MPs Missing the Wood for the Trees image

MPs Missing the Wood for the Trees

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I've posted on Think a few times about the dangers of shifting societal attitudes towards euthanasia. Last week the House of Commons debated assisted dying - and the debate was worrying.

In response James Mumford poses this scenario:

So let’s fast-forward to a world in which assisted dying is now an option. An 85-year-old grandmother, no longer able to look after herself, has received a diagnosis that she is terminally ill and has only a few months to live. Does she go into a fiendishly expensive nursing home which will exhaust her lifetime’s savings? Or does she bow out? No one in the family has said a word to her. Yet she feels a pressure – her decisions have been complicated by the possibility of assisted dying.

Eventually, she settles on assisted dying. She’s not escorted to the clinic with a son holding a gun to her head. No grandchild has attempted to manipulate her. No one has said anything to her, in fact, so no independent assessment panel will pick up on overt coercion.

And yet, who’s to say that what’s really going on is a grandmother choosing to die prematurely because she feels she has become a burden? Are we really okay with that?

You can find James’ post here. It is well worth reading in entirety.

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