I’ve blogged about having a good death before but I’m not sure I’ve ever really explicitly stated my views on Euthanasia.
Seems like a good time to make some things explicit.
I support the legalisation of euthanasia.
Actively and fully support.
How could I do anything else? In my world view, a painless death is something that everybody has the right to. That part of the conversation is something that I can’t even understand differing viewpoints about. The regulation of medically assisted death is something that get trickier and the ethical implications of actively assisting someone’s death is clearly a very individual matter.
Individual healthcare professionals make choices everyday about what they, as people, are happy to do on a professional basis. It’s part of what informs your practice and the area that you choose to work in. I would have no problem assisting with abortions as part of my role as a nurse, I also think I would have no problem in being part of someone’s death in a more active way than providing palliative care if it were legal and safeguarded.
That’s me though, those are my beliefs and it would be my choice to be part of those care provisions.
I would never dream of suggesting that euthanasia is something that Doctors, Nurses and other healthcare professionals should be obliged to assist with. I just really, absolutely, passionately believe that it’s a choice that we, as humans, should be able to offer to those who seek it. Whatever you personally feel about the assisted suicide and euthanasia debate, what right do you have to impose a life sentence on another person? Isn’t it the most personal of choices? The most basic of rights? I think so.
As an able-bodied individual, I could actively choose to kill myself at any time. I don’t have a reason to and, I think that if I was considering it, it would be pretty easy to identify it as an indicator of a mental health issue rather than a sensible choice. As someone with full capacity if I chose to end my life, it would be something I didn’t need assistance with.
Tony Nicklinson is a man with full capacity.
A funny, intelligent, articulate man with full capacity.
A funny, intelligent, articulate man with full capacity, a family who support him in his choices and a horrific condition which is the very reason that he wishes to die and also cannot end his life himself.
He also happens to be an atheist so people like the Right Rev George Pitcher can take his ‘greater good’ blather and stuff it.
I support Tony in his fight in the High Court, it’s time to stop denying people their basic human rights under the guise of ‘slippery slopes’ and the spectre of Angels of death. Harold Shipman got away with murder for years with the law as it currently stands, what possible harm would more legislation, monitoring and safeguarding bodies do?
I’m always interested in conversation and differences in opinion but I think that this topic is one of the areas where I become an immovable object.
Good luck Tony.