Before I re-entered the full-time preaching ministry in October 2012, I was deeply engaged in thinking, reading, and writing about bioethics. For several years I had been living with one foot in the local church—preaching and pastoring—and the other foot in the Christian academy—pursuing my Master of Divinity and working for the seminary at which I was studying.
My seminary studies introduced me to bioethics and also spurred my passion for exploring it theologically. I delivered a paper on nanotechnology, wrote another on cognitive enhancement, became a member of The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity, and attended their annual conferences.
When an idea or concept needs a push in popular culture, Hollywood often makes a movie about it. With the power of emotional drama and a film score designed to tug at the heart, Hollywood has the power to advance ideas that we would otherwise reject on moral grounds. Its most recent attempt uses the book-to-movie love story Me Before You to create sympathy for and acceptance of euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide (PAS).
Ten years ago Terri Schiavo, a severely disabled woman living in Florida, was starved to death—US courts upheld her husband’s decision that, in effect, Terri wouldn’t want to live this way, and so her life supports were removed. Many empathized with the court’s decision, stating that Terri was not mentally capable of expressing her wishes. As I sat in my wheelchair outside the hospice facility where Terri was dying, I knew it was a watershed moment that would jeopardize the lives of all Americans with disabilities.
Posts of this forum are reviewed by CBHD staff and an editorial committee, however, the views expressed herein are the author’s and not necessarily endorsed by The Center for Bioethics & Human Dignity or Trinity International University.