The sorrow and hope of Charlie Gard

This is how health-care systems must work. We cannot pretend that failing to pursue every hypothetical treatment for the would-be benefit of every potential sufferer from every conceivable illness is an intolerable evil. The reason that a socialized system for the provision of medical care is morally preferable to one that treats medicine as if it were a good or service like any other is that it acknowledges this implicitly. Resources go where they will be effective, not where the jingle of coins resounds. This is not to excuse the diabolic practice of euthanasia, which bureaucrats and physicians who do not understand the first principle of their ancient profession are too happy to embrace as an economy throughout Europe. It is simply an acknowledgment of reality.

It’s easy to see why we shy away from this. We are most of us afraid of death because we hear, somewhere, in the back of our hearts, that sinister, falsely authoritative voice of doubt whisper that it is the last thing. But people of faith know that it is not. Rather, it is what St. Paul called “the last enemy”: the ancient foe of the human race over whom Christ triumphed totally and for all time at Calvary. It is a hideous fanged shadow hanging on the walls of our terrestrial cave, the last-ditch effort of our first opponent to frighten us from guessing the truth.

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