For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord.
But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death. Proverbs 8:35-36
There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. Proverbs 14:12 (also Proverbs 16:25)
Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people. Proverbs 14:34
Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,...
...And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Romans 1:22,28
Woe unto him that buildeth his house by unrighteousness, and his chambers by wrong; Jeremiah 22:13a
As reported by Lorenda Reddekopp of CBC News, December 12, 2018 (link inserted by blogger):
The family of Taquisha McKitty will argue in the Ontario Court of Appeal Wednesday that she's still breathing and alive, even though a lower court has declared her dead.The fact that someone in Ms. McKitty's condition can be considered alive in some places and not in others shows how imprecise the definition of death actually is. The definition of death as "brain death" goes back only 50 years; it was devised in order to salve the consciences of doctors who were starting to perform heart transplants, who were removing hearts from donors who were still alive according to the definition then in place. December 4 marked the 50th anniversary of the American Medical Association's adoption of heart transplant guidelines (one year and one day after the world's first heart transplant was performed in South Africa), which stipulated that a person's death had to be declared "irreversible" by at least two doctors not connected with the surgical team before his heart could be transplanted, with the best definition of death being based on "irreversible brain death." I intend to do a more detailed post on this subject next year, God willing.
"We're not convinced that she's dead," said Bishop Wendell Brereton from his church, the Breakthrough Temple in Brampton.
He has visited McKitty in hospital and witnessed her movements.
"Legs, arms. From head to toe she's moving," he said.
"So, it's not a corpse lying there. It's a person."
McKitty was declared dead by doctors more than a year ago after she went into cardiac arrest following a drug overdose and was put on life support.
McKitty's lawyer will argue in appeal court in Toronto that an Ontario Superior Court judge erred in not recognizing McKitty's charter rights, and not taking into account her religious beliefs in a case that could prove precedent-setting.
"Taquisha is alive according to her own religious beliefs," lawyer Hugh Scher writes in a court factum.
He adds that some jurisdictions do take religious beliefs into account before declaring someone dead.
"Taquisha remains alive in Nova Scotia, New York, New Jersey and elsewhere, but according to [Ontario Superior Court] is dead in Ontario."
Erica Baron, the lawyer representing Dr. Omar Hayani, who first declared McKitty dead at Brampton Civic Hospital, argues Scher is misinterpreting Nova Scotia law, and that McKitty would be considered dead everywhere in Canada.
In her legal arguments, Baron writes that because of the family's doubts regarding McKitty's movements, further neurological tests were done.
"These movements are not brain based," she wrote.
"If mechanical ventilation was discontinued, her heart would cease beating very quickly."
Bio-ethicist Kerry Bowman from the University of Toronto raised a number of questions about the issue.
"Who decides whether you're dead or not?" he asked in a phone interview, adding that as a whole, western societies are more focused on brain activity as an indicator of life than eastern societies.
"Can a doctor say, 'You're dead,' irrespective of what your family and your religion believes to be dead?"
He believes the courts need to clearly rule on what constitutes death.
In another Ontario case, the family of an Orthodox Jewish man declared brain dead also disputed the finding and went to the courts.
In that case, though, 25-year-old Shalom Ouanounou's heart later stopped beating and a Jewish doctor declared him dead.
The judge in that case then declared the case moot.
Bowman says one uncomfortable part of this issue that can't be ignored is money and the cost of keeping people on life support indefinitely who show no brain activity.
"I'm not saying we should make resource allocation decisions at the bedside, to say, 'This loved one of yours is not worth money.'"
But Bowman does say the courts may need to decide the line between life and death.
In the McKitty case, the Ontario Court of Appeal may not be the end.
Brereton says the church is determined to have the issue heard by the Supreme Court of Canada if the appeal decision is not in their favour.
I appreciate Mr. Bowman's frankness in mentioning the economic aspect of the issue of euthanasia. With an aging population and a health care system that's becoming increasingly expensive to maintain, economic concerns are becoming increasingly important, and will continue to do so, masquerading as compassion.
Every case is different and should be judged on its own merits, including that of Ms. McKitty. I, of course, know virtually nothing about her case, but I suspect that the kind of church mentioned in the article may have something to do with her case coming before the courts. Breakthrough Temple in Brampton, Ontario is a charismaniac Dominionist church, which seems to lean in the direction of the New Apostolic Reformation. They claim "Kingdom authority" in the here and now, which makes me wonder if they're having trouble accepting that a miraculous healing may not be occurring. Their statement of faith is weak when it comes to the Holy Spirit, which leads me to suspect that Breakthrough Temple is a Oneness Pentecostal church (their statement is so vague that it's hard to tell, which makes me suspicious that they're trying to conceal their true beliefs).