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Euthanasia vs Suicide

Discussion in 'Tilted Philosophy, Politics, and Economics' started by genuinemommy, Aug 14, 2014.

  1. PlaysWithPixels

    PlaysWithPixels Getting Tilted


    I'm isolating this part of your post because I feel that this is so important to remember, not just in the topic being discussed here, but with everyone we meet.

    *** back to lurking, carry on!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Charlatan

    Charlatan sous les pav├ęs, la plage

    Location:
    Temasek
    Depression is treatable. Incurable forms of Cancer are not.

    My father committed suicide. I know something about what it's like to deal with the aftermath. I am still not sure how I feel about his exit. This particular cocktail of guilt has more garnishes.

    His choice? You bet.
    Could I have done more to help him get help for his depression? You bet.

    It sucks all around.
     
  3. Levite

    Levite Levitical Yet Funky

    Location:
    The Windy City
    It seems to me that while depression can be a side effect of Parkinsons, Robin Williams seems to have been fighting depression for most of his life. In fact, many people who suffer from addictions also suffer from depression, anxiety, bipolar disorders, and similar problems-- sometimes the addictions actually result from attempts to self-medicate the psychological conditions.

    Suicide, in individuals not suffering physically from terminal conditions or severe chronic pain and disability, is-- as far as I have been able to tell from my training in pastoral counseling, and from my reading on the subject-- almost inevitably linked to clinical depression or related conditions. I have seen nothing so far to persuade me to treat suicide in general as anything but a symptom of psychological illness. Signs of incipient suicidalness, unsuccessful attempts, and so forth should, to my mind, be treated. And even if treatment fails, the suicide should be deemed death due to mental illness.

    However, when it comes to voluntary euthanasia in individuals suffering physically from terminal conditions or severe painful debilitating conditions, I support the right of such individuals to choose to end their own suffering, and to ask for and receive assistance in doing so if needed. A person in such a situation ought to be able to make their own decisions regarding their beliefs about life, the endurability of their suffering, and the viability of their own hope. Their legitimate decision to die should not be hampered merely because they lack the physical capacity to effect the necessary action.

    For the record, though, I oppose capital punishment as it now stands. I might not be opposed to it in the sole cases of homicidal sociopaths, provided that in addition to a reliable and multiply-verified diagnosis of true sociopathy, evidence could be provided that proved absolutely, irrefutably, beyond any and all doubt, that the individual in question did perpetrate the murder(s) with which they have been charged; once convicted and sentenced, the murderer should then have one and only one opportunity to appeal their sentence directly to the Supreme Court, and after which, if the appeal were refused or denied, execution would take place forthwith, once the murderer had been rendered unconscious with overdose levels of an opiate or similar. But as things currently stand, it is too easy to condemn people to death, too little effort is made at rehabilitation of criminals of every kind, evidence is often scanty or proven incorrect, too many technicalities are exploited to draw out trial, sentencing, and execution to unacceptable degrees, and too many innocent people end up executed.

    And in the end, I don't think that capital punishment has anything to do with voluntary self-euthanasia: the one is the state imposing death upon someone as punishment for transgression, the other is the individual desiring to terminate their own life because existence has become torment to them and no relief is available. It's apples and oranges, and to say "well, in both situations, someone ends up dead," is to say of apples and oranges, "well, they're both fruits." Sure, but entirely different ones.
     
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  4. martian

    martian Server Monkey Staff Member

    Location:
    Mars
  5. Stan

    Stan Resident Dumbass

    Location:
    Colorado
    Eloquent article.

    Death doesn't scare me, Alzheimers and dementia do. I'd make the same choice, if I could.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  6. martian

    martian Server Monkey Staff Member

    Location:
    Mars
    Well, y'know. This is a woman who had reached the end of her life, and who knew precisely what was in store for her. She chose to die with dignity, and it's a textbook case. In the end she chose to do it and there was no stopping her. What's sad to me is that her family could do very little to support her, for fear of legal repercussions.

    This is a textbook example of where euthanasia is justified and correct. I admire her spirit and respect that she chose to exit on her terms.

    I think there needs to be a differentiation between this sort of clear and sober decision to avoid suffering, and suicide driven by illness. I don't even know if suicide is the correct term for what Mr.s Bennett chose. I mean, technically it is, yes, but I think there should be a distinction there.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    Here's a relevant article I came across this morning: 29-year-old cancer patient spends last days advocating for expanded death with dignity | OregonLive.com

     
  8. genuinemommy

    genuinemommy Moderator Staff Member

    • Informative Informative x 1