ON-Lion Letter
When his teenage son Christopher, brain-damaged in an auto accident, developed a 106-degree fever following weeks of unconsciousness, John Campbell asked the attending physician for help.  The doctor refused.  Why bother?  The boy’s life was effectively over.  Campbell refused to accept this verdict.  He demanded treatment and threatened legal action.  The doctor finally relented.  With treatment, Christopher’s temperature subsided almost immediately.  Soon afterward, he regained consciousness and was learning to walk again.

This story is one of many that Wesley J. Smith recounts in his newly updated book, Culture of Death:  The Age of "Do Harm" Medicine, forthcoming from Encounter Books.  Going behind the scenes of our current health-care system, Smith’s critique of the modern bioethics movement chronicles how threats to the equality of human life have accelerated in recent years.  He documents instances of doctors withdrawing desired care based on futile care theory rather than providing it as required by the Hippocratic Oath, and he highlights the problematic influence of bioethicists on public policy.  In the pages of Culture of Death, Smith examines the “new thanatology” crisis in medical ethics, arguing persuasively and passionately in favor of the dignity of human life.

Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism, and he serves as a consultant to the Patients Rights Council.  In 2004, he was recognized as one of the nation’s premier expert thinkers in bioengineering by the National Journal, and he received the Legatus Cardinal John J. O’Connor Award in 2014 for this work against assisted suicide and euthanasia.  His Human Exceptionalism blog, hosted by National Review, is a leading source of information dealing with human life and dignity. 

Encounter Books is an activity of Encounter for Culture and Education, a nonprofit group that is substantially supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee.

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