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The Forum > Article Comments > Elect a dignified death > Comments

Elect a dignified death : Comments

By Geoff Wall, published 27/2/2015

For how much longer can a noisy minority overrule such a massive majority? Until that majority shakes off its apathy and uses its political potential.

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The problem with legislating euthanasia, it requires a doctor absolutely dedicated to saving life, to be complicit in what may or may not amount to legalized murder, as a solution for aged depression or loneliness, or a mistaken diagnosis; or all of the above!

Now, given we all of us past the age of consent can and should create a living will, which decides just how we will die, I think the argument is just empty rhetoric; or as proven elsewhere, heads in a direction which will inevitably allow very young depressed kids to opt out, with permissible public medicine?

We have the means and at far less cost to the public purse, to opt for such preventative medicine, as would prevent the aged becoming frail or demented or depressed!

But live entirely independently, in relative robust health and free of age related degenerative disease, until their allotted time; and without ever becoming a walking pharmacological repository!

Now that's what I call dignity, and of the fair dinkum variety!

We don't need to kill people, just help them stay well!

My old Irish Granny lying on her deathbed, was asked by the visiting Doctor, while reaching for a needle, "are you bedridden Mrs Sullivan"? "No, but sometimes in the gig", she replied.

Quality of life varies with age, and given she was surrounded by her caring family, precious to her every waking moment!

If we want to be truthful, the only people who want their oldies PUT DOWN LIKE A WORTHLESS DOG, are the so called grieving relatives, or should I say, those who want their own very personal discomfort to be over.

So the reality is; we're never ever talking about the discomfort or the rights of the elderly here are we?

Just those of the, I've had enough of this crap, relatives, aren't we?

Where there's a will, there's always a relative!
Rhrosty.
Posted by Rhrosty, Friday, 27 February 2015 11:29:25 AM
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Rhosty
no-one is suggesting that we euthanase depressed kids. Itís about people with terminal illness having the right to die with dignity and minimal suffering
Posted by Rhian, Friday, 27 February 2015 3:13:22 PM
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Rhian, that is what happens now!

And hardly a day goes by, than there's a new breakthrough, that turns a formerly terminal illness into a manageable condition that can be lived with or cured!

The real quest, and I think we can agree, is the quality of that life?

And therefore, we need to include medicinal marijuana, and heroin, as more effective than morphine, pain relief.

However, as with morphine, efficacious pain management will eventually kill the terminally ill patient!

And so, euthanasia already happens, particularly if there's a living will setting out what treatments should be included and that which is withheld, which by the way can and does include food and water!

Albeit, all while pain suppression can be increased!

So, and given a living will, euthanasia is a literal fact; but only for those who have expressed a desire to have it as their expressed option!

That being so, there's no need to provide a blanket law, or a one size that fits all.

I mean, one can resort to placing an elderly relative in a shipping container, in the dead of a southern winter; and who knows what else!?

And given that's what some sad sack controlling relatives do now, what will happen when they can resort to more legal means and just by badgering the frail and elderly, who have no other choice than to comply, as the better less fearful option! And given that's so, hardly a dignified end?

As I said, where there's a will, there's a relative.
Rhrosty.
Posted by Rhrosty, Friday, 27 February 2015 7:02:10 PM
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Rhrosty is displaying the typical attitudes of those who oppose legislation allowing people who are suffering unbearable pain and anguish from terminal or hopeless illnesses to request access to medical assistance in dying, also referred to as Voluntary Euthanasia.

Rhrosty thinks that Palliative Care can solve all the problems of terminally ill patients, but hasn't read the informed opinion of Palliative Care specialists like Dr Roger Hunt in Adelaide who publicly state that about 5 to 10% of Cancer patients under his care ask for medical assistance to die.

Rhrosty also thinks that his opinion is so important that it outweighs the vast majority of people in our society. Several properly conducted polls over the past few years show that between 75% and 85% of the population are in favour of VE. He probably doesn't know that this significant majority includes over 70% of Christians, of which I am but one.

Rhrosty also uses scaremongering tactics to say that people are going to be given lethal medication against their wills by greedy relatives. He doesn't realise that the person who is suffering must be the person to request assistance to die and must meet strict guidelines to prevent the exact abuse he is alleging will occur.

Also, overseas experience shows that the peace of mind which comes from access to VE means that some people actually live LONGER than they would have without that access.

Rhrosty's objections are unfounded,on the basis of 17 years experience in Oregon USA, where Brittany Maynard recently received assistance to prevent terrible suffering from her Brain tumour.

It is time that the wishes of the vast majority of Australians are heeded, and that VE legislation be enacted nationally.
Posted by OzGKW, Sunday, 1 March 2015 1:46:29 PM
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I agree with the author.
We really do need to have a referendum at the next election re whether we should have voluntary euthanasa legalised or not.

Any intelligent person in the community knows all the issues associated with this debate already, so surely a simple question on the bottom of tbe ballot paper asking
"Would you support the legalisation of voluntary euthanasia....yes or no?"

This would be a democratic referendum, where no religious or political organisations would have any say in it......just the voters.
Posted by Suseonline, Sunday, 1 March 2015 5:46:32 PM
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I know of people who have died of cancer and who have died in agony. I do not want that for me or for others. If I was in pain and in the last stages of terminal cancer, and if I had the choice, I would choose voluntary euthanasia. I would choose a calm pain free death with dignity. Palliative care does not guarantee a painless death no matter what the experts say. Some pain cannot be controlled.

I also know of an elderly lady who was dying and in the last stages of dementia who had nutrition and hydration with held. How is this acceptable in the 21st century? How is it reasonable to let her dehydrate to death? Surely even if it slows down the dying process, it would be more humane to keep her hydrated and use a narcotic or some other drug to ease her out of this life? I know which death I would choose and it wouldn't be dehydration - even if you are unconscious, it would still be a horrible way to die - your tongue and lips dry and crack. Again this is standard practice. This is considered to be a reasonable way to let people die, while voluntary euthanasia is considered barbaric and remains taboo. What the heck is wrong with our society?
Posted by BJelly, Sunday, 1 March 2015 7:28:56 PM
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