On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Washington Post Magazine attacked conservative pro-life values on another front - by profiling the new "public face of American assisted suicide," Lawrence Egbert.
On January 22, the Washington Post Magazine's Manuel Roig-Franzia wrote a long profile of Lawrence Egbert, the former director of the Final Exit Network, who by his own admission has been present at 100 peoples' suicides, and "was responsible for signing off on all suicides" for the Final Exit Network.
Roig-Franzia began his piece by examining Egbert's suicide apparatus - while describing Egbert as a normal individual who was "slightly built, genial and energetic retired anesthesiologist with a snowy goatee" and "an 84-year-old doctor, who formerly served as a campus Unitarian Universalist Minister and has taught as an assistant visiting professor at Johns Hopkins University."
Roig-Franzia highlighted the suffering of some the people Egbert helped to commit suicide, noting of one victim that the "gum tissue deteriorated, exposing sharp bones that sliced his tongue; a hole the size of a quarter formed under his chin." Roig-Franzia wrote of another person Egbert killed: "Eating became an exercise in choking and spitting." However, others who qualified for death in Egbert's eyes were merely chronically depressed.
The profile highlighted Egbert's apparent self-doubt about his vocation, declaring that his "zeal is tempered by self doubt." Egbert did nothing to assuage the unease he created, noting "I could be part of a slippery slope to us becoming like Nazis - the Final Exit Network, and me as an individual." Despite Egbert's seeming unease about his work, the piece also noted two instances where Egbert screamed at opponents of his work.
Ironically, the piece ended with the admission that Egbert wants to choose a natural death for himself: "He hopes his body can be an example of a human being who died "a natural death," a death without extended suffering. A death without a hood."
Like his predecessor Dr. Kevorkian, Egbert refuses to choose the same death he "assists" others in procuring.
Roig-Franzia's profile did not spare readers the macabre details of assisted suicide, quoting Egbert: "In the final seconds before his patients lose consciousness and die, the words they utter sound like Donald Duck." When Roig-Franzia told Egbert that the hoods used to commit suicide made him "uncomfortable," Egbert responded: "I hope so."
Roig-Franzia acknowledged that assisted suicide was shrouded in controversy. His piece briefly touched on Egbert's legal troubles. Egbert was acquitted in one of his legal cases - but faces several other legal challenges. The piece talked about a "grieving but satisfied family member" of one of the men he killed, although it conceded that "Egbert began accumulating family members who felt aggrieved."
The piece mentioned Egbert's liberalism, noting that his wife was an anti-war activist who had been arrested more than 200 times. But the Post didn't mention that Egbert is on the board of the Maryland ACLU, which received $785,500 from liberal bankroller George Soros from 2000-2009.
Bizarre fascination with death - at both the beginning and end of life - is a hallmark of the left. George Soros' mother was part of the Hemlock Society - and Soros offered to help her commit suicide. Soros boasted about his funding of "The Project on Death in America" in his book "The Philanthropy of George Soros," declaring: "The Project on Death in America was perhaps our most successful domestic program."
Despite Soros' efforts, however, assisted suicide is only legal in a few states. By raising the issue of assisted suicide by profiling one of its foremost practitioners, the Washington Post Magazine seems to be trying to spark debate over whether or not to decriminalize the "right to die."
The piece, not coincidentally, was timed with the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and published a day before the March for Life. By profiling the lifestyle of the new "public face of American assisted suicide" on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Washington Post Magazine exhibited a bizarre fascination with death - and could not have chosen a more callous time to show it.