease being Spain’ if Catholicism were to be further sidelined.

Since the death of dictator Franco, a fanatical supporter of the Catholic Church, Spaniards have been abandoning the faith in droves. Today less that 14.4 percent of Spaniards regularly attend mass. In 2010, then Pope Bendict XVI warned of “aggressive anti-clericalism” in the country.

He was particularly miffed that it had introduced gay marriage in 20o5, making Spain then the third country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage, after the Netherlands and Belgium and 17 days ahead of Canada.

In a separate report, LifeSiteNews quoted the cardinal as saying that the coalition will mean not only a decisive political shift, but also an assault on the “meaning of the person and his dignity” that will lead to “abandoning and forgetting God.”

Well, if he was full of trepidation then, he must now be spitting tacks, for yesterday (Tuesday) Spain’s parliament endorsed an effort to legalise euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide.

After early elections twice last year thwarted the Socialist party’s attempts to change the law, parliament voted by 201 votes to 140 in favor of accepting its euthanasia bill for consideration.

It now goes to a parliamentary health committee for discussion and then heads to the Senate before returning to the lower house for a final vote.

There is no fixed timetable for those stages, but Health Minister Salvador Illa said he hoped to see the euthanasia law enacted by June.

That would make Spain just the fourth European Union country  – after Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands – to allow euthanasia, which is when a doctor kills patients at their request. As well as those countries, assisted suicide –where patients administer the lethal drug themselves, under medical supervision – is also permitted in Switzerland and some US states.

Image via YouTube

Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, above, who became the first Spanish Prime Minister to be sworn into office without a Bible or crucifix, urged politicians to move forward quickly.

We know that many people are waiting, that there is no time to lose.

Both euthanasia and doctor-assisted suicide are currently illegal in Spain, and carry prison sentences of up to eight years. Left-wing parties have tried on a dozen occasions since 1997 to pass bills to help facilitate assisted dying.

Last year a 69-year-old Spaniard, Angel Hernandez, was arrested on homicide charges after he helped his terminally ill wife to die.  His arrest reignited a debate on euthanasia.

A survey in 2017 showed 84 percent of Spaniards support euthanasia, and the head of a center-right party said four days after Hernandez’s arrest that it would end its opposition to a euthanasia law.

Naturally, the the issue has met resistance from conservative politicians and the Catholic church.

The Spanish Bishops’ Conference says on its website that euthanasia “is always a kind of murder” and proposes improvements to palliative care. That proposal is backed by the conservative Popular Party which, along with far-right party Vox, are the only opposition in parliament to the Socialist party’s proposal.

The proposed law in Spain would apply to people suffering an incurable condition, with the patient waiting no longer than a month for the procedure after requesting it.

The request triggers a consultative process, with the patient’s doctor required to obtain a second opinion from a colleague outside his team. After two weeks, the patient must repeat the initial request, which is then forwarded to a committee for assessment.

A doctor can administer the dose directly or patients can get a prescription and administer it themselves, either at home or at a public or private medical facility.
Doctors unwilling to be involved in the procedure can opt out as conscientious objectors, but a replacement doctor must be found.

The parliament in neighboring Portugal, where Socialists are also in power, will discuss later this month a similar proposal to allow euthanasia and assisted suicide.


Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Nonreligious
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Ah, Catholics can fork right off. Nobody’s going to force them to undergo euthanasia, they can suffer all they want. For the rest of us, a little bit of dignity in dying would be nice.

  • Robert McLean

    Good news on a couple of fronts, diminishing Catholic inspired nonsense infecting Spain and the personal right to do what the person needs or desires. No dodgy priests or silly old bishops need to be involved and that has to be good.

  • Matt G

    Good. The Catholic Church should be put out of its misery as quickly and humanely as possible.

  • RoverSerton

    What is ethically required for a dog is illegal for a person. Time to make self determination the law of the land.

  • Sassafras

    Yup! My Meme had Alzheimer’s and pulmonary fibrosis, and was going downhill quickly. Thankfully, NC allowed her to have morphine to slow her body down in order to make her die almost painlessly.

  • Michael Neville

    Just another example of how the Roman Catholic Church couldn’t care less about actual people’s wants, needs and desires.

    There are legitimate concerns and questions about euthanasia.but “it makes Baby Jesus cry” is not one of them.

  • Jim Jones

    As well as those countries, assisted suicide – where patients administer the lethal drug themselves, under medical supervision – is also permitted in Switzerland and some US states.

    And Canada.

    Naturally, the the issue has met resistance from conservative politicians and the Catholic church.

    For decades, the RCC and doctors stole babies from poor women who were told they were still-born and then sold them to rich Catholic families. They should be prosecuted for this which will distract them as the laws are being passed.

    Spain’s Stolen Babies: When Nuns Took Babies From Parents

    Throughout much of 20th century Spain, a criminal network of doctors and nuns stole anywhere from 40,000 to 300,000 babies from their mothers at birth, constituting one of the most horrific yet least known events of the Franco dictatorship.

  • RainbowPhoenix

    Until they start acting horrified by their endless enabling of child rapists, anything else is empty.

  • “Legitimate concerns”?

  • The Popular Party also claims that euthanasia is the equivalent of death panels in US, to save monies on public pensions, healthcare, etc and wants palliative care instead. Ignoring the cuts they implemented (not just them) when they were in power some years ago.

    As per abortion, that is also widely supported, you’ve to like how they ignore what people want

  • HematitePersuasion

    Spain was all about the cruel and exclusive agenda of the RCC for centuries. The RCC just has trouble sharing their toys.

  • Raymond Metcalfe

    Yet another country once dominated by the catholic church as taken a step forward.

  • Michael Neville

    There have to be protocols set up so the candidate for euthanasia has made a knowing decision and has not been forced to decide by others. Also how to treat someone in an irreversible coma or otherwise unable to make the decision on their own.

  • Lark62

    It is also called Medical Aid in Dying, which is more accurate than “Assisted Suicide.”

  • Lark62

    Only as humanely as their conduct toward the rest of humanity.

  • Tawreos

    Then they will have to self administer because no one else would be able to give them that horrible of an end.

  • Arthur F. Meincke

    The world’s oldest terrorist organization is the Roman Catholic church.

  • Arthur F. Meincke

    Spain would be better off without the domination of the Roman Catholic church!

  • Your “protocols” will simply result in discrimination against the disabled and mentally ill, “for our own good.”

  • Raging Bee

    The Popular Party also claims that euthanasia is the equivalent of death panels in US…

    They’re saying euthanasia isn’t real?

  • Terry

    Maybe we should euthanize pedophiles!

  • All this common sense and freedom (almost) makes me want to learn Spanish and move there. I guess I’ll just have to wait until the USA catches up with the other secular governments that know what real freedom is and why religion and government are like oil and water – they DO NOT MIX!

  • You get the idea

  • s clark

    pedos want to be youthanised. yeth they are abtholutely youthleth!

  • s clark

    We are told it is not ok to act as god to take a life, but what about acting as god to prolong life????

    currently it is ok for doctors to act as god by prolonging life when nature’s clock has already reached it’s use by date with total disregard for the personal sense of dignity and comfort for the patient dying of say a cruel debilitating excruciatingly painful cancer when they have had enough and just want out. All scientific efforts have failed to find a cure and prayers are being ignored. Their affairs are all in order, they have said their family goodbyes and they just want to go. They may have made a pact of love with their doting life partner, friend or family member to be released humanely with respect and dignity when and if the time comes. We treat our beloved pets with an early release when they are in pain and living becomes a painful torture without breaking the law. But aren’t allowed to extend the same empathy, love , comfort and do the right thing by a much loved human without being slapped in prison and criminalised for caring.
    spanish bishops say ‘euthanasia is a kind of murder’

    I say Catholicism is a kind of murder….it murders the innocence of little children, it murders self enquiry to discover the truth. Catholicism murdered an entire Incan race for it’s lust for gold. Catholicism murdered millions at the spanish inquisition and crusades. Catholicism murdered scientific scholars and setback scientific discovery and human advancement. Catholicism murdered in the name of religion all through the dark ages and now out of false piousness and guilt they are trying to pretend to the world they have something positive to say and should be listened to.

    abdominae abominae ill padre probus rectimus crossus thyselfeth oh goduss on highuss maketh our lyous more pious arh..arh..men.