04 - EuthanasiaEuthanasia is legal only in three countries in the world, all of them EU Member States: the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. However, the reality is much more complicated, with passive euthanasia and assisted suicide being legal (or at least tacitly permitted) in several European countries.

Fundamentally, the question of euthanasia and assisted suicide usually centres on whether physicians should be able to assist – whether by administering lethal medication or providing patients with the means to do it themselves – in the voluntary death of an individual.

As part of our series of debates on Ethical Europe, we are asking whether more countries should legalise euthanasia, or whether it should be banned completely. As with many of the debates in this series, this is not an issue decided at the EU level – it is for individual European parliaments and governments to decide.

The question becomes even more complicated when we consider when (if ever) a person can really give consent to die. In 2014, Belgium became the first country in the world to legalise euthanasia for terminally ill children without any age limit. We had a comment sent in by Miro arguing that this was a terrible move, and that the federal parliament should repeal what he described as the “abominable child euthanasia law”.

To get a response to this comment, we spoke to Silvan Luley from DIGNITAS, an assisted dying organisation based in Switzerland. What would he say to Miro?

Of course, Miro, your personal opinion has to be respected. However, you must not ignore important aspects of the law in Belgium. For example… only if strict conditions are obeyed can a doctor help the patient. Besides, the patients – no matter whether major or minor – must be able to request euthanasia themselves and demonstrate they fully understand their choice.

Does a ‘grown-up’ suffer more and thus have more rights than a child? If the legal age is at 18: what is the difference between a terminal cancer-sufferer of 19 years old and the same suffering of a 17 year old? Who are we – healthy as we are – to judge over those with pain and facing death? Would you want to be denied your liberty?

To get another perspective, we also spoke to Rik Torfs, a Belgian scholar, religious commentator, and Rector of the Catholic University of Leuven. What would he say?

rik-torfsIt is true that we should be absolutely sure of the degree of awareness of people when they are making a very important decision of that kind. So, right now, it is illegal for minors in Belgium to undergo euthanasia for psychological reasons, which is good.

For the rest, we should probably have limited euthanasia with regard to age. Indeed, having no age limit, including allowing children of 7 or 10 years old to undergo euthanasia, is not the best solution. So, I would say that the minimum age should be 16, and you will see that very few people of that age will undertake euthanasia. Suicide is a problem for people of that age, but when children of that age are ill almost none of them ask for euthanasia.

Next, we spoke to Stephen Drake from Not Dead Yet, a US-based disability rights group that opposes legalisation of assisted suicide and euthanasia. What would he say?

stephen-drakeWell, I agree with Miro. The idea of giving children this so-called right is problematic on a lot of levels. If you talk to people who have had life-long chronic conditions and disabilities, almost all of them experienced the feeling that they were a burden as a child. And, being a burden is one of the top reasons that people give for wanting to be euthanised or getting assisted suicide.

With a child, they might not give this as the reason, but they feel they’re a burden on mum and dad, and they’re going to opt for euthanasia not necessarily because they want to die but because they feel guilty. And, I think it’s a crime that we will have the deaths of children facilitated because they think they’re a burden, instead of trying to convince them that that’s not the case.

Next up, we had a comment from Parthena arguing that even if you ban something in one country, people will always travel across borders to another country where the practice legal. In the case of euthansia, this has led to so-called “suicide tourism”, whereby people wanting to undertake euthanasia or assisted suicide will travel to a country (often Switzerland) where it is available. Should there be measures in place to prevent people travelling for this purpose?

We put this question to Silvan Luley from DIGNITAS for his response:

Laws preventing travelling to another country do not help in this issue and are in conflict with the human right to freedom of movement. Prohibition leads to ‘clandestine’ suicide attempts of which the vast majority fail: according to experts as well as research, for each committed suicide there are as many as ten to fifty attempted suicides which fail – with dire consequences for the individual and third persons. True protection of life lies in providing open-minded consultation and assistance to individuals considering suicide, and the only way that suicide attempt prevention efforts can be credible is if the possibility of assisted suicide is up-front respected and the taboo done away with. After all, assistance provides a reliable way to end one’s life [in a way that is] dignified, accompanied, [and] without risk of failure or suffering.

What about Stephen Drake from Not Dead Yet? How would he respond?

stephen-drakeI think that would be very difficult. We only know if someone is going to Switzerland, which is the primary country where this happens, if they announce it beforehand. So, even the idea of preventing people from travelling for the purposes of assisted suicide would probably be impossible to do. So, I think as long as assisted suicide is legal in Switzerland, there’s really very little we can or should do, except maybe really examine the practices in Switzerland, which will take almost anyone as long as they have some sort of medical condition and can pay their exorbitant fees.

Finally, we talked to Kenneth Chambaere, Postdoctoral Fellow of the Research Foundation – Flanders (FWO) and full-time member of the End-of-Life Care Research Group. He argued that travelling across borders in order to undertake euthanasia or assisted suicide can be a long and logistically complicated process, and there should be a framework in place to better support such patients:

Should euthanasia be legalised across Europe? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policy-makers and experts for their reactions.

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – IlConte


396 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. Ivan Burrows

    .

    Why are you obsessed with doing everything ‘Across Europe’ ?

    How about letting people making their own national decisions.

    • burgerphone

      Hi, I’m French so please excuse my eventual language mistakes.
      Are you attacking the basic idea of giving cross-Europe law directives ?
      Inter-countries law directives allow us to build coherent law systems. Incoherence suggests people to cross the borders to do what they want in the country allowing it (and they do : http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/830276 , and my neighbour goes to Luxembourg to fill-up his gas tank at a lower price…). Law systems become pointless. I’m not asking everyone to have the same laws though. Like American states, euro countries have different conditions and needs, and that’s fine.

    • James Campbell

      I think Ivan is obliquely suggesting that the EU leaves British laws alone because we don’t need them. If so, I’m with him on this. The EU has already done enough damage to democracy and the European nation-state.

      Standardisation of laws across borders advances the anti-democratic agenda of “ever-closer union” and, as such, in my opinion, should be opposed.

    • Yvetta

      Hi James, please help me understand how the EU is working to an anti-democratic agenda and how closer union means less democracy. From what I know countries need to have a democratic constitution before they can join. So, I can’t se how one relates to the other one. Really look forward to hearing back. Thanks.

    • burgerphone

      Yvetta, do you need historical examples of so-called democracies where political power has revealed to be kept by one person or a few people ? Even without going specific, anyone can understand democracy is a general concept, much like a star to keep aiming at while it can’t be reached. As soon as you have two people deciding something together, multiple domination mechanisms start working. Democracy is about reducing them, and it’s freaking hard.

  2. Rui Oliveira

    I think that this subject is so fragile that we must have careful in the way how we aproach the theme. This decision can only be taken by the family and the person wo see in euthanasia a way to put an end to suffering. Could and should be legalised? Its a response non consensual.

    • burgerphone

      Many people, and I’m thinking of a few French politicals, say pretty much the same in order to not debate nor produce laws about dying and end-of-life care. But we dramatically need a legal frame to regulate the practices. Without it, the fate of our elders, yours and mine when time comes, is abandonned to the personnal considerations of the medical team we will be facing.

    • burgerphone

      Right now in many countries, it’s not up to the people and their families… because it’s forbidden! So we need a debate and a law.

  3. Τεπενδρής Πίπης

    iwhat a great nazi combination.

    disabled people are a burden to society and we could easily persuade them to order their own extinction..

    you are no europe man .you are sick

  4. Bart Vd B

    it should be legal across the world, and considered a personal decision instead of a national one

  5. Jorge Qoqe

    The only reason to say ‘no’ it’s about that cristians roots that conservatives are everyday talking about.

  6. Yordan Vasilev

    The euthanasia is a very difficult problem. The physicians have a task to keep the health and the life. I think, if the suffering is very big one, the passive euthanasia is possible. The children’s euthanasia is cruel and terrible. The God gives the life and He is responsible fir its end.

    • Joana Simões

      That’s just it.

    • Jan

      Absolutly not for anyone.euthanasia should be baned and illlegal…

  7. Manuel Androulakakis

    In the 21st century, analgesics have become developed and effective enough to combat outstanding human suffering (palliative care). Moreover, even in the Netherlands, there are claims that euthanasia is sometimes misconducted. I am seriously concerned whether humans should have such power upon themselves; the notion that “even if I am sure that I will die, why not make it happen a few days earlier” is so absurd. Finally, when someone is terminally ill (not suffering -due to palliative care- just ill) he should not be allowed to deprive his friends/relatives of his very existence. It is an egotistical and wrong decision; the overall interest of society should be rather sought.

    • Diogo Guerreiro [Portugal]

      Palliative cares is a great argument. Although I support the opposite idea, it is a great argument. But what can support euthanasia? Being ill in a hospital it’s kind of artificial life. Depending on machines isn’t worthy. You can say: But just look to Stephen Hawking, a great mind that depends of machines. It’s ok because he’s someone important for science, and the answer is emotional, not rational. But can you say that, besides his work, we have a good condition of life. He decided to live, and it’s ok. But, if he have decided another thing? You can understand that they have always a choice. I’m not saying that terminal patients should be submitted to euthanasia. Simply, I’m giving them the choice.

    • Joana Simões

      I do understand your point about palliative care but I’m afraid that sometimes we overestimate it. Painkillers are actually quite developed but are they enough for every patient who undergoes palliative care? Besides that, there is a difference between taking the pain away and taking the suffering away, wright? Maybe for some people, life still makes sense even when they are sick and can’t live the way they used to. But for sure we need to understand those who can’t find a meaning for being sticked to a bed, even if the most effective painkillers are being used.

  8. Panagiotis Ninios

    Any individual with appropriate state of mind and in adult age should be able to decide to terminate his/her life if so desires.I do not think that the right to live or not should be regulated by the State.

  9. Todor Borissov

    In terms of life and death no country is enough corruption free!
    We ban death sentence due to concerns of court error and humane considerations. So we don’t kill criminals due to humanity and concerns, but we will kill patients and disordered people?!
    And how does the medical call for conformity compare to three instance judicial proceedings?
    Europe is Christian and the Christianity does not allow neither killing, nor suicide!

    You should know something about Belgium, it’s population have lived in cold swamps for thausand years and no one ever wished to deal with them nor occupy their country. Not just swamps, but cold ones! So don’t be surprised if a stadium sings cheering songs to a man who have written his own death sentence! Should that have happened elsewhere the football fans would have probably yaled “stay with us”!
    Further, recebtly Belgium approved a criminal’s request for euthanasia because of his suffering due to not being able to rape in prison.
    The EU Comission should ban Belgium for being savage country and not ask me for approval of death spree!

  10. Geoffrey Howard

    ..and as Jarek Marsza?ek touched upon: violent criminals, including rapists and pedophiles….and not by choice.

  11. Bart Vd B

    an entirely different subject, you are calling crazy ‘europeans’ where are you from yourself Ivan?

  12. Antonio Pinto Caldeira

    Even though I wouldn’t want to undergo an euthanasia process or wouldn’t promote it to any relative that kind of decision is a matter of personal choice thus the State has no right to tell people what they can or cannot do with their life.

  13. Loïc Diels

    Yes, terminally ill patients should not have to suffer. Should be a joint decision by doctor and patient alone

  14. Octavian Andrei

    Yes. Your life, your choice

  15. Asyah Azize

    They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions, I know when this door opens it will be misused and abused. No one should play God when its your time to go it will happen. They have drugs to keep you from suffering. If you really can’t stand it and you can kill yourself without others assisting you

  16. Costin Halaicu

    I don’t think this should be a decision taken at federal (supranational) level, but rather national. There are major cultural differences between European countries, and such matter should be considered with respect to the aforementioned differences. Failing to do so risks alienating majorities in certain countries from the EU, and that would definitely not be desirable.

  17. Pirjo Niemenmaa

    This is a difficult topic.

    Or, rather, both the questions of euthanasia and other forms of assisted endings of life are full of question marks, warning signals, ethical, moral-philosophical and psychological aspects to take into account.

    The persons who were interviewed expressed interesting and relevant concerns when it comes to children and euthanasia ( and also how this has been taken into consideration in laws on euthanasia).

    I would like to add one more dimension; namely our attitude to human life and ending human life.

    I claim there has been a subtle change in our collective attitude to life.

    We have seen in Western world during the last couple of decades an increase in incidents in which young, middle class youngsters have gone on a shooting spree in their previous school or in some shopping mall. In the end they killed themselves too.

    Suicide among adolescents is nothing new. What is new is the wish to kill as many other people before killing oneself.

    I fear we are witnessing a change in the collective and generational attitude to life.

    From a pragmatic point of view Euthanasia discussion today is linked with the fact that with the help of modern science we are able to prolong life more than before.

    We are also less willing to suffer or to tolerate suffering.

    These are good reasons to discuss euthanasia.

    However, economically we have been and still are in recession and need to consider how public money is used.

    I suggest we discuss this ‘temptation to end suffering’ more.
    It is very tempting to discuss ‘ending suffering’ as a way to save some money. After all, prolonging life is very expensive…

  18. Ander Anderson

    The reason this law was passed in Holland and Belguim was because terminally ill people were suffering and no longer wished to suffer because they prefered to die in their own homes helped by a doctor .Before it happens there is a consultation period with family of the person and the person themselves and the person must be able to consent to it so people who are suffering from dementia can,t recieve it and handicap people won,t get it either as one person commenting suggested .There are no death camps as some people think .My opinion is that everybody should have the choice because it,s about people and their choices and not about what politicians think

  19. Ciprian Anghel

    Yes it should be legalised across Europe for terminal ill people, they dont have to suffer anymore.

  20. Peter O'Day

    I am against it because I fear it will lead to the extermination of the disabled in time…

  21. Natasa Jevtovic

    Absolutely not! We demonstrate to keep an Ebola infected dog in Spain and don’t care about human lives!

  22. catherine benning

    Only the insane would vote for this. And here are the reasons why.

    It is really time those who wish this fate on us all must broaden their horizons and look at the reality of this issue rather than play the blind eye game.

    Have you read what is going on in Holland? Forget the USA they lie far worse than we do about what they want to push through at any given time. So, take a read of this.

    http://www.patientsrightscouncil.org/site/holland-background/

    Once you have fully recognised what is going on in civilized Europe, move on to this little thought. How do any of us know what those they are ‘killing’ are actually physically suffering as their death takes place? No, don’t run away and play I don’t want to hear this, because, you will be hearing it when the families begin to open their mouths about what happened to my mother, father or now child.

    In that great civilisation across the big pond they have capital punishment. Have had for as long as I can remember, yet, they cannot humanely put to death those they want to take revenge on, even to this day. Therefore, how will you know what mistakes can and will take place under this little death bill. What if we won’t die quickly or peacefully, as in the case of this man, who was lined up to die for his crime. Mercy killing and the death penalty are no different. The act of killing another human being takes place. A different name does not smell any different. As the bard told us so eloquently.

    http://listverse.com/2013/02/04/10-horrifically-botched-executions/

    We then need to move on to the discussion of accountability. When this bill is passed, are those who took this decision forward and made it legal going to be ready to be charged with murder? Once the families and those complainers who don’t like what has happened to their dead family member begin to see the light they are going to be calling for reprisal against those who should have known better. Those behind it. I know we don’t have the death penalty in this country, but, this project is just that, legalising a death penalty. And those who think they know all and are willing to take this step for all of us to have faith in, should be willing to pay the same price they are intending to inflict on others. And if they are not willing to bear that responsibility they should stay as far away from this deadly move as they can.

  23. Festina Lente

    No ! First regulate the dangerous pharmaceutical industry ! Too many dangerous medicaments should not and never allow ‘euthanasie’ of pall sedation….the softer name! Most people can get better naturally, only….’authorised and protected fake doctors’ do not tell you…..how is it possible that it came to this criminal acts…Shame ! ps: ‘euthanasie’ in The Netherlands IS CRIME (www.sin-nl.org) : do not follow their’ example !

  24. Alessandra

    yes, of course. Difficult to legislate, but possible. Enough checks and balances should and can be there to ensure it remains a free choice.

  25. Diogo Guerreiro [Portugal]

    The life itself it’s a great miracle. Being alive it’s a privilege. But we need to think otherwise. For some people, being alive (if they are ill) can be problematic. Just observe that live with pain it’s not living, it’s just being alive, not live but survive day by day. My question is: the desire to die it’s selfish? Can be, for family and friends, but otherwise, isn’t the desire to maintain someone alive, selfish too? The same coin with two sides! But let’s talk more serious.

    In my opinion – and an opinion isn’t a fact – it should be legal to someone choose being alive or die. The death it’s part of life – we have sun and we have the moon, both are part of the day. In Portugal, the law doesn’t permit euthanasia, but in your “vital testament” you can choose not be assisted in case of terminal state or in some accident or even if you are with pain. It’s kind of euthanasia with one difference, where the doctor doesn’t kill you, but he doesn’t help – it’s a euthanasia by omission (we can say that).

    Some people argue that in state of pain the patient isn’t lucid and with his mind clear. The wish of die can be manipulated by his state. It’s a good point. But if patient have chosen before, why don’t let him die? It’s is selfish try to put an end on pain?

    Well, you can imagine, that I accept the euthanasia. And when I said that I accept this doesn’t mean that everyone can be submitted to legal suicide. We need to regulate the law, defining precisely the allowed cases and the circumstances. That debate should be in this concepts, not in anything else. Should be legal or illegal? It is irrelevant! The life and death are natural things, not legal and illegal things.

    “ok, ok, but it is a natural death…” Yes it is. But being alive, in a hospital, with pain, with no cure, isn’t a natural life. The argument can work for both sides.
    Like many other things, instead of prohibition we need to regulate. This is another of these cases.
    “Ok, ok Diogo, but this mean that if I’m sad and ill can I choose being submitted to legal suicide?” No, it doesn’t. For that you have medics and psychologists. I’m speaking in specific and extreme cases. It’s doesn’t mean that anyone can simply choose euthanasia.

    Last point. The parliaments have the decision on this matter. Why not submit this subject to public opinion with a referendum !? This way, the culture and mindset of the people can determined what it is best for their country. For me, and my country, I think we should clearly allow euthanasia.

    • Diogo Guerreiro [Portugal]

      Correction:

      “ok, ok, but ISN’T a natural death…” Yes it is. But being alive (…)

  26. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    Yes I favor thje legalization of euthanasia in all member states of Europe

  27. Tarquin Farquhar

    Compulsory EUTHANASIA should be an option in VERY corrupt countries [according to TI] in the EU.

  28. Jeremie

    There are two parts in this debate: the euthanasia one, and the across Europe one.

    The problem with bills is to what extent you legislate and to what extent you do not. On an issue like euthanasia, there is a problem of where to locate empathy. Some will say, no because you cannot put an end on someone’s life even he consents. Other will say yes because if you are in a terminal state you should be able to decide (if capable) to leave and stop suffering or not. I would be more of the second option. Both options are empathetic, but do not see it the same way.

    My point of view is that I have empathy for someone that seeks to end his suffering and that feels ready to leave. As a human I understand that people are scared to pass away and that confronted with the option they would prefer to say hang on even if you can’t do anything with your life any more, but I believe there might be a point where there is a need to realise that the context surrounding us might be stronger than our will (terminal illness, no specific medication, no verified and accurate knowledge).

    I don’t especially feel easy discussing about it because it is such a personal issue that everyone has to answer for himself. However, if liberalism should be put forward in a topic, it might be this one. Let the people think and feel for themselves when few/no other options are left. Support them but raise awareness on the consequences and possibilities.

    As for the bill per se, it does not oblige anyone to go through that, it allows the choice.

    On the second part of the debate, I would say that I think that there should at least be a debate. If Europe wants to build a solid cultural foundation and European identity, it has to discuss/argue daily on those topics, communicate and bargain for its ideas, in order to strengthen its legitimacy.

    You cannot impose your views on other countries if you are part of what is still dominantly an intergovernmental negotiation process. Nonetheless, you can raise awareness on the need for discussion and try to convince with strong arguments.

  29. Nina Nikoletou

    It’s a tragic. I didn’t know that there is “suicide tourism” and that this phenomenon is increasing sharply.Neverthless If i get sick by a fatal disease with no hope of healing yes i would like to have the right of euthanasia in my country.

  30. Matej Zaggy Zagorc

    First of all, it shouldn’t be considered ”suicide”
    Secondly, if an animal is diagnosed with a fatal disease with no hope, and that it only means misery and hardship, they’re put to sleep. And if people want to make that same decision, it should be their right. Personally, I’d much rather die, than not to be able to do anything but lie on a bed, in an empty shell of a body, with only my mind able to work. I’d consider that torture.

  31. Maria Silva

    O mundo virou um lugar estranho! A criao de clnicas para morrer (matar), oposto ao que deve ser a misso dos mdicos e enfermeiros. A vida e a sade que so naturais! Quando os tcnicos de sade se tornam carrascos por dinheiro, est tudo perdido. Concordo com a eutanasia, mas em casos muito especiais e em hospitais normais, no a troco de dinheiro e quase s escondidas.

  32. Todor Borissov

    The BBC should send a completely healthy reporter to death and film how his application is accepted!
    Anyone who is able to travel is not euthanasia able!

  33. Adri Hulshoff

    I think that the fact that this ‘tourism’ is taking place, shows that there is a demand. Why should people have to live any longer than they want too? Why do you have to hang yourself or throw yourself in front of a train if you know your life really has to stop??? How humiliating is that?

  34. Josephine Cassar

    This practice should be stopped in Switzerland and euthanasia legalised according to country decision, no mass decisions

  35. Toni Muñiz

    Legal. If someone wants to die with dignity and on their terms why should this not be their right? Government should stay out of our lives. It’s not like we cant kill our selves anyway, so why not take the trauma of it away and legalize it.

  36. Tarquin Farquhar

    NO!

    Innocent people will ultimately be coerced or ‘convinced’ to die via peer or familial pressure.

  37. Ivanka Ruskova

    Yes please , respect patients choice,…we are humans and caring against suffering….Yes please let it be Euthanasia..

    • Prince du Sang

      It already is, unfortunately.

  38. Ed Cocks

    If someone wants to checkout of life I’m not going to stand in their way.

  39. Marc Filiuta

    Euthanasia should absolutely be legalized. It is a progress in our way of conceiving what’s moral and ethical.

    • Prince du Sang

      So now its “ethical” and “moral” to kill people and yourself! Finally!…. What progress!

      Watch what you say, people with mental illness would take it as an incentive.

    • burgerphone

      Prince Du Sang, I think you get it wrong. No-one talked about killing people. Killing is an agression, it’s done against the will of the soon-to-be-dead. Euthanasia is an act of compassion, done after the demand of the person (or his family if he can’t express himself and didn’t let know when he could, but let’s not mix everything). I’m returning to you the “Watch what you say”, because words matter here.
      I’m sure you’d cut short the suffering of your old dog, even though he can’t tell you whether or not he wants them to end. It would be both weak and inhumane not to : you love him. What’s different when we talk about a person ? Your dad or my dad (plus in this case, he may be able to express his will). Is the human life more precious, or is it just harder to accept to be the hand that does the thing ? Or even to accept another hand to do it, knowing it and not preventing it ? Because he is a human, because he’s made more like you are than a dog, it feels more like a murder, so you can’t. But your love tells you you must.

    • Prince du Sang

      Never! They shall live as long as they are able, without intervention! If it is my pet or my loved one I would stay with them until their ends making them as comfortable as possible, besides, animal hospitals only promote euthanasia for profit. In any case, most mammals other than some humans desire to live as long as possible. Life in itself is precious. What else do we have?

    • burgerphone

      Well, why do you think that ? What do you base that opinion on ? This website is for debating, we can’t debate if you don’t tell us more.

  40. Valentina Zajec

    It should be legal across Europe. If you can choose how to live your own life as you want (more or less), you can also choose how to ended it, and people are already doing it unconsciously or consciously

  41. Flavio Avy Candeli

    It should. Here?s a plea to the Italian Parliament on the subject with 70 terminal ill people, doctors, citizens, celebrities and personalities (two ex minister of the Italian Republic). “Are you alive?”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocqqnBVeM-A

  42. Ashin Joshi

    No , it should not be , because its not ethical , it will give the doctors the power to overpower our life, right to choose also have some limitations , we don’t have moral claim over death rather death do have over us so its wrong :3 , legalizing this also means to legalize all those federally controlled drugs as they are one of the material required to conduct Euthanasia . So it should not be legal .

  43. Prince du Sang

    I have depression. So it is okay to kill myself after all?

    • burgerphone

      I think I read that, in Philippe Bataille’s “À la vie, à la mort” (he’s a French sociologist who specialized in the end of life and how it’s handled by the system). Anyway, this guy wrote (because he saw it and proved it through scientific analysis) that depressed and suicidal people want to die alone, in a painful and violent way. Candidates for euthanasia are at peace with what’s coming and want accompanied by their relatives and the medical team in their last moments. There seems to be no in-the-middle attitude, so suicide and euthanasia are two very different things. That’s why the French “assisted suicide” (“suicide assisté”) is a very wrong term, which we shouldn’t use anymore. Words have a power, and here it confuses people about the stakes.

    • Prince du Sang

      Burgerphone,
      Thank you for replying, however I am going to have to disagree with some of the points you made. Individuals with depression do not always want to die painfully. Although these deaths are usually more publicized, often times people with depression want to die as painless as possible, such as overdosing, drowning, or painless asphyxiation- “asphyxie des fumées de voiture, par exemple”. Also, people with depression do not always want to die alone, in some occasions individuals with depression form pacts “pactes de suicidaire”, and agree to kill themselves as a group. It depends on the individual. I do not doubt Bataille’s authority or understanding, however I have had experiences which makes me consider otherwise. As for euthanasia, I believe that the patients who consider it want control over something they feel is uncontrollable, I am not sure if that is justifiable. Life is not meant to be completely controllable, at some points we all suffer, and face rather uncontrollable circumstances. I understand these patients are in terrible pain and suffering, however I still truly believe that he or she should not choose to end themselves, and certainly not by the hand of the doctor! Having the government make euthanasia legal would subconsciously undermine the value of life, and show its hypocrisy towards efforts preventing suicide. Also, miraculous recovery may be a weak argument for those against euthanasia, however this does not mean it is without credit. Recoveries can happen, whether or not one believes in a higher power. For example, some time ago my grandfather was believed by doctors, as well as my family to be terminally ill as he was very sick and in much suffering. Unknowingly, He had a large tumor in his brain and it had burst. As a result, he suffered from much pain and episodic seizures, and it was agreed that he would probably die, if not die, than be virtually brain dead. However, he survived with all his senses intact! I’m not saying this situation is common, but it is probable(however minuscule), even individuals with rabies have survived. Even if it is a 0.01% chance of survival, there is still a chance, your alternative is what-death? Complete Nothingness! If religion turns out to be true than damnation, as Abhrahamic religions are against submitting to suffering.
      I apologize for the lengthy response.

  44. Nando Aidos

    The EU may make it “non-illegal”, that is it! It is to each country to conquer its biases, its preconceived ideas, its taboos and move towards a more humane form of leaving this life. Yes, it should be legalized but by each individual country. Let the EU worry about other problems such as unemployment and its interference into developing countries.

  45. André Alves Figueiredo

    Of course it should be legalized. States have no moral, or any other right whatsoever, to decide how much a person should endure when one is terminally or severely ill. Unfortunately it’s still an heritage of the time’s when religion had to much power over societal issues. It’s an immoral usurpation of what should be a person’s fundamental right’s, the right to decide about one’s fate, freely and independently. It’s a shameful illegality, truly.

  46. Marijus Stasiulis

    Of course, religious people should not force everybody to live by their dogmas.
    Religious-fascism should be banned. If you think that suffering is Gods plan, than that is your choice, do not force this to other people who are sane.

  47. Marijus Stasiulis

    Of course, religious people should not force everybody to live by their dogmas.
    Religious-fascism should be banned. If you think that suffering is Gods plan, than that is your choice, do not force this to other people who are sane.

    • burgerphone

      Associating religion and fascism, and then euthanasia to communism and nihilism, that’s constructive… You both say you want to do what you want and not be bothered by what the other side thinks about it. But that can’t happen, laws are for everyone and should be written for everyone! That’s the point of debating.

  48. luc sabbe

    Euthanasia can better be implemented locally, but the EU should oblige all its memebrstates to pass a law giving every citizen the right to die, and to penalize the unnecessary treatments some doctors stubbornly give to dying patients. I wonder also how many people would refuse help in enhancing death when they are suffering immensely. I (Belgian) know of many euthanasia’s, and most of the time it is a great relief, and a pleasant family moment. When you are against euthanasia, odds are high that you die without your family being present.

  49. Paul

    I’ve known two people die badly. My father in law from Parkinson’s. Month by month you decline physically and it took about 10 years to die. The last two were bad. The pain clinic could not stop the pain and the last six months he could not walk, wash or go the toilet.

    An aunt was losing her sight so she could not read. Her hearing was almost gone. Her joints seized up so she could not knit or cook. She was losing dignity as she had accidents as she tried to get to the toilet.

    She had a heart attack – and a doctor saved her. She cursed and cursed and cursed him.

    For a time I worked in a geriatric hospital. Most people there have no dignity. They are fed, cleaned, maybe sat in front of a TV as they wait death. At least once a fortnight an old person would decide to die. It was always the same – they seem to recover, talk a little and then quietly, usually in their sleep, they would die.

    I’ve had a lucky da scape from cancer. But I have a 55% chance of a relapse. Usually the second occupancy is worst than the first spreading throughout the gut. If the operations necessary are straightforward I will take them, but it looks like I will be in constant pain, or not got to the toilet I will opt to kill myself.

    I will probably do it illegally through the Internet – I would prefer to be given the drugs and choose the time of my demise.

    I suspect that many of my generation, the baby boomers, will opt to die, rather than put up with long illnesses or even the fragility of old age.

    It would be better that we could do it legally.

  50. Paul

    On the point of the EU. I feel it should be discussed but each country must make their own rules. I cannot see a predominantly Catholic country, eg Italy or Poland, allowing assisted suicide in the near future.

  51. Inês Valente

    Yesss! are we free to make choices about our life or not? Are we owners of ourselves? Shouldn’t we be able to decide what we believe in? If we are, the only anwser is yes.

    • Prince du Sang

      The answer is no, humans s**t, p**s, get hunger, get diseases, get born, grow old, get horny, and die, etc… typically without “ones” consent.

    • burgerphone

      1 Godwin Point for you my friend.
      (but in this debate it is quite easy to reach)

  52. Alex Borg

    Yes, absolutely! We should allow a free choice to each one to decide what to do in cases where there is a threat to human dignity or suffering. We should have a law allowing us to specify it in a living will. It is useless hiding behind Catholic hypocrisy. In all states it is practiced already as an understated or discreet non-verbal psychological agreement between relatives and doctors to avoid protracted suffering of terminally ill patients. It is done through deliberate omission of “lifesaving” overtreatment.

    • Prince du Sang

      I should have the right to assist in your suicide.

  53. Joao Manuel Machado Enes

    No. Euthanasia does not give Dignity to anyone. There os still much to do for someone that has no cure for a serious illness. The technology should be used to minor the suffering. We can not allow the euthanasia. Life is preciouse. If we allow this…. Then nothing can protect human kind. Wy? Becuase one think leads to another… Think about it… And it’s not a religious matter. It’s about LIFE anda Respect for this gift.

    • Prince du Sang

      Coward!

    • Prince du Sang

      Mostly to die of course.

  54. Katerina Kyriazi

    Definitely yes. It is a human right to choose if you want to end your life under your own terms. Doctors should be allowed to help patients.

  55. Toni Muñiz

    Yes. No one should have to suffer through the pain of some illnesses if they choose not to. It is not like you can stop someone from ending their life if they choose to. Legalizing euthanasia gives the people who choose to use that right to die in dignity and on their own terms.

  56. Eleni Ktistopoulou

    In final stages of some illnesses and when there is no chance of improvement why not?when death is the only thing to wait for,a chance for a peaceful,unsuffering death is the last gift a human being should be given

  57. Alin Roman

    No. Some doctors might develop PTSD and deteriorate the quality of their work in time.

  58. Gio Cruz

    It should be legalised, but if a doctor doesn’t want to do the procedure he must have the right to opt out. But no discrimination though. If a doctor opts out, he may not do it for any patient.

  59. Lars Lynge Nielsen

    Everybody should have the right to professionally assisted suicide. And nobody should be compelled to assist against their will.

  60. Nico Selleslags

    Niet aan de EU om dit op te dringen aan staten en het is niet aan een staat om over mijn leven te beslissen… Its not to the EU to insist on this to states and it is not a state to decide about my life …

  61. Daniele Laganà

    NEVER!!! Homicide cannot be permit: euthanasia isn’t pity, it’s an unberable violence agiant the humanity!

  62. Chris Panayis

    The right to die when you want is the ultimate human freedom, and the ultimate expression of democracy. I personally condemn the principle but it is their right.

  63. Paul Spiteri

    Once there is no immediate cure why suffer!? My mum refused to have her toes amputated as has her mother had done so .. Mr Schranz couldn’t bear having the same patients taken to have their limbs repeatedly amputated when within months the patients are incapacitated and feeling nothing underneath them … Suffering surgeons, patients and relatives … Loved you Love you Shall always love mum and grand mum

  64. Alex Borg

    Yes, the problem is establishing that “want”, registering it legally in a will, and reconfirming it over time.

  65. Paul Moldovan

    No. They should make research to discover healing methods. I mean to do real research to heal not to make money from people’s sorrow

  66. Liliana Ramsing

    NO.The risks are there when it is more convenient to chose euthanasia over treatment, some will choose it from moments of depression… I do not agree with it! No to it!

  67. Paul Spiteri

    My mother looked after her mum felt the burden of caring for her own mum … Her mum was left desolate left blind abandoned in a ward … I still hear her screeching voice calling for my nannu’s name traveling all across the old age home … What depression … I visit the old age homes … Dads and Mums left there all waiting for the day of reckoning … If there is constant suffering and abandonment what’s the scope …. There are dedicated staff but when there constant suffering by the patient and no hope … Listen health would leave all humans, time is all relative, it’s the patient’s choice and the loved ones around him/her.

  68. Charlie

    Article 3.

    Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person

    Liberty: the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s behaviour or political views.

    Article 5 No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

    Article Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience

    Denying people euthanasia is a dictatorial restriction, thus a restriction of inalienable rights. This also, can be viewed as inflicting torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment on a person.

    Those that are capable of making the decision should decide, not the State authority.

  69. Georgi Tashev

    Of course, when EU do not want to provide REAL medical help to all euro citizens. Come and check how the people suffer in Bulgaria. Because NO Европейската комисия в България / European Commission in Bulgaria to work for…. All, is PR only.

  70. Georgi Tashev

    Many people in Bulgaria died because of EU, EU wants only money, year payments, but that is paid from the poor Bulgarian people – not personally, from the criminal politics – which by the way EU protecting. In Germany, if you live poor, you receive social help… Food stamps, help for electricity bill, help to disable people….. But why EU to care for that – this people is NOT Europeans, they are even no humans…. I’m looking for my disabled mother, , the government REFUSE operation and helping her, helping me… Now I do have no work, caring for her…. Which means – no money, no good food, no enough money for medicine, bills and etc…… Before, when Bulgaria was no member in EU, I had tomatoes in my garden, typical Bulgarian. EU took a way from me that. Before, before I ate yogurt, now eat preservatives, because that wants EU – Shame on you. EU kills people. Like US.

  71. Gatis Gailitis

    Euthanasia should be allowed within EU out of mercy for someone who has severe illness , trauma etc. that causes severe pain and deterioration of their condition.
    Personally. If I knew I am about to go through days or weeks of agonising pain before death, I would myself consider euthanasia and pass away peacefully. This choice should be respected, nevertheless there should be procedures in place to perform it.

  72. σαντυ αλεξανδρου

    Difficult issue.It depends on many things.On family bonds ,religion,how you were brought up.Although i understand,it terrifies me,to have to take the decision to kill someone i love.I’m not God.And how can we be sure that the person wants to die?If you pay the doctors anything can happen.Every country should decide for themselves.Because we are different and it’s not democratic to have to aggree with each other.

  73. Joey Stack

    Without question this should be legal across the whole of the EU; people don’t have to do it, but the option should be there if they choose to do it; I have personal experience within my family of a condition which would come under grounds for euthanasia, and I fully believe that anyone in such severe pain and suffering deserves the right to die with dignity and on their own terms; I can’t see the EU doing anything about this though; the unelected beauracrats in Brussels are more worried about things like money and power to worry about little things like the pain, suffering and dignity of their citizens…

  74. Josephine Cassar

    No, where are values any more? Every country should decide for itself. Those who want it, move to a country that offers it, values bye bye

  75. Tony Kunnari

    A thought came to my mind. Since when have we had the ‘right’ to deny someone else of what they simply want to accomplish? This in relation of enrivonmental variables: genetics, social and digital; when did we become such ‘organ’ that has the ‘right’ to discriminate minorities on the basis of what they should do in accordance to what we ‘think’ they ought to do as a majority? How do we define what should be done and what should not be done?

  76. Emil Panayotoff

    That’s should be legal but only people who have said that they accept it before being sick should have the right to use it the day it may be necessary. People should have the right to decide themselves about that.

  77. Alex Bell

    Yes, for people who are ill or who lost their purpose and during a 6 month period of evaluation with a professional they may be given the exit.

  78. Isabel

    I believe euthanasis should be legal all over the world. But it’s too much asking the EU to decide for all countries in it. In Portugal, for example, it’s difficult for people to accept this idea (that goes against Christian values). As much as I would like to see my country passing a law for euthanasia to be legal, each country should be the one to debate the issue and evolving towards it. But the EU must put this issue in the agenda in order to enlight and involve citizens in issues that really matters.

  79. Bronco Petrovic

    I was doubtful at first but now I support it but it is very complicated! And not possible for all EU! it is possible in good regulated Western countries where system works for many years, but thats impossible to manage corectly in Eastern Europe where democracy is bad, countries are terribly corrupted, nothing works etc… Its impossible for entire Europe therefore to allow this. Some countries are 1000s of years ahead of some! Would you dare to vote for it in Eastern Europe? i dont think so

  80. Gururaj Bhat

    There is one saying that ideas only will rule the world but what idea means there are good and bad ideas but ultimately ideas will control the mass.
    The way to put the ideas in to isms is of two thinks that is by forceing the mass and the other the benefit of man kind .
    Ism like religions and political isms have harmed the human beings by wsy of terrorisms and by force killed millians of people on this earth to establish in this world .

  81. Alex Borg

    Yes, but it should be limited to the self, and only in extreme cases of terminal illness, suffering and loss of dignity should it be decided by third parties, namely family, spouses, partners and close friends.

  82. Maria Pacheco

    Yes. People have the right to chose to live or not. As far as they have the mental capacity to do it…

  83. Tamara

    I think yes, euthanasia should be legalised. It should be the right of an individual to choose whether or not that person wants to end his or her own life.

  84. Raquel

    It should because be alive, many times is not the same of living. It is a difficult subject to legislate, but it is something really scary to know that anyone might end in such situation that is not wort to exist any more but without the capability to die.

  85. Aliki Elisa

    yes it is one’s right to decide how and when to go….it is also the basis of a civilised society that respects the last wishes if an individual.

  86. Wendy Harris

    We have “assisted dying” in the UK already – it’s called Iain Duncan Smith.

  87. Giö Cruz

    Yes and I wonder if the people saying “no” really have looked at the systems of the Benelux-countries. Its not like anyone can get euthanasia for any reason. The person in question must be suffering heavily and there must be no way to get rid of the suffering. The patient has to request his doctor, after which his doctor + an independent doctor have to give the ok.
    I think the system is set up nicely so that sick people in extreme cases can decide to die.

  88. Bjorn Franceses

    Legalise because the pain can be avoided in all parties

  89. Naomi Ozaniec

    YES – knowing that the possibility is available reduces the fear of pain and the indignities of old age – often l lived alone and in difficult circumstances. Euthenasia should be available for mental suffering too – it may be invisible but it is real – and ‘tired of living’ oh yes each person knows when they have reached the limits of their endurance – I have reached mine and would HAPPILY depart this life as soon as possible.

  90. friardchips

    Hi! How about we simply pass laws in favour of preserving life rather than finding reasons to kill life, with a goodly duty-of-care perception, and attitude, rather than a duty-to-rid-ourselves-of-having-to-care, all is lost, attitude. Thanks.

  91. teejay

    Of course it should he legalised. We are not barbarians. Why would anyone wish to prolonging miserly and suffering? If we treated animals the way we treat suffering humans be would be locked up and rightly so. As usual religion is the root cause of the problem. We need to move on to a more civilized world.

  92. friardchips

    With all due respect, it is “barbarians” who think that relevance and worthiness of life, is based on convenience alone. Look to history, and it becomes apparent that leaders who committed Genocide killed for power, and therefore, convenience. The principle is the same, whether as an individual, a group, or a nation, killing/terminating/ending life intentionally, is not void of the moral aspect, which comes into existence, in relation to humans. The only way that killing human life would ever be okay as a convenience is if there was no moral character to the act, but we are human beings, so there is. I reiterate: it is “barbarians” who kill human life, whatever the excuse, because killing human beings should never be considered convenient.

    Thanks.

  93. Jean-Pierre Rosa

    Absolutely. People should have the right to determine when to end their life, with medical support and guidance.

  94. Stefano Zuzzi

    Yes, because in my homeland do not exist yet and, if you need it,you have to go until the Swiss to pay 10.000 euro.,andthis is an expensive that not
    everybody can effort.

  95. Ainhoa Lizar

    Of course legalize euthanasia… and also make organ donation compulsory by law… As we have plenty of responsible and not corruptible people leading us… Don´t worry when people start disappearing or suddenly decided to suicide…

  96. Jorge Lux

    Yes, so we can euthanize every european politics and start a new Europe

  97. Andrej Němec

    NEVER.
    The fight for life should be carried out till the end! There is no end until the end is there. The fact that so many people are for euthanasia shows how weak Europeans have become. Even life itself has become not enough important to fight for it.
    You’re a bunch of pussies!

  98. Stefania Portici

    per me no. Un paziente può decidere su sè stesso ma non può chiedere e pretendere ad alcuno di trasformarsi in assassino. Il mio Paese non ha l’eutanasia e ne sono contenta

    for me no. A patient can decide on itself but can not ask and expect anyone to become murderess. My country has not euthanasia and I am happy

  99. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    It should be banned and pain medication should be offered with counselling/cognitive therapy etc. If anyone is determined to take their life [suicide] it is their own decision and their own action. No other person should be made to assist legally, even if they agree with it. If it is legalised it will become another form of profit-making business and many people will legally take their lives that may never have if it wasn’t made so easy. That is unethical when it is assisted suicide for money whether it is tax payer money that pays for it or the private individual who chooses to die. And greed for a new business will create uncaring people who assist suicides to make a profit deceasing humanities ethical standards EU wide. Also it is time that tax-paying individuals choose where their tax money goes. Many people do not wish to fund bombings in other countries, assisted suicides etc so I think it is time the EU offered a choice of where their tax money goes. Many people do not wish to become enablers of practices and actions with their tax money they do not agree with, would never do themselves and burden their conscience.

  100. Hugo Dias

    Why not? If murder an human without their consent is legal (abortion) why someone wanting to end his life with support of medical professionals should not be legal?

  101. Rácz Tivadar

    YES! To a life in dignity belongs an end in dignity and respect for each personal decision – this after we already have accompanied some of our beloved family members on their way without return.

  102. Katerina Kyriazi

    Yes. People have a right to chose how they die, particularly when suffering from.serious terminal diseases.

  103. Răzvan Grigore

    Doctors swore the Hippocratic oath. Therefore they must do what ever they can to keep a person alive. Euthanasia is not ethical.

    • Michael Holz

      Greyzone. The oath says keep patients from harm, not keep them alive under all circumstances.

    • Edita Buržinskaitė

      Keeping a person “alive” when they’re damaged beyond repair is unethical. Euthanasia in this case is the only ethical thing there is.

    • Jakub Rozdżestwieński

      Doctors do not swear Hipporatic oath.

      Learn some facts before commenting

  104. Martin van Boven

    Deciding to live or to die should be the decision of people themselves.
    No-one should be allowed to interfere, for whatever reason.
    And assisting people with it should not be illegalised. Which is the actual problem, it has been /illegalised/ in mamy places and that nonsense should be scrapped.

    • Martin van Boven

      You are right there, I was a bit too black and white, and actually agree that assistance by others should be subject to proper scrutiny. Like it currently is in e.g. The Netherlands, I believe.
      Having said that, if proper scrutiny has been given, assistance has been offered, I believe we have no right to stand in the way or refuse help even in such cases.

  105. Vytautas Vėžys

    If every citizen will have right to do it at any time without responsibility then yes.
    if not, it’s legalized murder.

  106. Chris Pavlides

    NO. Very convinient for those who shape future societies of mass unemployment, global income and a flat disconnected from human nature living.

  107. Anna Tsoukala

    Yes If someone suffers from an incurable disease they should have the right to end their misery

  108. Theodoros Kondakos

    Until I saw my grand father dying slowly from Esophagus cancer I was not sure. I saw life draining out if him day after day week after week for months. In the end my restless grandfather was nothing more than a mass of skin and bones. This man should have the right to assisted suicide.

  109. Bódis Kata

    I remember a young woman being euthanized because of depression. Should make you think.

    • Anita Ivan

      Depression is a serious illness, people struggling every day, they are unable to work, locked between the 4 walls, finally they commit suicide. I feel for her.

  110. Maciej Krzyminski

    It sould be legal indeed. It does no harm to anybody and helps to protect human dignity. Never to mention that a person has an explicit right to choose!

  111. Andrea Brown

    For politicians and religious leaders, definitely. For the rest of us, that would be a serious and difficult debate.

  112. Apostolos Garoufos

    Yes, it’s my firm belief that life is something vital and unique for ourselves! But on the other hand is something “ours” and we have the ability to choose for ourselves whether we want to live or not!

  113. Craig Coady

    I think it should but can only be said by the person that wants it not the partner. So you can sign saying if I get to this point I want to in a nice way be put to sleep..

  114. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    If people want to kill themselves they should recieve counselling. After that if they still want to they should do it themselves and not put the responsibility on someone else for killing them or supplying them with the means to die. It is unethical to involve another, even if the others consent.

    • Christofer Sjöholm

      What about people that never have or never will again have any means of contact with the others or the world?

    • Julia Hadjikyriacou

      I thought of that. It is still murder. It is unethical to take another life unless it is in self-defence.

  115. Christofer Sjöholm

    Yes. It is heartaching to see the relative torture that goes on in nursinghomes and “care” facilities.

    Consider the population increase. Western Europes lack of self reliance considering life victuals, never forget the 20th century. It would be a crime keeping people who cannot and do not want to live alive while at the same time not providing reasonable nutrition and safety for healthy fellow humans with will to live elsewhere.

  116. Georg Blaha

    The yes is obvious. This must spark doubts about its consequences. Can we handle the ethical issues arising from a general agreement to voluntarily pass away? Which ones can we discuss at present, how are we going to react when the unforeseen consequences come up? Are there any numbers how many people are for and how many say they would turn to it when their time comes? What does police say about the number of unsolved cases of murder which could fall under this topic? As you can see, I am for it. For whom it is a moral question, that is their problem not mine.

  117. José Bessa da Silva

    I am most certainly in favour of euthanasia but no, it should not be legalised “across Europe”. Nothing should. Europe is not a country. Stop asking this useless questions. Stop with your federalist propaganda.

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  119. Vicky Moutsatsou

    Is it possible though to tell if someone is depressed out of his situation ie a painful terminal illness or clinically depressed when they could get treated and live better ? For me, watching my sick father asking for breath instead of giving up it is a Big question. Therefore I think euthanasia is a right, as long as it is a choice of clear judgement and all suspicious aspects are firmly settled. Finally I ll agree with the recent question,
    What’s this across Europe thing?

  120. Anita Ivan

    I have a serious and terminal illness, I am ever so grateful that I live in Belgium, so I am not afraid of the end. Don’t judge until you walked in my shoes.

    • Leletta Selassie

      I have a friend who also lives in Belgium and is glad she has that option.

  121. Mariana Giozova

    No! Life is precious. Always there is a chance,even when is impossible. New day New beginning. Never lose faith that something good might happen.

  122. Andreas Androutsellis-Theotokis

    In principle, yes, euthanasia should be legal. Of course, with a system of counseling and support (you don’t want a drunk kid go through it just because his Saturday night date didn’t go well). What right does anyone have to prolong someone’s unbearable suffering? Society has accepted the morality of euthanasia for our pets because we recognize that in certain circumstances there is no hope but only suffering; we do it in the interest of our beloved pet. Then why not for humans? And to those who speak of God and not “playing God”: Leave YOUR God out of everyone else’s lives.

  123. Joao Yohanan

    Off course yes. Who is anyone to judge a person who is in unbarable suffering and the doctors can t do anything more for his or her condition?

  124. Leo Van Doesburg

    Again this topic is put subjectively. In the article is not written that for example the United Kingdom voted with a big majority against the legalisation of euthanasia.

    I think I will unlike debating Europe because they are only discussing issues that even by the Treaties is NOT an EU competence.

    It will be time that Debating Europe will discuss issues that are EU competences and the real problems the EU as a Union faces instead of talking about “ethical Europe” and respect the diversity in the EU. There is no “Ethical Europe”

    Just like this push on prostitution and now on euthanasia: no, not only it is not a subsidiarity principle, but is not an EU competence. Let the countries decide for themselves. Why is Europe needed here? Because three countries legalized it? If the Netherlands may legalize the assisted suicide of people above 75 years old, should this be also put into discussion that this should be legalized for all the other Member States?

    Terrible.. focus please on real European issues

    • Joseph Schembri

      Yes they do, but that scares me, I mean what is easier keeping old people ‘s houses paying pensions or kill the old. They all ready increased retirement age!

  125. Elia Atanas

    Why is it “legal” to kill your Horse,if it has an injury/ illness beyond healing ? And saying no to humans ? Why, so they suffer even more ? Makes no sense.

  126. existential philosopher

    This is a question the answer to which transcends our understandings of ethics and limited knowledge of the universe. I am no exception :-). But let me offer views that hopefully broaden the discussion. By denying life, we are denying a gift of God (or the devil depending on what you believe.) This gift supposedly came with a pact that it was given to us in exchange for a service or many services that we need to perform in exchange. This is a religious interpretation reducing the relationship with God to a business transaction (nice try by stale institutions). If the gift of life is a gift, why do we need to give anything in return? Moreover, if it is a gift, why cannot we decline it? On another note, if assisted suicide is legal, theoretically and practically governments can manipulate people and coerce them opt out of life. However, govts already do so by asking us to go to wars and be killed and to go and kill other people for the govt. I would claim that assisted suicide is a more civilized and targeted arrangement for achieving the same goal. No wars and no bystanders caught in the maelstrom. In a way the laws that prevent assisted suicide are more inhumane and a remnant of atavistic sacrificial rituals, that largely but not entirely we have abandoned. Religious teachings have denied the right to die mainly from political considerations. None of them absolutely rule out war, none prevent sacrifice for the good of all, and none put life above the commandments of the deities. It is simplistic, yet tempting to ask how come the life is at the discretion of the diety, at the discretion of society, at the discretion of an institution, but by holy commandment not at the discretion of the individual who has to bear its burdens and enjoy its illusory lapsed. Isn’t the sanctuary of life in this case a rather tyrannical structure, built on beliefs without understanding? If I deny euthanasia and assisted suicide, I will lend a lot of credence to this conjecture. But, if I do not I will be in conflict with it’s pastoral past and emotional attachment to tradition. Living under the scepter of rites filled the void that denial of life choice created and managed depression under the guise of attaining one-ness with the universe. Yet this was a shallow patch, as is contemporary psychoanalysis, that is longer relevant. If we do not trust humans to make the right choice on life, how can we trust them to make the right choice on other people’s fates and lives? Otherwise democracy is monumental misconception of an autocratic mind-frame. Time to grow out of the prison of our imagination, no?

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