Musings —06.23.2012 12:00 AM—
VANCOUVER – Cementing its reputation as the place where wild-eyed legal decisions are given the fullest possible expression, a British Columbia court last week decided to turn Canadian law on its head.
Matters of life and death, too.
As you may have heard, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Lynn Smith ruled laws prohibiting assisted suicide were “discriminatory,” and gave an ailing B.C. woman the green light to kill herself with the help of her doctors.
Everyone else looking to kill themselves, however, will have to wait a year. Smith decided to give Parliament
12 months to get its laws in congruence with, you know, her view of things.
A 64-year-old Okanagan Valley resident, Gloria Taylor, suffering from ALS, was given a “constitutional exemption” from the law, which came as a surprise to those of us who laboured under the view that the Constitution did not permit “exemptions.”
Getting in on the polling business, the B.C. judge proclaimed there existed “a strong societal consensus about the extremely high value of human life, (but) public opinion is divided regarding physician-assisted death.”
Actually, it isn’t. Surveys, such as they are, tell us Canadians overwhelmingly favour “assisted suicide” — which is The Mother of All Oxymorons, if you ask me — and, based on how leading Ottawa journalists (Andrew Coyne, Paul Wells, et al.) recently mocked the fate of Jun Lin, the alleged victim of Luka Magnotta, I wouldn’t necessarily agree we place “extremely high value on human life,” either.