The right to die
So Tony Nicklinson, a stroke victim with locked-in syndrome, has lost his court case to allow him to die.
In order to die, he would have had to get someone else to physically kill him, as he is unable to move. He describes his life as 'a living hell'.
There has been progress on 'right to die' cases in Europe recently, with clinics such as Dignitas in Switzerland providing a euthanising service for people wishing to end their own lives. Several British people have used this clinic - but the law remains in the UK that someone helping them to die, even by facilitating travel or handing them the pills, could theoretically be convicted for murder or manslaughter. (This hasn't ever actually come to court yet, but the law remains).
People opposed to assisted suicide say that this may set a precedent where old and ill people feel a burden to others, and may be pressured into committing suicide because of this.
My personal view is that we should all be able to live a life free of pain and suffering, and if this is not possible, we should have the right to choose a quick and painless death - forcing someone to remain alive in this case is tantamount to torture. Of course counselling etc should be provided to anyone considering this option, but the ultimate decision should rest with the person whose life it is.
Thoughts? Comments? Your view?