To die, or not to die...
who gets to answer the question?
And note, we're talking about Suicide-- assisted or not. The argument has popped up in California so I felt the need to talk about it again, with a bit of focus on "assisted" due to the passing of the new Law.
The concept of assisted suicide has been around for at least as long as we've had recorded history. In some cases, a person simply wants someone there as to not die alone, but they perform the act their self. In other cases, such as a ceremony performed in old Japan, the person begins the suicide-- which proves they are serious, and a willing participant-- and then the assistant finishes the deed.
Granted, assisted suicide has also been used nefariously, but as I've stated many times, I do not believe in outlawing something just because there are those who abuse it; punish the abuser, not the rest of us.
So, how do I feel about assisted suicide? Lets look at it from a couple of angles.
First, and foremost, I am an unwavering supporter of personal Rights; I believe every individual possesses unquestionable authority over their own life. You want a full body tattoo, get one. You want to have crazy asphyxia sex, knock yourself out. (Pun intended)
Therefore, I absolutely support assisted suicide from a Constitutional standpoint. Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness, just like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. If the Government gets to force its version on you, then you don't have Freedom.
Next, let's look at it from a Law standpoint: you can't punish a dead man. How, exactly, do you pass a Law you know you can't uphold against the person who broke it? Then there's solving the case; if we get rid of the stupid Law, then real doctors can-- in the company of a family witness, attorney, etc.-- perform the act and remove any doubt of fair play, saving the tax payers thousands of dollars due to not having to discover if it was a murder or not.
And, I mean, if I decide to bite the bullet by going "rock climbing" and just jump off... will my Life Insurance still pay? Are we really going to punish the innocent (survivors) for the act of the supposed "criminal" (person who kills theirself)? I've made it clear I'm against that, too.
I have been called "selfish" for my support of this topic. It has been argued to me that if I were to kill myself, I'm just being a selfish asshole for not thinking about others.
Obviously, I do not buy into that hypocrisy. Telling me that I must stay here to make you happy regardless of my own feelings only brings up one response, "Take your own fucking advice and give up YOUR feelings for mine."
If I try to look at this topic from a Moral perspective, I find that I'm asking myself to define "Evil". Since I don't believe in God, I can't use that as a compass for either side of the argument, or even discuss the Bible's take on it with most people who do since they tend to overlook Jesus giving up his own life once he decided he was done suffering on the Cross.
What I'm left with is "intent". In the case of someone living with chronic pain, for example, it seems Evil to me to force them to live with it just to make us happy, to make us feel good.
If you still can't see that point, picture this: you know those fences with the pointy arrow on top? Imagine someone falls and catches an arrow through their leg. So they're hanging there, in agony, and you could easily walk over and help them down; but you don't. And if the person tries to free himself, you hold him in place. It's not your fault they're in pain, so why feel guilty? And hell, maybe it's just meant to be and that suffering is their cross to bear.
Do you understand yet? Making the decision to FORCE someone to continue suffering by denying them the ability to end it, with or without your help, is Evil to me. I cannot support the suffering of another simply for my own enjoyment, and certainly not under the guise of feeling good and Morale with myself.
I think that's it. I can't come up with any support for a Law which allows us to force someone to go on living against their own Will.