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Another (Painful) Ethical Conundrum

Imagine that you’ve had a devastating stroke, one which left you completely paralyzed, yet in full control of your mental capacity. You are a prisoner in your own body, completely dependent on others for your own sustenance and life.

And you have 20 or more years of this to look forward to.

Such is the case of Tony Nicklinson, a (now former) businessman who, at age 51, suffered exactly that catastrophic event, and has now asked a court for permission to end his own life.

Of course, being completely paralyzed means that he’ll need some help with that, which is why the law’s involved in the first place. That this scenario is being played out in England is, of course, excruciatingly ironic; after all, the MVNHS© itself seems to have little problem killing off less cumbersome patients.

In the event, the British High Court has denied his request, sentencing him to another few decades of suffering. The court’s reasoning is that, because he’s not terminally ill, “it would be wrong ‘for the court to depart from the long established position that voluntary euthanasia is murder, however understandable the motives may be…’”

One wonders whether this is a valid point….

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