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Ethical medicine?

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 Contents - Sep 2005AD2000 September 2005 - Buy a copy now
Editorial: Support the 2005 Fighting Fund! - Peter Westmore
Events: Sydney to host World Youth Day 2008 - AD2000 REPORT
News: The Chuch Around the World
Canadian Bishops' cave-in to 'renegade Catholicism' under fire
Priesthood: America's 'vocation rich' dioceses: latest success stories analysed - AD2000 Report
Can reverence at Mass make a comeback? - Michael Ryan
Interview: Benedict XVI and the power of the Eucharist - Fr John Corapi
Education: Catholic schools of the future - Br John Moylan CFC
Cinema: The Church under Nazism: a sensitive film portrayal in 'The Ninth Day' - Michael E. Daniel (reviewer)
BOOKS: The Myth of Hitler's Pope: How Pope Pius XII Rescued Jews from the Nazis - Thomas E. Woods Jr (reviewer)
A religious response to evil ideologies - John Rego
Letters: Liturgy - John Daly
Letters: Liberal manifesto - Dr Peter Gilet
Letters: Fatima and Benedict XVI - Paul MacLeod
Letters: Society of St Pius X - Fr Kevin Robinson
Events: C.S. Lewis Seminar - Sat 17 Sept 2005 2pm-9pm
Letters: Ethical medicine? - Dr A.W. Hartwig
Letters: Latin Mass - Richard Congram
Letters: Simple Catechisms - Rosanna Sherman
Letters: Gnosticism
Letters: Good reading - E. Pickering
Books: GOING AGAINST THE STREAM: Ethical Aspects of Ageing and Care, by Peter Jeffery - Kerrie Allen (reviewer)
Books: THE ART OF GIVING by Francine Black - Kerrie Allen (reviewer)
Books: THE PATH OF LIFE: Benedictine Spirituality for Monks and Lay People - Gabrielle Walsh (reviewer)
Books: STAIRWAY TO THE UPPER ROOM: Daily Meditations on the Gospel Readings - Michael Gilchrist (reviewer)
Books: The Holy Shroud, by Antonio Cassanelli - Gabrielle Walsh (reviewer)
Books: More good reading from AD Books
Reflection: Benedict XVI: how to make the new evangelisation more effective - Fr Dennis Byrnes PP

Tim Coyle's letter (August AD2000) shows clearly how far some of the medical profession have departed from the Hippocratic Oath. However most medicos - even professors of gynaecology who carry out late term abortions - still claim to practise ethical medicine.

It is in examining this claim that one can see how this is consistent. Even abortionists know and admit their actions destroy human life - life with potential, not potential life. But if our actions are determined "good" by the result, by an increase in the happiness of a sentient life, then the ending of a non-sentient life is an acceptable price.

So abortion and the use of embryonic stem cells is justified, at least on such philosophical grounds. To admit that in either situation harm is inherent is to destroy the justification of that procedure.

One needs little imagination to understand how, especially in today's litigious society, even a suggestion that action undertaken to increase "happiness", but found to increase misery, challenges both the philosophy and the lifestyle of the perpetrator.

To suggest that abortion, or long term use of the contraceptive pill, might even be a factor in a subsequent breast cancer, raises possible sequelae too dreadful to allow even the thought. "Science" has never been impersonal. Few scientists have been known to make discoveries inimical to their favourite theories.

Auchenflower, Qld

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Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 18 No 8 (September 2005), p. 16

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