Tuesday, January 31, 2012

French President Wanna-Be Embraces Euthanasia

Just what we need in Europe - more prominent politicians being OK with euthanasia.
French presidential candidate backs euthanasia
The left-wing candidate in the French presidential election has strongly endorsed the legalisation of euthanasia if he is elected. François Hollande, a Socialist, who will face the incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy, recently revived France’s simmering  euthanasia debate. more

UK: Poll Maintains That Many Brits Think Assisted Suicide Is OK

According to this UK poll, Britons just can’t wait to enthusiastically embrace legalized assisted suicide. Of course, they also glibly think that such practices will not be abused if legal. Dream on, folks, dream on.
Legal Euthanasia Supported by Majority in Great Britain
Most respondents also think that anyone who helps a person to commit suicide should not be prosecuted.
Most people in Britain continue to endorse the idea of legalising euthanasia in the country, a new Angus Reid Public Opinion poll has found.
In the online survey of a representative national sample of 2,014 British adults, 71 per cent of respondents (+4 since October 2010) are in favour of legalising euthanasia in the United Kingdom, while 16 per cent (-3) oppose this idea. more

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Role Of Advocates In Assisted Suicide & Euthanasia

Here’s a good read on the importance of patient advocates surrounding issues of assisted suicide and euthanasia.
Humanize or Euthanize
The health care topic seems to be getting a lot of attention these days. In Vermont the Death with Dignity Bill was to be considered by the Legislature during the current session. It is now reported that the Bill will be put on hold. Physician assisted suicide is a controversial topic. Moral, philosophical, and scientific considerations are included in the debate.
In complete disclosure - I believe that all life is sacred. That puts me on one side of the argument - sort of. I also believe that if pain is so intense that it does not respond to any drug, compassion might be the preferred stance. Moral conundrums always make life complicated. To gain some clarity on this question, I recently had a conversation with a doctor. I chose a doctor who is highly respected for her humanitarianism. My question was whether or not pain could be so horrific that nothing would relieve it. I suggested putting the patient in a coma. The doctor told me intractable pain is something that can happen, and then she quickly expanded her answer. She said it is extremely rare. That is reassuring. It seems to me, a patient in pain should be given anything that works - morphine drips, pot, absinthe - anything if it can relieve intense pain.  When nothing works, we have to rethink the moral dilemma. more

Is Assisted Suicide A Selfish Act?

Here’s a story from an angle that doesn’t get a lot of exposure – that deciding on assisted suicide often has a devastating negative effect on loved ones. So I pose the question: Is dying by assisted suicide a selfish act?
Mother with rare cancer registers at Dignitas clinic... despite objections from her own SON
A teenage boy has made a heartfelt plea to his cancer-stricken mother for her not to register at the Dignitas assisted suicide clinic.
Katherine Lennard, 55, has signed up to the controversial Swiss centre to end her life if she becomes too ill to care for herself.
But while the 55-year-old's husband and elder son have backed her decision, the former primary school teacher was told by her other son Tommy, 17, that signing up to the clinic is 'morally wrong'. more

Trust Doctors About Euthanasia - Are You Kidding???

This is the kind of piece that passes as “journalism.” I read it several times to make sure I didn’t misunderstand what the author was saying. There are several inaccuracies in the story, especially the author’s ignorance about the extent of the push for assisted suicide in the US. But “trust our doctors to do the right thing?” The man has got to be kidding. The assumption that all doctors are ethically white as the driven snow is the height of willful naiveté.
Dying with dignity: Trust our doctors
Legally assisted suicide is an issue that is periodically debated, and a new Forum Research poll indicates that two of three Canadians support the idea.
When 67% of those polled favour something, it’s usually a slam dunk — unless it is Joe Clark asking Tories if he should remain as leader (1983) and finding 67% approval is short of what he thinks he deserves. Make way for Brian Mulroney.
While doctor-assisted suicide is legal in the Netherlands and Switzerland, it’s unlikely to gain traction in North America in the near future. more

Qatar Enters The Euthanasia Debate

Qatar takes on the thorny issues of children with disabilities and hospital policies.
Workshop discusses euthanasia plea by deformed babies’ parents
Parents of new-born deformed babies in Qatar have requested euthanasia (mercy killing) for their children rather than bear the burden of nursing them through a life of agony, discomfort and embarrassment.
This issue was debated at a workshop held in Doha recently on the theme of child protection, according to reports appearing in the local Arabic press.
The workshop organised by the Qatar Foundation for Child and Women Protection (QFCWP) was attended by doctors, social scientists and legal experts. more
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