Germany: Federal Administrative Court declares euthanasia legal in “extreme and exceptional cases”

Bad MedicineThe creeping progress of the Culture of Death has made an important leap forward in Germany, where the Bundesverwaltungsgericht (BVerwG, Federal Administrative Court) issued a decision that declares euthanasia to be legal in “extreme and exceptional cases”, without defining them. This opens the door to a new slippery slope, at the bottom of which one surely will discover that every case is somehow “extreme” and “exceptional”.
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ECtHR: six judges demand clear statement that surrogacy is a human rights abuse

_77064408_babyWhile yesterday’s ECtHR decision on the case of Paradiso and Campanelli v. Italy certainly is a positive development in that it corrects one (alas, only one of many!) of the Court’s most grotesque misjudgments of recent memory, it still is a weak decision: one gets the impression that the Court is simply trying to silently creep away from its grave responsibility for having accepted, or even promoted, the truly abominable practice of surrogacy, through which not only human gametes, but even full-grown human beings are turned into tradeable commodities. The Grand Chamber thus frames the matter in a way as if the all-decisive question were it were the “margin of discretion” that Italy and other countries enjoy in prohibiting surrogacy and enforcing such exhibition: and – surprise, surprise! – it has discovered that that margin is greater than the judges of the Second Chamber had believed it was.

Will this really suffice to restore the Court’s credibility, which among those who have a serious-minded outlook on human rights is below zero?

Even worse, there is still a number of judges in this wretched Court (six of them within the Grand Chamber that decided the case, and an unknown number outside it, who, if they had been part of that body, might have supported the views expressed in the dissenting opinion submitted by those six) who still think they can continue in the old way, i.e. pretending not to deal with the issue of surrogacy as such, but de facto supporting and promoting it.

But there also is a silver lining: four of the 11 judges  who voted against finding a violation – De Gaetano, Pinto de Albuquerque, Wojtyczek and Dedovhave written a concurring opinion that is truly brilliant. Continue reading

Surrogacy and child trafficking: The ECtHR corrects itself…

European court of human rightsOne of the most appalling miscarriages of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), a Chamber Judgment through which the Court’s Second Chamber would de facto have turned surrogacy and illegal child trafficking into a “human right” has fortunately been overturned: a Grand Chamber of the Court that has reviewed the case Paradiso and Campanelli v. Italy today found that – contrary to the Chamber’s assessment one year ago –  the decision of Italian authorities to withdraw from the custody of an Italian couple a child that was not biologically related to either of them, but which they had bought from a Russian “reproduction clinic” for the price of 45.000 Euro, did not violate anyone’s “human rights”. Continue reading

The European Human Rights Court once again pushes for a “Right to a Child”

pic-7The notoriously spun-out-of-control European Human Rights Court has yet again issued an astonishing judgment in which it pushes forward, in incremental steps, towards the creation of a “right to a child”.

In the case of A.H. and others v. Russia the Court had to deal with the claims of a group of American applicants whose procedures to adopt children in Russia had come to an abrupt end when the Russian Federation – reacting to the fact that the US now allow same-sex couples to adopt children – suddenly adopted a new law that barred Americans from adopting Russian children. The Court concluded that this abrupt end of the adoption proceedings, which had already reached a fairly advanced stage, constituted a breach of Art. 14 in conjunction with Art. 8 of the European Human Rights Convention, i.e. a “discrimination with regard to the right to respect of the private and family lives” of the applicants.

This finding implies that there is a “Right to Adopt a Child” enshrined somewhere in the Convention, which is of course wrong. Continue reading

ECtHR Grand Chamber to issue revised judgment on surrogacy case

babies-for-saleThe European Court of Human Rights will be delivering a Grand Chamber judgment in the case of Paradiso and Campanelli v. Italy (application no. 25358/12) at a public hearing on 24 January 2017.

The Chamber decision, whose cancellation and referral to the Grand Chamber was granted following a request by the Italian government, is arguably one of the most glaringly perverse decisions ever delivered by the Court, in whose history there certainly is no shortage of bizarre activist decisions with no basis in the law. Continue reading

Dutch government proposes notorious perverter of human rights for appointment as ECtHR judge

rick-lawson-lrThe Governments of the Netherlands and Georgia have each submitted to the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) lists with three proposals for their respective ECtR Judges. The Government of Hungary is due to do the same in the coming days. Then it will be for PACE to pick one candidate from each of the lists.

While we will not comment on the qualities of the other contenders, we would note that one of the candidates proposed by the Dutch Government, Professor Rick Lawson of Leiden University, has an egregious record of contributing to the ideologically biased intentional misinterpretation of human rights. Continue reading

ECtHR: divorce is not a “human right”. For once, a judgment that strengthens marriage and the family…

It is rare for the ECtHR, otherwise reputed for its judicial activism, to resist the temptation of de-constructing fundamental institutions such as marriage and family. But today it has happened: in the case of Babiarz v. Poland (application no. 1955/10), the Court has ruled that Articles 8 and 12 of the European Convention on Human Rights must not be construed as containing a right for the applicant to be divorced from his wife and married to another woman (with whom he already has a child) if his wife does not consent to, and if her behaviour does not justify, a divorce. In simpler words: there is no “right to divorce”. Continue reading