I love and respect my doctors and I am generally inclined to follow their advice but I have never and will never cede to them the right to make final binding decisions regarding my health, especially end-of-life decisions.
The vast majority of doctors are good and honorable servants, devoted to the medical profession and some are undoubtedly faithful to the Hippocratic Oath they formerly took at the beginning of their career. The Oath basically says “do not harm” to patients. Yet, history has shown us that there are doctors who represent the extreme opposite of all the good doctors. Two such men are Dr. Josef Mengele or the Third Reich and Dr. Kermit Gosnell who is currently standing trial in Philadelphia for the murder of many children born alive as the result of a botched abortion procedure.
In the current debate over the provisions of Texas Senate Bill 303 it is becoming more and more evident that the supporters of the proposed amendments to the existing law, the Texas Advanced Medical Directives Act, found in Chapter 166.046 of the Health and Safety Code, and the opponents of the proposed amendments are divided into their two camps by the question of rights and whose rights will prevail, the first giving priority to the rights of doctors and the second giving priority to the rights of patients. If I had any doubts about this they were removed yesterday when the Texas Medical Association put the following on their Twitter site:
Born in 1911 in the Bavarian village of Gunzburg, Mengele was the eldest of three sons. He was apparently refined, intelligent and popular and studied philosophy at Munich and medicine at Frankfurt University.
In 1937 he joined the Nazi party, and in 1938 went to the SS. Four years later he was wounded while serving at the Russian front and was pronounced unfit for duty.
It was in 1943, at the age of 32, when he was transferred to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland.
He initially gained notoriety as an SS physician who eagerly supervised the selection of arriving prisoners.
Mengele would determine who would be killed and who would become a forced labourer and worked to death.
He then made the fateful move into “experimentation” – and is believed to be directly responsible for the deaths of thousands of Jews.
While his diaries show how Mengele found plenty of time to pontificate on life, there is no mention of his stomach-churning experiments.
He once injected chemicals into children’s eyeballs in an attempt to change their colour.
He was also hugely fascinated by twins and once sewed Gypsy children together to create Siamese twins.
Notes of his operations were destroyed but it is thought that at least 3,000 twins were subjected to his experiments and thousands more killed.
He once ordered his assistant to round up 14 pairs of Gypsy twins during the night. Mengele placed them on his polished marble dissection table and put them to sleep.
He then proceeded to inject chloroform into their hearts, killing them instantly. Mengele then began dissecting and meticulously noting each and every piece of the twins’ bodies.
Bizarrely, many of the camp survivors recall Mengele as a gentle, affable man who befriended them as children and gave them chocolates.
Since many had immediately been separated from their families upon entering the camp, Mengele became a sort of father figure.
But the children were acutely aware that they could be killed at any time.
He once drew a line on the wall of the children’s block about 5ft 2in from the floor. All those whose heads could not reach were sent to their deaths.
He was also capable of sudden bursts of extreme violence. Author Robert Jay Lifton, in his book The Nazi Doctors, reports how one terrified mother did not want to be separated from her 13-year-old daughter.
She bit and scratched the face of the SS man who tried to force her to her assigned line, so Mengele drew his gun and shot both the woman and the child.
With the comment “away with this s***” he then sent to the gas chambers all the people from her transport who had previously been selected for work.
One survivor also recalled that one block was infected with lice – and Mengele solved the problem by gassing all the 750 women assigned to it.
In 1945, as Hitler’s empire began to crumble and the Soviets advanced, Mengele went on the run.
He escaped the Red Army and, incredibly, was released twice from American detention camps when they failed to realise he was a wanted war criminal.
After four years of hiding on a farm in southern Germany, his wealthy family bought him the help of former Nazis so he could flee to South America.
Details gradually emerged of his horrific regime and he became one of the most wanted Nazi criminals.