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Started by Argie, July 13, 2010, 07:44:09 PM

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thanks for the empathy guys.    I think euthanasia it is a very important issue for atheists to discuss.  Yesterday a local legislature of one of the provinces (states) of my country sanctioned a law permitting people to refuse life prolonging medical treatments... that´s good news, but as always the catholics and other christians are challenging the law in a court and they might take it to the Suprme Court.  It may take some years before the new law can have full force, and there is the risk that it could be declared unconstitutional.


I think the turning point in allowing widespread assisted suicide is not far from coming as there are a lot more people living longer and dying of chronic (long term) degenerative illnesses like dementia, diabetes or some cancers. The pressure these people will bring to bear in years to come will have a significant impact on the legislation in this area either directly by lobbying for change before the need it or simply kill themselves and sod the consequences.
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
"Religion is a culture of faith; science is a culture of doubt." ― Richard P. Feynman
'It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it's called Life.' - Terry Pratchett
Remember, your inability to grasp science is not a valid argument against it.

Martin TK

Quote from: "Argie"Interesting thoughts people...they made me feel alittle bit less guilty.  In my case, my father, 73, is on the verge of death: he had suffered a massive ischemic stroke on march, and a month ago he was diagnosed with a brain tumor grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme.  Since the stroke he has lost his speech, ability to chew and swallow food, and is gradually loosing his motor functions (he doesn´t stand up anymore), doctors say its because of the advancing rate of the tumor.  He has no chance of recovery since doctors say they can´t do surgery on him, not even a biopsy (actually they could by they woudn´t because they say he would die on the OR due to his age and because he is on blood thinners, and they wouldn´t do chemotherapy or ray therapy because they say it would worsen his quality of life); he will just keep getting worse and worse loosing his functions and wits.  The neurologist diagnose said he had weeks to 6 month to a year left.  A cardiologist told me that if his heart is good, he could live up to five years because the tumor wont grow any bigger on a person of his age.  Now, I love my dad very dearly, but I just think it would be devastating to a person to live in such condition, just lying in bed all day with a little hose up your nose to get fed, wearing diapers, and no way of communicating by speech or by writing; specially since he already knows the diagnose, and knows what will be happening to him... he already saw himself loosing the abiliy to talk, eat, and now walk.  And like I said, I love him very dearly, but this is not the dad I knew, he is turning slowly into a vegetable; sometimes I have to remind him who am I, or remind him of people he knew.  Its just very sad to see him like that... the desire of him dying quickly and painlessly has came to my mind many times, and I kind of felt guilty of wishing my father´s death. Nothing that we could do to end his life with dignity here... the vast majority of doctors are against euthanasia, and it is a crime in our penal law system... but even if it was legal or court ruled, doctors would just disagree and refuse, just as they refused to perform a court mandated abortion some years ago.

My heart is with you, my friend.  My mother clung to life for years with very painful lung cancer, she begged for death, for "god" to take her.  She was only quiet when she was sleeping, which was usually NOT at night.  It was very stressful on everyone.  I hope you find peace soon and your father is able to rest.
"Ever since the 19th Century, Theologians have made an overwhelming case that the gospels are NOT reliable accounts of what happened in the history of the real world"   Richard Dawkins - The God Delusion


Euthanasia was legalized in the Netherlands in 2002. The law allows medical review board to suspend prosecution of doctors who performed euthanasia when each of the following conditions is fulfilled:

    * the patient's suffering is unbearable with no prospect of improvement
    * the patient's request for euthanasia must be voluntary and persist over time (the request cannot be granted when under the influence of others, psychological illness or drugs)
    * the patient must be fully aware of his/her condition, prospects and options
    * there must be consultation with at least one other independent doctor who needs to confirm the conditions mentioned above
    * the death must be carried out in a medically appropriate fashion by the doctor or patient, in which case the doctor must be present
    * the patient is at least 12 years old (patients between 12 and 16 years of age require the consent of their parents)

Under current Dutch law, euthanasia by doctors is only legal in cases of "hopeless and unbearable" suffering. In February 2010 a citizens' initiative called "Out of Free Will" further demanded that all Dutch people over 70 who feel tired of life should have the right to professional help in ending it. The organization started collecting signatures in support of this proposed change in Dutch legislation. A number of prominent Dutch citizens supported the initiative, including former ministers and artists, legal scholars and physicians.
The universe never did make sense; I suspect it was built on government contract.
Robert A. Heinlein


Personally, I feel that Euthanasia should be legalized.Reasons being that when terminally ill patients are dying a slow,painful death, instead of simply letting them go through all that Suffering, why not just allow euthanasia to induce a quick.This not only benefits the patient by ending his/her misery, but also lessens the burdens on the patients families.