By: Being Local
Death with Dignity Bill – Should the terminally ill be allowed to choose when they want to die?
For many, death is an uncomfortable subject to talk about. But, with the recent ‘Death with Dignity’ bill passing through the House and Senate earlier this year, the subject has taken center stage.
My mother died after a 10+ year long battle with dementia and alzheimer’s, my brother passed after a long battle with cancer and my 31-year-old niece was gone after a little more than a year battling colon cancer. It was heartbreaking to watch. While my mother would not have qualified for physician assisted suicide under the current Hawaii bill, I often wonder if my other two family members would’ve chosen a less painful way to leave this world.
So, the question remains. Should the terminally ill be allowed to choose when, where and how they would like to die? I say absolutely yes!
According to the current bill, HB 2739, people who have been given less than six months to live will have the option of prescription drugs that will allow them to die when, where and how they would like. They would have to give two verbal consents at least 12 days apart and also provide written consent. The process would have to be overseen by two doctors and the patient would have the right to change their mind at any time.
When the pain is too much, and the end is inevitable, how can we not allow people the choice? If you’ve ever seen someone you love in the end days terminal illness, you get to a point where you wish mercy on them and hope that the suffering ends.
Read this story about the beautiful way that this 41-year-old ALS sufferer planned her departure.
Opponents of the bill argue that the whole thing is morally wrong and that it puts terminally ill patients in danger of being manipulated by people close to them for monetary gain.
So as the bill moves its way towards becoming a law, the topic continues to be a very polarizing one.
What are your thoughts on the Death with Dignity bill?