Vermont to legalize assisted suicide (Video Report)

Featured Image: Euthanasia machine created by Dr Philip Nitschke (Australia). Four terminally-ill people chose to end their lives using this machine. It gave them a lethal dose of drugs after they answered “yes” to a series of questions on the lap-top screen. This procedure was legal in Australia’s Northern Territory between 1995 and 1997. SOURCE Wikipedia (Public Domain).

Photographed in the Science Museum, London, on 02-Jan-06

From youtube uploaded by RTAmerica on May 17, 2013


  1. queenslandcountrylady says:

    Much is said about people wanting to die with dignity, about people not wanting to endure pain when suffering life threatening conditions such as cancer, and about people should havethe right to end their own lives. Mostly these sentiments are expressed from a distance, meaning the thoughts are either in theory only, or spoken in fear of pain and suffering.
    Some time ago, I worked as a Nurse in the Palliative Care unit in Queensland.
    The experience was quite profound, and not at all how most people would perceive it to be.
    Some thoughts and observations about it:
    Dying is actually a very personal business.
    A person’s last weeks or days are most precious.
    Pain can be managed. It is not how a lot of people imagine. I think that is what most people are afraid of the most. “Unimaginable terrible pain and suffering” are the sentiments pedalled.
    Well, it doesn’t work like that. It simply is not like that at all.
    It is Correct Pain Management that is essential. Nobody wants to be “off their face” on too much morphine. To have one’s faculties clear and functional is most important for people.
    So not “too much” morphine is the aim.
    And not “too little” morphine is the other aim.
    There is essentially no need for people to have to experience undue pain at all.
    This element in pain management is severely misunderstood in my opinion.
    Correct pain management by people educated and experienced in Pain Management is essential.
    (I also witnessed a lovely elderly ex Registered Nurse who was absolutely terrified about all this excruciating pain she was expecting to have to go through with cancer. Every one said that’s how it was, and so she had believed it. She was so relieved and grateful when she learned about the correct pain management system. Not too much, not too little, just right. I believe she was happy to be in good and positive care for her final times. This lady loved learning things and this time was no exception!)
    Many people want to discuss death and dying and might there be “something after”
    In reality, people wanted to “hang on” for as long as possible.
    People in general want to “be prepared.” And they are grateful for help. “Have I forgotten anything?” become chief thoughts.
    The other matter I witnessed in the Palliative Care ward, was that no-one actually wanted to die. The atmosphere was interesting, uplifting and generally positive.
    I have witnessed people with unresolved family conflict issues, who were more disturbed by the hurt these family members could inflict. These “hurt” missiles included matters like hatred, vindictiveness, selfishness, anger. The
    person in my care generally instructed that these family members were not to be
    admitted as visitors, under any circumstances.

    In another ward, I witnessed a man admitted with a ruptured aortic aneurysm that surgical intervention could have resolved.
    This man was utterly insistent on no surgery. His prognosis was explained to him thoroughly.
    He was equally insistent that his very close family members neither try and intervene or visit or even be notified.
    I was not privy to his personal life at all, but did notice that any mention of his wife or children appeared to cause him great grief, even anger.
    (I had offered to contact his family so they would know, but was quickly admonished in no uncertain terms for same, together with a reminder that he expected to die in peace. That’s why he was here.)
    I have thought about this man in the intervening years, and wondered if his family was the cause of his grief.
    As I said this person was not in the palliative care ward, but a Surgical ward. I had the feeling this man wanted to die to escape some thing or other that had caused him great grief.
    For this reason, I do not think it entirely appropriate to compare him with those in
    palliative care with issues like cancer who are facing death.
    The reason I have mentioned this man here, is because I do wonder how many people who advocate death by suicide, or by Philip Nitschke type assistance, are actually wishing to escape family conflict, disappointment, selfishness, or
    loneliness, or a negativity that cannot be resolved? Or for those who do have cancer, have they not been informed of correct pain management?
    I would love to hear from other people such as myself. People who have dealt with this death and dying business first hand. It would be good to de-bunk the nonsense that is sprouted about death and dying and pain beyond comprehension. Ignorance or mismanaged pain medication, or a combination of both causes undue pain. This is not necessary. This is the type of nonsense that has allowed people like Philip Nitschke to get away with murder.
    I also wonder how much of this push for euthanasia is to do with money.
    Does someone stand to gain financially by the person who is being euthanized? Or is it simply playing on ignorance?
    All that aside, it is appointed once for a person to die. Why place that important appointment in the hands of a Doctor Death?

    • dgcrenshaw says:

      Hi Queenslandcountrylady;
      Thank you for a great detailed first hand experience dealing with death and your professional insight. I recently lost my step-father to lung disease. His last three weeks were spent at a facility under supervised pain-control. We feel he couldn’t have gone better. He was able to visit with family, joke, talk about old times, yet he felt little pain. I lost my wife to cancer in 1995 and it was the same with pain control by professionals. I, agree there should be fear of death, the pain can be controlled and the last days can actually be a joyful time. And after they are gone those memories will be something their loved ones will cherish until they leave this world..
      However, I do believe that a terminally ill person should have the choice without government involvement. It’s intrusive into a person’s private business, It’s not government’s business.

      Thanks again for great commentary, without a doubt your post will help someone, of that I’m positive.

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