Death, my own death, is something I’ve thought about many, many times over the last couple of years. There have been times that I have genuinely wanted to take my own life, and I am very glad that there were people around me to care for me and keep me safe. For the plight of people in that position, though, to be used as an argument against passing an Assisted Dying law is morally, ethically and – since 80% of the public are in favour of it – democratically wrong.
I firmly believe that everyone, provided that they are of sound mind – mind, not body – has the right to end their own life on their own terms. In this day and age there is simply no reason that I can even begin to comprehend why anyone should be forced to live out their final days in pain and suffering, as so many have done in the past. There is no reason why someone should be forced to end their life earlier than necessary, when they may have months or even years of good times left with their friends and family, just because 630 members of parliament lack the courage to do the right thing.
To those who argue that the legislation would be open to abuse, I would point out that it proposed that every single ‘right-to-die’ decision would be approved by two doctors and then confirmed by a high court judge. What stronger safeguard could possibly be in place than that? To make arguments about forcing elderly or disabled people to take their own lives is simple scaremongering. It’s pathetic and we should ignore it.
Much as it galls me to say this: I can hope that everyone who campaigned against, or worse still voted against, this legislation goes through the pain and suffering of dying in the worst possible way, so that they can experience first hand just how wrong this decision has been.
Truly, I am appalled.