Death Penalty Order Focuses on Medical “Mis-Ethics”

I received a fascinating press release from a group called “Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty”, obviously an anti-death penalty group based in California. They are pretty worked up about a recent ruling by U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel in that state.

He has issued a ruling that California must either change the drugs they use in executions – or have an anesthesiologist present in the execution chamber to monitor the prisoner.

That all seems rather strange to me, but that’s not the subject of my curiosity.

What intrigues me is that his order has generated a blistering response by some in the medical community, who argue that it would be unethical for a doctor to participate in the execution of a prisoner sentenced to capital punishment.

Dr. Jonathan Groner, a professor at Ohio State College of Medicine, has issued a statement saying that any physician who participated in an execution would be violating the ethical standards of the American Medical Association. The guidelines state that a physician is “a member of a profession dedicated to preserving life…”

Dr. Groner goes on to argue that “physicians are supposed to be healers, not killers….No patient should ever have to receive treatment from a doctor who participates in executions.

That view makes a lot of sense of to me. Regardless of one’s position on the death penalty, the question of requiring doctors to participate in the killing is a separate matter.

And that is where my wonder begins: Why are these folks up in arms about the death penalty – but have no qualms about “doctors” who violate these same ethics by killing preborn children for bags of cash? Why are abortionists afforded professional treatment?

Obviously it is because the ethics of our modern medical profession are sorely compromised by the politics of the day.


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