Right to die
Yesterday’s verdict that Tony Nicklinson will not be allowed to die with the help of doctors is depressing indeed for Nicklinson but unsurprising. Death is the last taboo of a society too focused on preserving life at any cost.
A man is suffering and needs help. The treatment is easily administered and has almost guaranteed success. We watch, and sympathise, and discuss at length the shame and the shock of his situation, how we couldn’t imagine his pain. But we do nothing.
Disability rights campaigners have been quick to point out that the majority of media coverage around the Right to Die debate has been pro-assisted death. Certainly I’ve yet to see a television documentary to adequately give a voice to people on both sides of the debate. Therefore, both as a disabled person and a stand-up comedian, I was really disappointed by Doug Stanhope this week for heaping abuse onto journalist Allison Pearson and campaigner Nicki Clark for daring to disagree with the pro-assisted death stance.
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