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The right to die


 

Conservative MP Steven Fletcher says Francine Lalonde’s bill on euthanasia is flawed, but the idea needs to be properly considered.

I want to be empowered to make the best decisions for myself; and if I am unable, I want the people who love me to do what they think is in my best interest. I do not want to be forced to live in a hell because the law does not take into account my “unique” circumstances or because someone imposed their values on the meaning of life on me. Given the choice of existence without living or death, I would rather choose the latter and take my chances on the other side.

In sum, what I believe is this: I support the right of an individual to choose to die with dignity. However, for that choice to be genuinely free, and for society to have confidence in that choice, we must know that we are giving the severely injured and ill the support needed to prevent them from losing hope– through the health-care system, social workers, therapy, spiritual counselling, proper insurance coverage (including automobile, and workers compensation) and the like.


 

The right to die

  1. "I do not want to be forced to live in a hell because the law does not take into account my unique circumstances or because someone imposed their values on the meaning of life on me."

    Interesting how he voted in favour of reopening the debate on same sex marriage and introducing legislation to return the definition of marriage to its traditional one. hmmm

    • I guess he figured civil unions that had full legal weight and would be treated like marriage by the government was enough to prevent someone's life becoming "hell". You know, as opposed to the actual hell of being in constant suffering.

      Really classy of you to compare the two set of circumstances though…

  2. It's strange because the first paragraph is straight up conservatism, the second is farily liberal.

    • Strange? No it's harperian relativist-conservatism.

      • Fail.

        The first graf is libertarian, the second social conservatism.

        • Other than spiritual counseling, the rest is liberal (Heatlh care system!? Social workers?!)

          Or perhapas these two schools of thought aren't so far apart.

  3. The tone is conservative but the stance is liberal. Conservatives are not in favour euthanasia and their main reason is that we shouldn't force medical practitioners to kill patients who request it because it is against their code of practice.

  4. I think the second paragraph is key to understanding this.

    Its a little like abortion. The gov't gives people a pass but then there is no follow up. There's no support system, no income support, no adoption services, nothing to make it an actual "choice". Poverty makes the choice for a lot of women who then have to live with the regret and pain of having ended their child.

    Is it going to be that people with the right to die can do so without a psychological evaluation and full round of treatment? Without first being given spiritual counselling?

    Most of the requirements that would make this a truly free and informed choice to die would probably be struck down by our courts, essentially making it a die for whatever reason, whenever you want law.

  5. I read in the paper today another of Fletcher's lines, which I found interesting. Something about the status quo being as bad (or worse) of a slippery slope towards the ongoing suffering of the terminally ill.

    I will have to think more about this. I can't stand the suffering that many people have to deal with, and yet I am not yet comfortable with where the debate is currently headed.

    Excusing miserable palliative care in our current health care system is not how I want us to embrace offing the suffering.

    • I agree with the need for caution. But I don't think you'd see it happening in situations where the patient had years ahead of them. I'm always mindful of one family member who succumbed to a horrible cancer. The final weeks were little but pain and morphine delerium for her. And she kept wanting to die, asking if it was okay with all of us. She'd said her goodbyes, was ready to go, but her body had a few more weeks of painful life to go. I sure wished there'd been the option for her to choose a sooner death.

      Perhaps more tangentally, I suspect there's a lot more 'passive' euthanasia going on than we might realize, too. And that worries me a bit more, in that there's no protections in place, as would exist with any legal system.

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