Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Consequences of the Culture of Death

Last Saturday, a young man from Derby, England, was standing at the top of a parking garage threatening to jump. His peers encouraged him to do so, shouting for him to jump and even asking if he could bounce. When he did jump and fell to his death, people gathered around him- to take pictures on their cell phones. (This is from an article in the Daily Mail, but be warned before you click on the link that occasionally some of their advertising is inappropriate. Article)

The obvious question in this is: how can something like this happen? To me, it seems clear that it is simply another symptom of the Culture of Death. I don't think the story I told you about a few days ago is unrelated. If children, unborn or born alive, are disposable, and the elderly are disposable, then why not people with mental illness? If we have embraced death at those stages of life, what is to stop us from embracing it in between? What does it say when someone's death is a form of entertainment? Why, in a culture of death, does it surprise us that someone feels their life has no worth?

Shaun Dykes needed to be told that his life was worth living. He needed to know that others valued his life when he had difficulty valuing it. Instead, he was given nothing positive to turn to in his despair. He could not see that his life was a gift from God. This is a tragic reminder to us that being pro-life isn't only about abortion or end-of-life issues. A Culture of Life celebrates the whole of life and respects its dignity throughout. Let us pray for Shaun and his family, and pray for mercy for those who cheered on during his final moments.

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