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    Just seen the result of that case with the woman who has MS and was just wondering what people on here thought about the result?

    should be people have a right to chose how they die?

    In a case where objectively the person has nothing to live for, say they are paraplegic or living with a progressive terminal illness it is difficult not to feel sympathy for their plight, however what about the borderline cases?

    if it is acceptable for a paraplegic to choose to die what about a person confined to a wheel chair? if a really old person wants to die, what about a young person whose girl friend has just dumped him?

    i would say that the criteria would generally be a "sound and informed choice", however is it possible for certain people to make such a choice and be in sound mind? what if a person simply decides he wants to die because it would give his family an easier life? or like the banker who lost everything and jumped from the skyscraper, is his decision to die less sound?

    the problem is soundness of mind isnt based upon the actual choice but the state of being of the individual. So an individual of sound mind can make a totally unreasonable choice, for example there was a case in constitutional law whereby a woman needed a ceacesrean birth, or both she and her child would die, yet refused to be operated upon for no apparant reason. they sectioned her and did it anyway but afterwards the court held that this was unlawful as she had made a choice when of sound mind and they didnt have the right to section her.

    so yes tricky legal questions are raised by this matter, and it is best to divorce the emotionality of extreme cases from the question, such as people who would obviously objectively be better off dead and it is thus their wish.

    but then you have to ask what about the people who feel subjectively they cant go on, but dont know how to kill themselves painlessly? should they be able to avail themselves of assisted suicide?
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    Good on Debbie Purdy, the opposition subscribe to some god awful religious idea that human life is more important than free will. She can now live longer as she no longer has to commit the means herself.

    I think the ban on Euthanasia is one of the greatest scandals of the 21st century
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    Euthanasia is an issue which to be honest I don't really know what I believe. I am torn and I still haven't made my mind up about it.

    On the one side I think that we have to be very careful when it comes to the law. I do think that if assisted suicide is legalised you are exposing a large number of people to the risk of being pressured into it or doing it because they are suffering from depression. If it were to be made legal I think that it would be have to be very tightly controlled as the risk associated with it would be huge. I also do think that human life is something that is very important and the decision to end it isn't something that should be ended lightly, so we should put a lot more focus into supporting people with these sorts of long term progressive illnesses as from my experience the support that they and their families get at the moment is pretty appalling. So legally I am a bit dubious as to whether it could be done in a fair way which didn't create a lot of grey areas, and morally I think that rather than focusing on helping people to die we should be helping them to live and improving the support that we currently have available.

    On the other side I saw my mother (who had MS) deteriorate slowly and painfully throughout my teenage years and my early twenties from an energetic woman to someone who couldn't move her arms or legs until she passed away last October. I saw the impact that this had not just on her but on the rest of my family and the horrible nature of this disease. It isn't something that I would wish on anyone and I struggle with the fact that the law as it is forces people to go through it when they don't want to. There were times when she would say that she wanted to die, sometimes when she was in a low period she would feel like this for a number of months but she always came back out of that frame of mind eventually. I remember a conversation that I had with her about 6 months before she died about euthanasia (not in the sense that either one of us were suggesting it but in response to something that had been on the TV), when I asked her what she felt about the possibility of legalisation she was torn in a similar way to me. She said that while she wouldn't want people to have to go through what she went through when they wanted to die she also felt that there was a risk. She said that there had been numerous times during her progression where she had considered ending it, but looking back at it now even though her quality of life wasn't great there were so many things that she would have missed if she had and that was something that she wouldn't change for the world.

    So that is why i am torn really, I am split between what I believe is legally and morally dodgy ground and my own personal experience and to be honest I just don't know.

    When it comes to this recent news story however I think that it is a good thing and I think that the law should be clarified.
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    Ethically you should. But there are technical difficulties.
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    (Original post by poossum)
    Good on Debbie Purdy, the opposition subscribe to some god awful religious idea that human life is more important than free will. She can now live longer as she no longer has to commit the means herself.

    I think the ban on Euthanasia is one of the greatest scandals of the 21st century

    Couldnt agree more. I cannot stand watching the religious people (yes I am aware thsi is a generalised statement) piously talk about how someone's life is not theirs to take; that god gave them life and 'he' shall decide etc etc.

    To digress, this reminds me of the people who moan about the Iraq war being illegal - but would they fight for this country if terroists took over, or would they HIDE behind our soldiers? ..thought so. Hypocrites.

    Anyway, a major victory for the euthanasia campaign, and the first of many I sincerely hope. We wouldnt let a dog suffer, so why a human.
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    I think yes. In fact I know someone, my Dads best friend, who was paralysed from the neck down in a motorbike accident at 35. He lived for years in care (he was very wealthy as he used to own several nightclubs in London, and could afford good care) before he decided he was too much of a drain on his daughters who were just starting families, he felt he had lived his life and had nothing left he needed to achieve, he flew to Sweden (I think?) where its legal. I think its a personal choice. However I do think individual cases need to be looked at because someone who has mental health issues might not understand what they are doing, but a fully capable person should be able to decide.
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    (Original post by poossum)
    Good on Debbie Purdy, the opposition subscribe to some god awful religious idea that human life is more important than free will. She can now live longer as she no longer has to commit the means herself.

    I think the ban on Euthanasia is one of the greatest scandals of the 21st century
    you see i disagree, not on the religious point because i also beleive in an individuals capacity to choose, i disagree on the practicalities of the situation. how do you answer the question if a person has made a "free will" choice to die? the hugh amount of grey area in this situation and possibility for abuse makes me balk at the prospect of allowing euthanasia
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    (Original post by fran.ha)
    I think yes. In fact I know someone, my Dads best friend, who was paralysed from the neck down in a motorbike accident at 35. He lived for years in care (he was very wealthy as he used to own several nightclubs in London, and could afford good care) before he decided he was too much of a drain on his daughters who were just starting families, he felt he had lived his life and had nothing left he needed to achieve, he flew to Sweden (I think?) where its legal. I think its a personal choice. However I do think individual cases need to be looked at because someone who has mental health issues might not understand what they are doing, but a fully capable person should be able to decide.
    so even a fully healthy individual as well provided they are "capable"?

    should the choice be judged objectively or subjectively?
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    (Original post by randdom)
    Euthanasia is an issue which to be honest I don't really know what I believe. I am torn and I still haven't made my mind up about it.

    On the one side I think that we have to be very careful when it comes to the law. I do think that if assisted suicide is legalised you are exposing a large number of people to the risk of being pressured into it or doing it because they are suffering from depression. If it were to be made legal I think that it would be have to be very tightly controlled as the risk associated with it would be huge. I also do think that human life is something that is very important and the decision to end it isn't something that should be ended lightly, so we should put a lot more focus into supporting people with these sorts of long term progressive illnesses as from my experience the support that they and their families get at the moment is pretty appalling. So legally I am a bit dubious as to whether it could be done in a fair way which didn't create a lot of grey areas, and morally I think that rather than focusing on helping people to die we should be helping them to live and improving the support that we currently have available.

    On the other side I saw my mother (who had MS) deteriorate slowly and painfully throughout my teenage years and my early twenties from an energetic woman to someone who couldn't move her arms or legs until she passed away last October. I saw the impact that this had not just on her but on the rest of my family and the horrible nature of this disease. It isn't something that I would wish on anyone and I struggle with the fact that the law as it is forces people to go through it when they don't want to. There were times when she would say that she wanted to die, sometimes when she was in a low period she would feel like this for a number of months but she always came back out of that frame of mind eventually. I remember a conversation that I had with her about 6 months before she died about euthanasia (not in the sense that either one of us were suggesting it but in response to something that had been on the TV), when I asked her what she felt about the possibility of legalisation she was torn in a similar way to me. She said that while she wouldn't want people to have to go through what she went through when they wanted to die she also felt that there was a risk. She said that there had been numerous times during her progression where she had considered ending it, but looking back at it now even though her quality of life wasn't great there were so many things that she would have missed if she had and that was something that she wouldn't change for the world.

    So that is why i am torn really, I am split between what I believe is legally and morally dodgy ground and my own personal experience and to be honest I just don't know.

    When it comes to this recent news story however I think that it is a good thing and I think that the law should be clarified.
    this is a strong response, and the clarification of the law is indeed a good thing, the question becomes i feel "when is the choice to die justified?" and we must then ask what are the legal principles we would base such an evaluation upon?
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    Morally I agree with euthanasia as people should be capable of dying with dignity. However how do you draw the line of what conditions are acceptable? How do you decide whether someone is of sound mind enough to make the decision? What about someone's quality of life?
    Personally if the gray areas were ironed out and it was made clear then I would support euthanasia because people should be allowed to decide when they die. People who go abroad with someone for assisted suicide I don't think should be at risk of prosecution although the law needs to be clarified...
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    I dont beleive there needs to be ANY justification. Who the hell is anyone else to tell you that YOU HAVE to live? Makes me so angry. I dont want to die yet, im not suicidal either, but if I ever were to be paralysed I'd be flown to sweden or where ever to be 'put down'. Me and my mother have an agreement that we would help each other if ever we couldnt 'help' ourselves. There doesnt need to be a law, the law just needs to turn a blind eye and keeps its bloody nose out.
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    (Original post by fran.ha)
    I think yes. In fact I know someone, my Dads best friend, who was paralysed from the neck down in a motorbike accident at 35. He lived for years in care (he was very wealthy as he used to own several nightclubs in London, and could afford good care) before he decided he was too much of a drain on his daughters who were just starting families, he felt he had lived his life and had nothing left he needed to achieve, he flew to Sweden (I think?) where its legal. I think its a personal choice. However I do think individual cases need to be looked at because someone who has mental health issues might not understand what they are doing, but a fully capable person should be able to decide.
    probs switzerland. not sweden..
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    (Original post by HiBear)
    probs switzerland. not sweden..
    Thanks. I couldn't remember which. But yeah he went to a clinic where they did it. Apparently he got to choose his favourite meal, his favourite film or song. Apparently he got into bed with a nice roast dinner and watched 2001: A Space Odyssey before he took a sip of a drink which put him to sleep. Nice way to go really, despite the circumstances.
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    (Original post by fran.ha)
    Apparently he got into bed with a nice roast dinner and watched 2001: A Space Odyssey which put him to sleep.
    Fixed.
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    (Original post by fran.ha)
    Thanks. I couldn't remember which. But yeah he went to a clinic where they did it. Apparently he got to choose his favourite meal, his favourite film or song. Apparently he got into bed with a nice roast dinner and watched 2001: A Space Odyssey before he took a sip of a drink which put him to sleep. Nice way to go really, despite the circumstances.
    yeah, there was a case here too. a big mediafied case where the patient went to switzerland to die. . .
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    From the BBC's Have Your Say forum:

    The right to live becomes an obligation without a right to die.
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    Yes, I think everyone has the right to die when they like. I don't want someone else telling me when I can and cannot die, how moronic.
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    (Original post by Flying Scotsman)
    Yes, I think everyone has the right to die when they like. I don't want someone else telling me when I can and cannot die, how moronic.
    the law recognises that some people are not in a fit state of mind to make such decisions, if you are legally incapable you dont have the choice to refuse medication never mind the right to die.

    are you saying that every suicidal person should be allowed assistance in death no matter the circumstances? thats an untenable position I'm afraid...
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    In a way i believe that you should be able to make the decision especially if there is no cure and your health is quickly deteriating. Would you allow an animal to suffer pain and cruelty, no they are allowed to be put to rest but when it comes to human suffering things change.

    I had to watch my granny for three years suffer from breast cancer which later spread and developed into brain tumors. Being told three times she was going to die over one summer after she sliped into a comma was soul destroying. Unable to speak, eat and drink; basically this highly dependable women was being kept alive on a morphine pump and tablets. It would have been her wish in the end to go peacefully and quickly to prevent anymore suffering to her and us. But it is never that simple.
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    (Original post by stellatommo20)
    I dont beleive there needs to be ANY justification. Who the hell is anyone else to tell you that YOU HAVE to live? Makes me so angry. I dont want to die yet, im not suicidal either, but if I ever were to be paralysed I'd be flown to sweden or where ever to be 'put down'. Me and my mother have an agreement that we would help each other if ever we couldnt 'help' ourselves. There doesnt need to be a law, the law just needs to turn a blind eye and keeps its bloody nose out.
    you are ignoring the grey area, what if you were "assisted" and "encouraged to die" in less clear cut circumstances? what if you werent paralyzed but wanted to die?

    this isnt about whether you have a right to die, but whether you can get help to do so. killing yourself isnt illegal, but getting someone else to help is for them...
 
 
 
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