Palliative Care Consultant warns that proposed “legislation will create a burden on many, which has the risk of becoming a duty…Laws aren’t just rules – they send social messages and dictate conduct.”

Oct 14, 2021 | Uncategorized

Palliative Care Consultant warns that proposed “legislation will create a burden on many, which has the risk of becoming a duty…Laws aren’t just rules – they send social messages and dictate conduct.”

SIR – If assisted suicide becomes legal, everyone in their lifetime would be presented with the option of whether to kill themselves. “Have you thought about assisted suicide?”

This includes those who are vulnerable and distraught. “Is your life worth living?”

It includes many who have misconceptions and are unaware of alternatives. “Isn’t dying painful?”

It includes many who are afraid, and it includes some who are coerced. 
 “Am I just in the way?”

This legislation will create a burden on many, which has the risk of becoming a duty.

It is a flattering lie that our choices are independent of our culture and relationships. Laws aren’t just rules – they send social messages and dictate conduct.

What is worse: not to kill someone who wants to die, or inadvertently to kill someone at their request who may have subsequently wanted to live?

Dr Matthew Doré
Palliative Care Consultant
Belfast

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