YspeopleExplore tab


I will die with or without your help

About DJC

The older I get, the less I know and the more inquisitive I get.

Unfortunately, despite a lifelong search, most of the answers elude me. That said, I love to ask the questions and fuel the debates that will ultimately lead us all to a better understanding of the big issues in life, the universe and everything.

They say that we spend 98% of our lives in our head. I for one would like to use that time as effectively as possible.

Here's why all the arguments against euthanasia -- both ethical and religious -- are bunkum!

For me, movies are often remembered for a single line of dialogue that sums the story up in just a few words.

Euthanasia is my choice and nobody else's.

Euthanasia is my choice and nobody else's. Picture: Shutterstock

In the movie Life Is A House, a critically ill father was asked by his son if he was going to die. The father, played by Kevin Kline, responds: ''We are all going to die, I am just going to die a little earlier than we expected’. In the movie Whose Life Is It Anyway?, the central line of dialogue is, not surprisingly, ''whose life is it anyway?''.

These two lines of dialogue sum up two of the principle arguments in favour of legalising euthanasia. The other argument for many will be ''if you don’t help me, I will find a way of dying without you''.

Assisted dying involves the relief of pain and suffering. It can also relieve the individual of the distress and responsibility of finding their own pathway out of this world.

I believe that every individual has a perfect right to take his or her life -- and have never heard a cognitively sound reason why they shouldn't

I've heard plenty of emotive arguments and some very sound cognitive arguments for safeguards. But I've yet to hear a cognitive argument against euthanasia that will stand up to the socratic test.

I've also heard the religious arguments against legalising euthanasia. There are most certainly those who believe that God frowns upon it, while others says it constitutes a moral sin to take one’s own life or  the life of another. Setting aside the support by many religious people for state-sanctioned executions and killing in war (which seems to fly in the face of protestations about mortal sins), sins are surely between an individual and their God.

Just as I don't believe anyone should have to behave in a manner consistent with my beliefs, I shouldn't have to behave in a way consistent with theirs. If someone’s faith forbids euthanasia, they shouldn't do it. If euthanasia or any other behaviour is consistent with their beliefs, then why shouldn't they be able to?

The more common cognitive arguments against euthanasia include:

  • That it is open to abuse and coercion;
  • That the person may not be of sound mind;
  • That there may be a cure around the corner;
  • That euthanasia is never necessary.
  • I believe the first two are really just arguments for effective controls and processes. The requirement for evaluations by independent and qualified third parties, as per the recent Victorian legislation, is sufficient to negate both of these arguments.

    And in my view, the third and fourth arguments are completely negated by the line from the previously cited movie Whose Life Is It Anyway?

    If it is my life, I should be able to take it whenever I want, regardless of my state of health, age or circumstances. Certainly, there should be the requirement for counselling to explain in detail the pros and cons, and even the intended and unintended ramifications, but it is the individual’s life to do with as they wish and in the end, they are only bringing forward what is going to happen anyway.

    Other common arguments against euthanasia -- such as it devalues life,  is incompatible with palliative care, and that it is not in the best interests of the individual concerned -- are highly emotive and subjective. They are such that it would be very difficult to debate socratically.

    Who values life or determines what value it has? I have no intention of playing God in this way.

    How is artificially relieving pain for relatively short periods incompatible with relieving it permanently through an artificially induced death, which simply brings forward the inevitable?

    Who should determine what an individual's best interests are? Surely, given that they are sane, it is up to each individual to make such decisions.

    For me, it all gets back to those two movie lines ''we are all going to die, I am just going to die a little earlier than we expected'' and ''Whose Life Is It Anyway?''

    Conservatives should stop trying to control the lives, and deaths, of others!

    Banner 2
    | Your rating
    No ratings yet

    Related stories

    Get yourself checked out men! (Image: Shutterstock).

    Men and Alzheimer's: what you need to know

    Men are more at risk of undiagnosed Alzheimer's than women, studies show.

    Ageing Health
    1 day ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Values and thinking are so important.

    Why I seek solace in solitude

    I've developed a less-than-typical outlook on life. But here's why that's ok.

    Community Family Ageing Health
    1 day ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Pets have a positive impact on health and well being in retirement.

    How pets are great for over-50s health

    No matter whether you're a dog or a cat person, having a pet can have a positive impact on life in retirement.

    Animals Fitness Health
    4 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Think about and share your life motto with us! (Image: Shutterstock).

    Reader mottos to live your life by

    Some words of pure wisdom, straight from the mouths of our YsFriends. 

    Community Kindness
    5 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Photo by Rodolfo Sanches Carvalho on Unsplash.

    Here's how to find your happy place

    In such a crazy world, it vital that find your happy place.

    Relationships Ageing Health
    9 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Live every day like you mean it .

    About the only thing separating us is luck

    For most of us, a cancer diagnosis is largely luck of the draw -- and a reminder to live fully each day.

    Ageing Fitness Health
    11 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Are you thriving or surviving in retirement? Picture: Shutterstock.

    The secret to a happy retirement


    Have you retired intentionally, or been dragged kicking and screaming into it? Here's how to thrive in this new stage in life.

    Money Fitness Health Ageing
    13 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    The silent killer.

    Obesity: the killer within

    Did you know, more than 600 million people in the world today are obese? Here's more on the silent killer..

    Ageing Fitness Health
    17 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Podiatrists don't just help with foot problems!.

    3 unusual reasons to see your podiatrist

    Podiatrists treat all things feet. But did you know they can also help with some unlikely or seemingly unrelated areas?

    Ageing Fitness Health
    18 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Your chances of dying from a shark attack are minimal.

    What will you die of?

    There are about 160,000 deaths each year in Australia. What's likely to get you?

    Fitness Health Ageing
    19 days ago
    (Health & Beauty)
    Trending stories
    The dingy alleyway that leads to 78 Records is full of bins and junkies.

    What it's like to work in junkie alley

    An alleyway that almost...

    (Money & Business) 6 days ago
    New CBA CEO Matt Comyn.

    Why 'banker' should start with a W

    It's our fault that the big...

    (Money & Business) 4 days ago
    Top Indonesian chef Chandra Yudasswara will be cooking up a secret storm for Taste Great Southern.

    Celebrity chef set for a Secret Affair in Great Southern

    Take one of Indonesia's top...

    (Epicure) 30 days ago
    When it comes to great bloggers you can connect with, this list has you covered.

    20 mature bloggers worth following

    Looking for Australian...

    (Entertainment & Culture) 11 months ago
    Gough Whitlam formally hands back land to the Gurindji people, pouring soil into the hands of elder Vince Lingiari.

    Love or hate him, Gough changed your world

    This is why Gough Whitlam...

    (Nostalgia) 3 days ago
    Weekly Poll
    Haiku of the week
    Memory lane