Editor, The News:
There was a cartoon on the opinion page recently, where the cartoonist made fun of the “slippery slope” of assisted suicide.
I am deeply troubled by the lack of common sense of something that is very real. I saw a documentary about a Dutch man who signed a final will, saying that he wanted his wife to help him with assisted suicide when his quality of life deteriorated below a certain level.
So then he became old and bedridden with dementia. It was so bad that he could not even speak any more.
He could shake his head, though. So the wife says that she wants to carry out the assisted suicide.
Then the doctor asks the man if he wants to die. So this man shakes his head. He cannot talk, but the doctor repeatedly asks him if he wants to die and every time he shakes his head.
So he had a change of mind.
But there is a problem now because the wife insists that his life quality is at that stage and he would have wanted to commit assisted suicide.
So what now? Do they put the man down? Is this the slippery slope you made fun of?
Let’s assume we institute assisted suicide here and at first there needs to be a written consent from the person to carry out that request.
Then we ‘slide,’ and say, ‘no, we don’t require a written consent, an oral consent is good enough.
Then I make friends with a person and we go out for a beer and coffee for a few times.
He tells me he discovered an abnormal growth that is very painful and shows all the symptoms of cancer, and he does not want to fight it. He wants me to assist him with his suicide.
So I do.
Is this the slippery slope you made fun of?