"[T]here have been a number of discussions in Parliament in recent years on this subject, and the emergence of this so-called Independent Commission and its report prompts the question “What has changed to make a re-opening of the question necessary?” Paradoxically, the answer seems to be that the only thing that has changed, and that is still changing, is advances in medical science and in palliative care. In other words, changes in exactly the direction which suggests that we do not need a change in the law such as envisaged.Thankfully the General Synod voted overwhelmingly to "affirm the intrinsic value of every human life and express its support for the current law on assisted suicide".
"Law exists so that people may be protected, especially the vulnerable. Law exists to guarantee equality of protection to all.
"What we are faced with here in these proposals from the Commission is a legal outcome in which protection is diminished, not only for vulnerable individuals but also for medical professionals. A point has been made, and it needs to be made again, that it is front-line physicians who are going to find themselves more and more in a deeply uncomfortable – perhaps unsustainable – place in all this.
"The default position on abortion has shifted quite clearly over the past 40 years, and to see the default position shifting on the sanctity of life would be a disaster.
"To say that there are certain conditions in which life is legally declared to be not worth living is a major shift in the moral and spiritual atmosphere in which we live ... [T]o change the law on this subject is, I believe, to change something vital in our sense of the value of life itself."
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