The Telegraph reports that P.D. James - a former senior Home Office civil servant, turned crime fiction writer is concerned the assisted suicide 'clarifications' and any future change to law is open to grave abuse.
"We've got to be really careful when we start making it legally possible to end any life. I don't think people who are against legalising euthanasia are any less feeling, they just see that there are great dangers in the state legislating for this, and indeed there are."
Her comments come on the day when the Director of Public Prosecution, Keir Starmer indicated to the press that family members or friends who help a person under 18, or one suffering from a mental illness or learning disability are more likely to be prosecuted, Keir Starmer, Director of Public Prosecutions.
"Would it make a difference if a person was under the age of 18? Does it matter if the person who dies was not suffering from a terminal illness or severe degenerative condition, or if they had a mental illness or learning difficulty?" he wrote. Are any of these factors more worthy of sympathy than a criminal trial?
"If you answer “Yes”, you are exercising your discretion whether to prosecute. I think these factors do make a difference, and I will be setting out exactly how later on today."
The one thing that disturbs me is just how relaxed the Director of Public Prosecution appears in his language, firstly concerning assisted suicide and then about the possible manipulation and killing of people with learning disabilities, mental illness or 'under 18s' by families or relatives. It is the great problem with the moral relativism so endemic in the UK today.
Clearly the man cannot bring himself to say that assisted suicide is a grave and serious crime. Given this, shouldn't he say, quite categorically, 'If you assist in the suicide of someone so vulnerable as someone mentally ill, someone with a learning disability, a teenager or manipulate someone anyone who is impressionable to commit suicide that you will be prosecuted.' But he cannot even bring himself to say that. Highly, highly disturbing. Anyone would have though we were discussing legalising wacky-backy or something. We're not! We're talking about whose lives may be protected by law, and whose lives may not. Who will live and who will die.