The mayor of Antibes Jean Leonetti, co-author of the last two laws on end of life, criticized the proposal submitted Thursday April 8 to Parliament to create a right to euthanasia, a “Major transgression” which according to him deserves the holding of general states.
“The proposed law is a law that deliberately results in death: we are in the process of decriminalizing what legally we call homicide. We are not in a small step forward, we are in a rupture “, analyzes the elected LR and former MP.
The previous laws, that of 2005 which bears his name and that of 2016 Claeys-Leonetti authorizing deep sedation to relieve the patient are “Accompanying laws”. “They advocate three things: non-abandonment, non-suffering, and non-relentless therapy”, he recalls.
“I fear that we are heading towards a major transgression, and above all a break with the possibility of calmly discussing an intimate, painful and complex subject […] and which leads why not to a consensus ”, continues the 72-year-old doctor. “It seems to me rushed to write a text on a subject that no one considers negligible, without first having a real debate with the entire population, and not a poll”.
If this project is adopted, ” it will be the first time in France that we will decide to give death to fragile people who want it and ask for it. It has been done in other democracies but there is still a break in the prohibition to kill which, in my eyes, is not a religious precept ”, he adds.
Jean Leonetti regrets a lack of debate
The rupture would be political, according to Jean Leonetti, because the debate is at its worst, in the midst of the Covid-19 epidemic which precisely highlights the fate of the most fragile people, and at the end of the presidential mandate, without the prior holding of states general provided for by law: “It shocks me that we did not do the preliminary parliamentary mission, nor the essential citizen debate, nor the debate with the ministers who, very hypocritically, do not speak out. What does the government think of this text? “.
“The second change is medical”, he says, and doctors will find themselves in an awkward position, while France especially lacks the means to ensure equal access to palliative care. However, 98% of people are especially afraid of dying alone, the victim of a relentless therapeutic or in suffering. A minority of 1 to 2% asks for the right to die, assures Jean Leonetti, citing the Sicard report of 2012.