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  #1  
Old 12-02-2008, 03:08 PM
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Grand Duke Henri Refuses to Sign Euthanasia Law: December 2008

The Grand-Duke is rumoured to follow in his uncle's footsteps. Apparently he will refuse to sign the law which will legalize euthanasia in Luxembourg.
Anyone else see a flashback to King Baudouin?
Article in Dutch (vrt)
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Old 12-02-2008, 03:24 PM
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I have always associated King Baudouin with being very faithful to the Catholic religion. Is the Grand Duke as devout (I'm not saying this in a rude, or criticizing manner)? I have always thought that Baudouin and Fabiola's close religion to the church was a beautiful thing.
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Old 12-02-2008, 05:21 PM
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I have to say I admire the Grand Duke for voting against something he thinks is wrong. Nowadays people are pressured into doing things that are wrong. Good for the Grand Duke to stand up for what he believes in!
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Old 12-02-2008, 05:57 PM
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He accepted his first grand-child Gabriel son of Louis , who was then only 19 years old..
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Old 12-02-2008, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyLeana View Post
The Grand-Duke is rumoured to follow in his uncle's footsteps. Apparently he will refuse to sign the law which will legalize euthanasia in Luxembourg.
Anyone else see a flashback to King Baudouin?
Article in Dutch (vrt)
I don't understand..."euthanasia" as in aided suicide ( a la Dr. Kevorkian) or does it mean abortion?
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Old 12-02-2008, 06:23 PM
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Sad , that this happen just before the wedding of Marie-Astrid's girl on this saturday!
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:00 PM
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I don't understand..."euthanasia" as in aided suicide ( a la Dr. Kevorkian) or does it mean abortion?
Euthenasia as in, people who have a terminal disease and who do not want to suffer any longer and end their lives, with the help of a doctor.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:06 PM
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Sad , that this happen just before the wedding of Marie-Astrid's girl on this saturday!
Why those two things have common with each other?
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:25 PM
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I think maria-olivia means it is sad for this to be overshadowing the wedding
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:28 PM
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From Reuters:

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Luxembourg to strip Duke of powers over euthanasia

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) - Luxembourg's government plans to strip Grand Duke Henri's power to sanction laws after he signaled he would not sign a bill legalizing euthanasia.
Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, who rushed back from an economic summit in Brussels, told a news conference on Tuesday that his government would seek a rewording of the constitution.
Read the entire article here.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:46 PM
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an article of spanish newspaper el mundo:
Luxemburgo reducirá los poderes de su soberano tras el veto a la ley de eutanasia | elmundo.es

i understand the grand duke. however, the public uproar seems huge - i think he should have done something similar to king badouin and let the parliament go ahead with the law without his consent rather than publically oposing it. i hope the prime ministers rethinks the reduction of the grand duke's power.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by carlota View Post
an article of spanish newspaper el mundo:
Luxemburgo reducirá los poderes de su soberano tras el veto a la ley de eutanasia | elmundo.es

i understand the grand duke. however, the public uproar seems huge - i think he should have done something similar to king badouin and let the parliament go ahead with the law without his consent rather than publically oposing it. i hope the prime ministers rethinks the reduction of the grand duke's power.
I agree with you, Carlota. He should follow in King Badouin's footsteps. It would be a very sad thing to have his power reduced.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:50 PM
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Well, I think it is rather irresponsible of the Grand Duke. If he does not want to sign a law he should abdicate in favour of his son, if he does not want to abdicate he should sign the law. He can't have it both ways and he is a constitutional monarch after all! Another thing is that king Baudouin reigned for 40 years or so when he was in a strong enough position to refuse to sign, while the grand duke is just getting started and doesn't has a position as respected as his uncle yet (and probably he never will, as king Baudouin was an exceptional monarch).
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:31 PM
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WOW... I could not have imagined high dramas in a quiet place such as Luxembourg. Euthanasia is rather controversial issue. Thus, I fully understand Grand Duke Henri's unwillingness to sign the law.
Grand Duke Henri should abdicate ... for ever or a certain period of time ?
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:41 PM
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I think to abdicate for a certain period was only possible in Belgium, and even there as an exception. It has never been tried anywhere else and I find the whole thing of abdicating for a day rather odd. You either abdicate or you don't. If GD Henri's conscience can not be unified with his role as constitutional monarch he should abdicate for good and leave his son to it. If he starts abdicating now for a day he might start the jojo effect; abdicating when the Lux. parlament want to pass other ethical laws in the future like gay marriage, a more liberal abortion law etc. etc. for example. Apart from that, the GD seems to want to make a firm point against the law, well, adbicating for a day and have somebody else sign a law, after which you continue to act as if nothing happened is not really a firm stand. It is rather hypocritical as the law that was passed still is signed in the GD's name.

Of course it is understandable that the Grand Duke has difficulties with this law, as many people have. But his personal point-of-view should not get in the way of his constitutional duty.
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Old 12-02-2008, 08:50 PM
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I see. Given your opinion, I think that it would be better for Grand Duke Henri to sign the law. Grand Duke Guillaume is very young to assume the burden of ruling the country.
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:38 PM
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Of course it is understandable that the Grand Duke has difficulties with this law, as many people have. But his personal point-of-view should not get in the way of his constitutional duty.
I completely agree with you, Marengo. Personal points of view and constitutional duty are not always going to match up. I imagine that it would be difficult for him to do this personally, but it sounds like the best thing for his people would be for him to sign the law.
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Old 12-02-2008, 11:31 PM
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I think to abdicate for a certain period was only possible in Belgium, and even there as an exception. It has never been tried anywhere else and I find the whole thing of abdicating for a day rather odd. You either abdicate or you don't. If GD Henri's conscience can not be unified with his role as constitutional monarch he should abdicate for good and leave his son to it. If he starts abdicating now for a day he might start the jojo effect; abdicating when the Lux. parlament want to pass other ethical laws in the future like gay marriage, a more liberal abortion law etc. etc. for example. Apart from that, the GD seems to want to make a firm point against the law, well, adbicating for a day and have somebody else sign a law, after which you continue to act as if nothing happened is not really a firm stand. It is rather hypocritical as the law that was passed still is signed in the GD's name.

Of course it is understandable that the Grand Duke has difficulties with this law, as many people have. But his personal point-of-view should not get in the way of his constitutional duty.
If the regent just rubber stamp whatever law is presented then what is the purpose of having him (her) involved? If that is the case his signature means absolutely nothing. I applaud The Grand Duke to object to this law. Perhaps people will have a chance to reflect on the impact this law will have on particularly the elderly. ...Why hanging around when you are old and "useless" when you can end it quickly before the inheritance has been used up...
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:59 AM
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Firstly, euthanasia is only used in cases where a patient is terminally ill. I know that in Belgium, for instance, you need to go through a lot of paperwork before you can have euthanasia. And no, people around a patient are not allowed to ask for this in the place of someone who is not capable of asking it themselves, except when the patient has already expressed the desire for euthanasia when they were still capable of doing this. It really isn't a way to get rid of old and "useless" people, but it is a way to help people die with dignity, in their chosen condition, at teir chosen time, at their chosen place. And it is the choice of the patients themselves.

Secondly, the whole point of a constitutional monarch is that he accepts laws which are voted by a majority in parliament. Just like his uncle Baudouin, the Grand-Duke must accept that there is a difference between the monarch and the private person. As a private person, he is entitled to whatever opinion he has on the matter. But as a monarch, it is his duty to accept the decisions of his government/parliament.
I think he could try to adress Parliament with his concerns about the law, and maybe try to convince the MP's to vote against the law. But he cannot flatout refuse to sign the bill when it has been passed by the majority. Luxembourg is a democratic country, and if a majority of MP's accepted the law, the Grand Duke has to accept it as well. That's the principle of democracy.

Also, please remember that most European Heads of State (monarchs or presidents) do not have the same kind of power as the President of the USA. Most of them have a more symbolical function, and the actual power of government lies with the Prime Ministers, whereas the President of the USA is not only head of state, but, if I'm not mistaken, also Head of Government.
And those Heads of State which do have more governmental power, are wary of using it, because of the democracy principle.
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Old 12-03-2008, 02:49 AM
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The Grand Duke would be excommunicated from the Catholic Church if he signed the document and he made a choice to prevent that from happening. As a Roman Catholic he CAN NOT sign it, even if he wanted to without risking the Pope telling him he can not receive sacraments any longer (which is what excommunication is). It's why his Uncle abdicated for a day. He's between a rock and a hard place here. It's his faith or a rubber stamp which apparently means nothing anyway. Easy choice, in my opinion. If Luxembourg wants a Catholic monarch, they had to have understood that would be the decision. It's not like the Church has changed their opinion on this type of issue from when his Uncle abdicated.
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