Terry Pratchett: Choosing To Die

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Ratings: 8.62/10 from 53 users.

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Terry Pratchett: Choosing To DieIn a frank and personal documentary, author Sir Terry Pratchett considers how he might choose to end his life.

Diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2008, Terry wants to know whether he might be able to end his life before his disease takes over.

Traveling to the Dignitas Clinic in Switzerland, Terry witnesses first hand the procedures set out for assisted death, and confronts the point at which he would have to take the lethal drug.

Sir Terry Pratchett has made an emotional plea for the right to take his own life, saying: I live in hope I can jump before I am pushed.

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143 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Tara Foster

    wow.

  2. Tina Burton

    Very brave people.

  3. simon

    great doco considering I normally wouldn't watch this kind of thing. The husband was the bravest man I have ever seen

  4. Chad Marcum

    Hard to watch...luckily for us Terry is still kicking!

  5. Roman Ondrus

    Amazing! I have always been a supporter of Euthanasia (with proper laws and guidelines). This is an amazing documentary. Love it.

  6. Liam Reeves

    i cried watching the old man die, it was the most moving piece of film i've ever seen

  7. Pami Sleph Saavedra Masor

    Most amazing. I totally believe in the right to die with dignity.

  8. His Forever

    Absolutely NOT the way I plan to go. Exceedingly sad, but a very well done documentary nonetheless.

  9. Yasuhiro Usuba

    Amazing. I would love to move to Zurich and decide my fate when I die. It is a beautiful choice for those suffering from immense and unmeasurable pain.

  10. wald0

    I couldn't watch it all, I assume the guy did go ahead and go through with it though. This was hard to watch, that one guy was so young and seemed healthy at least for now. He said he was scared that he would get worse suddenly though and then not be able to even drink the poison or give consent without legal issues. Basically he is having to die a lot sooner than he would otherwise because there is a law against assisted death, now that is dark irony. The story the woman told about drinking wine with her husband and then singing with him at the time of his death was unbelievably beautiful. I can't think of a better way to go than singing peacefully with someone that I love.

    Keeping people alive on machines is more for us than it is for them. Besides, watching someone you love lose their dignity and go through horrible pain when you know they would rather end it is harder than watching them die really- at least it was for me. I know I will not let it happen to my dad, no matter where I have to take him or what I have to do. I owe him that much.

    Watching my grandfather go slowly and lose his mind almost destroyed my whole family, both mentally and financially. It also made me very frightened of death and old age, I don't want to be laying in my own waste crying in fear and confusion when the end comes. My grandfather would ask repeatedly to go to the bathroom, but when you got him up he would get angry and not know where you were taking him, then you get him back in bed and he would have an accident- now you have to get him cleaned up and the bed- it was horrible. He couldn't get one minute of peace. It was like he wanted to say things to people, maybe see certain things again before the end- but he could not hold a thought long enough to express it- all he could get out was "bathroom". It was ugly, and depressing, and not the way I would want to go. Yet the ladies from the hospice that came by once a day said that was normal, they see it all the time. It is sickening that we would make our loved ones go through that, sickening!!

  11. alnsxktn

    i found it most interesting, and i cried. the amazing part is those people who are suffering and find a way to perservere, those who find joy despite being debilitatingly ill. i believe in self determination and body autonomy. those people who choose to die before their illness completely disables them have the right to make that choice, however those who are "just" weary of life should be given counselling. no one should determine for another and yet, if one is not catastrophically ill then is depression actually a legitimate reason to be given the option of assisted death? i realize depression is an illness and 50 percent or thereabouts of sufferers die from it...but is it different from, say, ms?

  12. wald0

    I agree, depression should be treated. If the person is going to die and there is nothing that can be done, then assisted death should be an option. But, if there is any chance that they could recover or life could get better, we should offer treatment. I assumed the services in this doc were only available to those that had some kind of terminal illness.

  13. stephenkuemmel

    God, what a complicated issue,I dont know what to say.I do know however that i dont have the authority to say who's right or wrong.

    For that im grateful

  14. lexy677

    Yes I understand your feelings but I would like to tell you this: EVERYTHING happens for a reason. We all come into this life because we have karmic debts which we come here to pay and also to learn not to repeat the same transgressions against nature. These debts are paid in several forms; disease, maltreatment from others, poverty, ignominy...etc, etc. One cannot escape one's debts to nature by suicide. You will come back in another body and you will pay. So why not go through with it now and get it over with, rather than postponing the inevitable. Of course those who do not understand the purpose of life here on earth, and therefore do not accept what I am saying should be allowed to die when and how they choose.

  15. pulunco

    So true Waldo. My grandfather died of Alzheimer's. He lasted many years in a hospice, and of course he had no quality of life at all. Before his illness he was a very social happy person but he became someone else, he became scared, and helpless. He could not recognize his own family and was in constant pain.

    It never should have gone as far as it did, we need proper laws and guidelines to allow people to die when there is no hope left. I would never allow my dogs to suffer the way my grandfather did, things need to change.

  16. pulunco

    Those are YOUR beliefs, not everybody believes in karma, jesus, allah, vishnu, thor, etc etc. We need to stop imposing our silly beliefs and superstitions on to other people.

    So tell me if you were on fire and I were to walk by would you want me to help you or just say "ah let him burn, everything happens for a reason, he is just paying a karmic debt" ? You have strange logic my friend.

  17. eugler

    Apart from the fact that you apparently don't understand the concept of karma at least in the classical buddhist/hindu sense let me tell you this.

    My purpose in live is to find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow so I can buy a huge aquarium for my pet blue whale. Yours is not for me to tell but it doesn't seem to make much more sense.

    After seeing this bloke die in such an impressive way, I can only hope to go with a fracture of his dignity when my time eventually comes. Waldo was kind enough to share his own experience with someone he loved and of whose suffering he was part of. So don't go around and spill your childish arrogance here, judging other people by the "knowledge" of their "purpose" and whether they lived up to it. Regardless of your obvious ignorance of just about anything your jibberish is highly offensive so I suggest you shut it.

  18. Demeter's Daughter

    @Wald0: I've seen many of your outspoken comments here, and my emotions on this subject are as complex as yours and everyone else's, and as emotionally laden too. I would have preferred sending this privately but there was no option; I just wanted to thank you, because I had a similarly horrific situation that culminated in the death of the closest person in the world to me mere months ago. The lack of brain activity made me feel desperate to find a way to make them feel at ease before they went, which I knew was imminent.
    In the months since that death, I have agonized, even castigated myself for singing to this person before they died, in order to communicate, wishing I could have done more, fearing my conduct was improper, disrespectful to them, or worse.
    Even though I can't be "at peace" over this and think it would be ludicrous to expect anyone to be 100% at ease with losing a loved one, your outspokenness on this forum today, regarding the "singing woman" has given me some hope of some sort.
    Can't add much to the convo on this doc yet - not sure if I can watch it yet. I am very ill myself, and certain that most people value life whatever their stance is on this, though I think I'm somehow someone who'll "try to hang on as long as I can".*l*
    That being said, I also agree that it is horrible - and feels so wrong - to watch, or feel you have to watch - someone precious to you die a slow or painful death. I also relate to those who don't want life extended for others/ their own purposes, but only want the comfort of the patient considered. In fact, perhaps that is the only way I can phrase my feelings on assisted death at this time, as I'm so on the fence. I think it would be highly dangerous, though, to mix assisted death with patients with severe mental illness, including severe depression, which would be unfortunate for those with other serious illnesses, because it's all too possible - and often - that someone is physically and mentally ill at the same time!
    @ Everyone: I feel the only correct way though, that anyone can represent their philosophy well on this matter or any matter and to not completely invalidate their beliefs, is to be as respectful of each other on this forum as they purport to be of life, whatever their view. That complaint is NOT directed at Wald0 by the way! ;-) New to commenting and hope I didn't thread that together incorrectly.

  19. Bob King

    Great film. I also agree that one should be able to let go. with that said, this is pure ego. the idea that we, (who, or what ever "we" or "I" is), can control everything, including the end is odd. There is nothing I can say to those who do not agree, and that is fine. Just my view. zp

  20. Guest

    DEEPLY moving. And that Terry Pratchett seems like one hell of a decent human being. He has made himself a new fan in me, for sure. I had someone very close to me as well succumb to the long death of Alzheimer's, and it is a terrible thing for anyone to have to endure. In many ways, it may be worse on the loved ones who DON'T have it, than on the one afflicted... Having to watch the memories and affections of a lifetime stripped away from someone you love doesn't get any easier as the disease progresses. In fact, there gets to be a lot of ( usually ) suppressed anger involved for everybody, as the unfairness of it sinks in a little bit more every day. I mean, what kind of a monstrosity is it that a person should have to slowly lose everything they've acquired, during a time of life when they should best be able to enjoy it ? The whole thing finally just gets to be almost impossible to deal with in every respect... I watched it debilitate my grandmother for almost 15 years before she found peace, and the effect on my grandfather was devastating in every way you can think of... emotionally, financially, even professionally, as it ended up indirectly costing him his career. When the time comes for Sir Terry to make his choice, I know I wouldn't fault him for taking the poison one little bit.

  21. Gamini Perera

    Well let me put it this way.Can one ,decide a birth,or can anybody just reject a life simply for a sickness??Can you define "my self",as I have no control over anything on my body to my desire?? The real dignity is live and die as a human being, not just merely some where some body is waiting to take your precious gift by just inventing a painless dope!!!This can not be called as an advancement of modern science.

  22. Mat Gregory

    Thank you for this Terry. Thank you for this Vlatko. I'm lost for words.

  23. Mircea Bordeianu

    I Really cried after this film although I was looking it in segment. Even though I paused before the end intake - it still shocked me. However one thought does not live me. Indeed the husband was most of brave. Now I wonder, without trying to make anyone guilty. If the wife wouldn't be so determined. If she would say that she will care after him until the end would he still do it. For my self, I would never have the courage to "help" anyone committing suicide even through saying that I accept this way. I would of cause not oppose it but to my close one I would say that I should they decide to stay I would bring my burden until the end. However I myself for myself do not exclude the possibility once to want to leave and to do it soon enough in order to leave with dignity. I hope you can assimilate this contradiction. So, don't you think that even quiet consent for "leave" is a complicity ? Therefore I wish to express my respect to the wife of Sir Terry. I wish I know more about her.

    P.S. As I sad, I am not blaming, just sharing thoughts and listening in order to make my decisions.

  24. BetsMcGee

    my mother died from cancer, within a year it had spread to her spine, lungs, kidneys and liver. the pain got so severe that the last 4 months of her life were little more then a drug induced coma, visiting her became more to console my father who spent every second he could at her bedside, i had lost all hope to catch her when she was awake by this point, I wonder what humanity there is that kind of needless suffering, it's humbling that in the brief periods that she was awake in those final months that she still had the spirit to laugh and make jokes even when it was apparent that all hope was lost. my mother was beautiful woman who i loved dearly and she did not deserve to have her life end torture and torment simply because a warped sense of moral righteousness that says a few brief moments of suffering plaid through a drug addled coma is more fitting an end then having A CHOICE .....

  25. lexy677

    Pulunco, I couldn't help laughing at your "if I were on fire" analogy. You completely misunderstand.....however disbelief does not negate reality. When the time comes you will know.

  26. John_St_John

    Last time I saw my Grandmother Markel alive she had forgotten that she had been married to my grandfather for 67 years or that she even had had two daughters. Only reason she even recognized me for a lucid moment was a comment about Howdy Doody's side kick Stoney Burke. As I left her that day she begged me to never go back, she knew then that she was dieing mentally and that "she" would soon be gone. I honored that wish but damn if it still does not hurt as bad today as it did then.

    Grandmother Markel died physically in 1998 after Alzheimer's stripped her of her mind in 1992. Where is the compassion in keeping a corpse alive? Not trying to offend here but damn, if you want to see real zombies go to an Alzheimer care ward. Flesh automatons wandering, or not, aimlessly; waiting for their next meal.

  27. eugler

    Well, let's see. I was a little emotional after watching this doc yesterday. And I have a soft spot for people who manage to be condescending and stupid at the same time so you really got me going. Saying that people deserve their suffering and implying that they just too stupid to realise it - a kind of suffering you obviously don't know anything about whence your patronizing attitude - is disgusting. Your New Age wuwu version of the Samsara augments this impression. I wouldn't have been pissed of if you at least had presented your thesis as your personal belief, yet, according to you, it's a fact.

    And you manage to go on like that. With your pathetic namecalling you clearly identify yourself as exactly the "frightened bitch hiding behind a computer" you were talking about. I'm not British by the way and this is not my first language so thanks. I guess a wise man in posession of such great knowledge as yourself will forgive the ocasional spelling mistake. In case you have any more racist comments keep them to yourself, your posts are already poor enough as it is.

    But let's make peace, the way I see it there are two ways it's gonna play out for you. We all have a good chance of eventually aquiring a sickness that gives us time to languish slowly towards death. So if you are right, the bad karma you are picking up by condescendingly looking down on the suffering of others who "didn't get it" will cause you to meet a similar fate. In that case I hope you will enjoy the pain and helplessness to the fullest since it is as you put it well deserved and there is no way around it anyway, right? The other possibility is that your twisted ideas about reincarnation are bs and you just have the same 50:50ish chance of dying miserably as the rest of us. Which one you wish for to be true is up to you. Namaste baba

  28. Earthwinger

    I found this both very difficult to watch, and utterly compelling at the same time. As a child, I watched my grandmother endure a long and painful death, and to this day, I still weep for her when I think back to it. It's my view that no one who is able to make an informed decision, should have to suffer a painful or protracted death in this day and age.

    @ Lexy - It was only a few days ago that you apologised for your xenophobic slurs elsewhere on this site, so I think it's a shame that you feel compelled to do it again. You don't like the English, you've already made that abundantly clear, but unwarranted venting of your spleen, on the matter, is never going to be conducive to healthy or constructive debate.

  29. marcosanthonytoledo

    My father had Alzheimer's when he died of a heart attack in 2004 he was 83 years old my mother five years later when she was 86 when she died she had Dementia. So there is a possibility I can become affected either soon since I am in my early 60s a powerful documentary.

  30. princesspatricia

    Cold, calculated and extremely dark. Choosing to DIE is a very "Fitting" title for this horrific display.

  31. pulunco

    Lexy667 Sorry but you hold BELIEFS regarding karma, it may not be reality. If you believe in something (like karma) it does not support the reality of it. Believing does not make it so. Just like disbelief does not negate reality. And your main arguement is "when the time comes you will know". Is that it? Is that the show stopper in your logic? The fact is you believe in karma, most rational people don't. You still have strange logic my friend.

    Oh I like how you insulted euglar by saying "The fact that you do not share my beliefs does not justify your hostility" and then you proceed to be hostile towards him. LOL

  32. Thomas S. Williams

    I agree with Terry that a person shouldn't need to be wealthy to be able to chose a decent end to their life, terminal illness of not. One alternate way to quietly end one's suffering that I have not seen discussed is "voluntary refusal of food and fluids" which just takes determination.

  33. pocketmeadowfarm

    Yes. My mother died from Alzheimers after being diagnosed for, I don't know, about 15 years. Pretty horrible way to go, and it has strongly informed my feelings about this issue. I am not going to become an empty shell.

  34. AlfBeta

    My own view, about myself, not anyone else, is that I am almost completely opposed to deliberately killing a person, and I don't exclude myself. But I haven't arrived at a situation extreme enough to test that view!

  35. Masoud Barekzi

    When you have a good health that's you're money power and everything for you
    without good health all the money and power is worthless.

    these people who wanna die because they have a bad illness they're very selfish, very weak in heart and weak in spirit we humans we don't have to enjoy every moment of life we all should die in natural way. When a man is alive he should try to live to its last breath whether in pain or happiness.

    If you're finger hurts or you're finger is in a bad pain do you just go and cut you're hand off ?

    If you're body and you're brain is in pain do you take you're life away ?

    We should apparetaite life like we just born.

  36. Masoud Barekzi

    why did they banned me from commenting in this site ??????????
    01bad2dbone

  37. pulunco

    You are right about health being the most important part of life.

    In some cases when a person is definitely going to die and is in agony then euthanasia is necessary. That person should have full autonomy over his own existance and should be allowed to choose to die when all other possibilities are extinguished.

    Your personal belief should not dictate what others should do.

    I wonder if you would change your mind if you were on your death bed, in extreme agony 24 hours a day with no relief in sight. Quality of life is as important as quantity of life.

    Don't call these people weak. They are reasonable and brave. Put yourself in thier shoes.

  38. lexy677

    Pulunco,
    You should have read "eugler's" initial response to my comment before accusing me of hostility towards him. Anyhow, look I can give perfectly rational arguments for "karma" and "reincarnation". The problem is, it will
    take too much of my time and energy....and it is obvious that you are not even open to correction if I gave you the most airtight arguments. You come across just as "materialist" and probably as dogmatic as those who believe in the bible, jesus christ as God, etc.......so why would I waste my time trying to convince you?.....hence my statement: "You will know".....in due course. It is not my place or my duty to try to convince you of anything.

  39. pulunco

    It may not be your place or your duty to convince me, but it is most certainly beyond your ability to rationally demonstrate the probability of karma to me or any other rational person.

    Karma is a naive, irrational viewpoint. As long as we assume there is a supreme being or magical force that will somehow moderate justice, we fail to take responsibility for ensuring that justice is served. Superstitious, new age backward thinking like yours is not helping humanity.

  40. Adam Charteris

    Everyone is entitled to their beliefs. However this does not mean that anyone or any society should force their morality upon another individual. Above all else, the most prized possession of any individual is his or her own life. Thus the jurisdiction over a life remains with the person it belongs to. While I personally cannot say I would end my own life, I find it absolutely appalling that anybody would advocate making this decision for someone else. How can you relegate another human being to months of agony and misery when you cannot experience any of it yourself? What puts you or society in a position to decide for them when you do not have to endure any of their suffering? The answer is nothing. Nobody has any rationally valid argument to propose dominion and control over another persons body. To suggest so is to wander into the realm of personal beliefs which are at times not based in sound logic.

    This is not just concerning those dying or severely handicapped, even those who are just tired of living should be allowed to end their life peacefully if judged to be of sound mind and given numerous opportunities to change their mind before finally ending it.

  41. Guest

    Thank you for sharing that. Your mother sounds like she was extremely brave in her own right.

  42. lexy677

    You see, I was right. You are already certain that I couldn't possibly demonstrate the probability of karma to you or any rational person..so you see?.. whatever I say will make no difference. First of all, I personally couldn't possibly demostrate the probability of Einstein's theory
    of relativity to you or anybody else but that does not make that theory irrational.

    Secondly the concept "karma" does not preclude taking reponsibility for ensuring justice in the world. However if you are an atheist(which I suspect you are) then of course the concept of Karma is all "new age gibberish". Otherwise,you need to correctly understand the concept of Karma.... not the popular erroneous notions about
    "karma" floating around. When you truly understand it, everything else will fall into place. For now as I said, you will surely "know" in time...in time. Your atheism not withstanding.

    Two children are born today; one is born in the slums of Bangladesh...with all the future misery that might entail and another is born in Buckingham palace.....you think thats just pure chance eh?..coincidence right?... Of
    course if you do not think that there is a just "God" and that human beings are just an accident of nature....then sure, for you its pure coincidence.

  43. wald0

    Obviously you have never seen someone die from starvation or dehydration, it is extremely painful and ugly. Not a quite peaceful way to end things. As far as your assertion that suicides should also be assisted, I disagree. People that do not have a terminal illness nor debilitating pain have a decent chance of getting better, no matter how many times they have tried and failed. I personally knew someone that was suicidal for over ten years and saw countless doctors, but now they live a happy life full of joy and even have grandchildren. They admit themselves that dieing then would have been a huge mistake. Now I don't know about you but I don't want to ever know that we helped someone die that may have wanted to live in the future if only given enough time. Besides what kind of precedence are we setting we start telling people that its o.k. to kill your self simply because you are depressed or weary of life. If you give people an easy way out they will take it, almost without exception.

  44. wald0

    Your objections wouldn't have anything to do with your strong christian beliefs would it?

  45. Guest

    Once sick people are allowed to decide their own deaths then what do you do with the influence some have over their old parents and specially when you feel that the attention is financially just a bit in a hurry to get it over with?
    The cost of "home stay" is very high for Alzhiemer patient (who have money) and we all know it is of no-return although one can possibly stay there for years until death comes.
    I think society does not allow the right to die because society does not trust "some of the ones" that would make the decisions.
    We are all "tired" of living at times even for short periods for some. Many people would chose to die in time of depression.
    It is a difficult subject to RULE.
    _____/)___/)______./¯"""/')
    ¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯¯)¯¯)¯¯¯'_„„„„

    az

  46. wald0

    Wow, I can't imagine someone trying to talk their mom or dad into dieing so they wouldn't have to pay for their care. That makes me sick, and angry- very angry. I suppose I feel this way because I have had such good parents though, and am currently paying for their home care as well as living with them to make sure they are well taken care of. It costs a fortune and I have NO life of mine own anymore (I haven't been on a date in over two years)- but it is worth that and a lot more really. I would give everything I have or will ever have to spend one more minute with them, and I feel sorry for anyone that doesn't feel that way about their parents. Not that it is their fault if they don't necessarily, just that it is sad because that is such a huge part of life and love. I can't imagine never having it.

  47. annggy

    My mother was strugling with cancer for 10 years. I was barelly 15, but quite a mature one, when she firts asked me, if I would help her to die when the time comes. The first time I had no answer. Couple of years later she asked again and I said yes. We even discussed going to Switzerland during her last year. But she never lost hope, so no serious stepes were made. During her last week in hospital, when she would here and there wake up, she would talk about the things she want's to do when she gets home. And yes, she was suffering beyond words. Watching this and remembering the way it was at the end, I wish she would have asked for help, cause no living being on this earth deserves to go through pain like that. I wish that every mans death could be as peaceful.

  48. wald0

    I am so sorry you had to go through that, I hope you have peace now.

  49. wald0

    Those are your personal beliefs, not facts. You think everything happens for a reason, but you don't know that. You think we are reincarnated with karmic debt and so forth, I don't and neither did my grandfather. We had/have just as much right to our opinions and just as much proof to back them up as you have for yours. So, if you are trying to say, "Hey, this is what I believe." fine- it has been noted. But if you are trying to say he shouldn't have the right to ask for assisted death because you and some other people believe this or that- well I think you see how ridiculous that is.

    By the way, you tell someone below that when the time comes they will know you were right. What time? if you believe in reincarnation then they are simply reborn just as they were before this life, with no knowledge of the previous lives obviously. Or do you mean that once his spirit attains enlightenment it will be released from the cycle and then know you were right. If that is the case do you really think at that point he is going to be thinking about this conversation and the fact that you were right, would you really want him to be thinking about that? If your whole karma theory is correct then it seems you might have a few more lives to go through before you reach enlightenment.

  50. Masoud Barekzi

    there is no i was expressing my opinion

  51. Masoud Barekzi

    we all going gonna go definitely we dont have to make the choice for it when time is up thats its up. what meant was who ever wants die at any sitution there in they're weak that means they cant handle no pain and no suffring so they decide ahh its too much for i wanna die. If any one wants die theres lots of ways to go kill youre self ex stick a knife into youre heart. dont get anyone else involved if you wanna die at youre own choice.

  52. John_St_John

    At least you are honest with yourself about that view point being changeable due to circumstances. I hope for your sake you never have to make that decision.

  53. John_St_John

    I know my son's children are wishing their daddy had not chosen to end his life just because life got difficult. I know I sure wish he hadn't. Thing is though, suicide induced by depression is a fateful decision that is made when ones spirit is crushed by outside circumstances as well as those inside the mind that seem insurmountable. Suicide for those reasons are no reason to make it available.

    Assisted suicide for the terminally ill is another can of worms though. I know I do not want to live out my life as a husk laid out in a bed in a colorless room on a silent floor in an unassuming building. Tucked silently away as big pharma and the health insurance industry bleed my family dry in the vain exercise of keeping a walking dead man alive.

  54. pulunco

    If you put forth a sound logical argument that concluded that karma was possible then of course I would believe it. How could I not? I just think you lack the ability to postulate such an argument. You have utterly failed at even comming close to proving your "karmic" beliefs.

    And to answer your question about two kids born in different environments. I would have to answer "yup" its chance. It is more parsimonious and makes more sense than some god or karma in the sky deciding our fate.

    If you want to believe in god, karma or the fairy god mother go ahead but keep your superstitions out of legislation.

  55. Matt Kukowski

    I know non of these old people, but cry I did.

  56. Guest

    I think the objections here COULD have as much to do with the innate revulsion for taking a human life, which is a central part of the problem with euthanasia, as they could have to do with some religious basis. I'm pretty confident that when we were roaming around Africa, long before there was any such thing as organized religion, this would still not have been an easy issue for us, if presented as something to be managed on a community-wide scale... We are social animals, and part of the way we maintain our sense of value about ourselves is predicated upon our also valuing the lives of others. Thus euthanasia seems to me like something that will always be difficult on a personal level, irrespective of time, place, or religious belief of any stripe. It is a firm sign of a natural morality in us that ultimately does not hinge upon the supernatural, because the act of it is so clearly not JUST a matter of faith for the rest who must be witness to it in some way: The person is in FACT dead, wherever they may be said to go afterwards, and, whatever the justified need to relieve suffering, that is always going to bother us in the deepest part of our humanity.

  57. TestTickle

    i think it might be 'selfish' to take your own life if people are dependent on you, but not selfish if you are dependent on other people. if you are in pain and your life is not bringing you any joy and you are require constant care, i dont think there is any selfishness in deciding that it is time to end your life. there is no courage in staying alive just to breath while you drain everyone around you.

  58. AlfBeta

    The potential involvement of governments - with their habit of outsourcing to Blackwater etc etc, and the solid white supremacy ethic in robust health in the back room in, at least u.s. and australian* contexts is a real worry.
    (the only place to pass legal euthanasia in australia -later struck out by FedGov- happened to be Northern Territory, which has the highest percentage of indigenous people, many of whom use expensive dialysis, and more who need it.)
    In short, legal bureaucratically centralised euthanasia processing system makes me nervous! And the current zeitgeist of power knows no other way of doing anything, I think.
    *For example, indigenous people in N.T. still experience court appearances and convictions conducted in a foreign language, with no translator provided.

  59. TestTickle

    i'm glad to know that places such as this exist to give people an option to end their pain. they can choose to end their lives with dignity, with their loved ones, and without prolonged suffering on everyone's part. making people ashamed of their choice and forcing them to endure a protracted death seems cruel and inhumane to me.

  60. Guest

    @Waldo, i agree with you.
    I think in the end "we tend" to treat our parents the way we were treated as children. As we age we do end up being like kids in certain ways, we become our kid's kids.
    Both my parents are alive, together, independent from medical care and kicking and love making (they both love to brag about that a little) still at 76.
    I would gladly live near or with them in the last few years of their life if it was necessary. But for now they spend their days playing petancle, going fishing, hunting, traveling, having parties with friends (many non prof. musicians and singers), sometimes i think they have more fun than i do.
    az

  61. leonardobdas

    I can't help myself but to think Pratchet's desire to plan his death to be foolish. "oh I will likely not be able to write anymore, therefore I need to die'. Quite a way to make his wife and family suffer prematurely with a death obsession. I am fairly certain she would instinctively take care of him and I don't think that is enough of a motive. I know it is judgmental of me to say this by the way.

    I think this works great for wealthy intelectual areligious citizens residing in rich countries, and it is best if kept there....marginal and nested in the Swiss alps. Really, what a logical step for the Swiss and their perfect lives...

    But, there is no way to know its unintended consequences if this goes mainstream (and we know it won't as long as the church is involved in large countries with large grey collar populations). I know someone who has an aneurysm and is confined to a wheel chair with limited mobility and speech. I am pretty sure that if it wasn't for family care and antidepressants, she would take the option to kill herself if available. Imagine in countries with ultra independent individuals, abandoning the diseaded and even plotting ways to kill them faster, even if it was just some persuasive arguments.

    Another of my worries here is that by virtue of its availability, people would simply give up fighting naturally faster because they see that option at the end of the tunnel as a viable one.

    Another potential unintended consequence is that it could slows down development of technology since people would be, by killing themselves while carrying important information, reducing the pool of available scientic material if you know what I mean.

  62. leonardobdas

    I agree there. I can imagine people experiencing a sort of rational empathic detachment, not unlike nazi soldiers really. People's family would convince themselves by reading a list of pros and cons that assisted suicide would be a better option and as a group end up creating that decision without realizing it.

  63. leonardobdas

    Waldo, I thought you would have not such a good relationship with parents being that you have talked about them being very christian and obviously have completelly points of view. How do you manage to accept that? Was it a process?

  64. AOD

    I can't watch this. I respect the decision of terminally ill persons to end their life on their terms, not in pain and fear and no control of their own body... but at the same time, I remember how reading Unseen Academicals was one of the few things that made me feel anything positive when I was hospitalized in the wake of my own suicide attempt. So when it comes to Pratchett... I just can't.

  65. JohnMND

    wow a lot of comments here from people all about their ideas and beliefs. I have recently been diagnosed with MND (in the USA it is commonly refered to as ALS). what this means is I will slowly lose the use of my body as the muscles stop working and basically die. I have nearly lost the use of my arms. I can lift a cup of tea using both for a short while, but it will get worse and soon I wont be able to use them at all, although there is no knowing when that will happen. My right leg is starting to give me problems and I will eventually end up in a wheel chair. I will eventually be able to do nothing at all, not even swallow. Food will be fed into my gut by a tube. Someone will have to take me to the toilet and wipe my arse! something I am not looking forward to at all, although I try to joke about this with my family; all of whom say they are here to help if I need it. My brain will function 100% so I will fully understand what is happening to me but I will probably lose any ability to communicate. Do I want to die? NO, at least not yet; the question is will I want to die sometime in the future before I get too bad?? possibly who knows. Imagine yourself in that position, would you want to live.
    Now put into the equation, I am 50 years of age, I have a wife and a young son aged 9. Do I want to see my son grow up and get married and have kids of his own? Obviously YES. Will I? probably not. Do I want my wife to spend every living moment looking after me, NO. Do I want all the money and investments I have made for my sons future spent on me, NO. Otherwise all the time I spent away from them and all the chances I took to get this for my son was a waste of time. Do I think my son would rather I lived, YES. Do I think my son would want me to live as an object that cannot move, talk or communicate with him at all, probably not, why would he? I will basically be just a body in a chair that he walks by every day and talks to (if I am lucky) with no way of knowing what I would love to say back to him.

    Now before some of you come back with the technology thing like Steven Hawkins has, that sort of thing costs a hell of a lot of money and even then it does not work for everyone as this disease affects each person differently. Some die within months of prognosis, some die many years later. I am lucky in some ways as it is progressing relatively slowly at the moment; however, this could also change.
    There is no right/clear answer to this debate. The things that everyone talks about are abovious; depression affects the decision as does family commitments. there are aslo questions regarding the government/medical/moral commitment for dealing with these problems. medical intervention costs a lot of money. Governements do not have a limitless pit. moral questions rise regarding the issue of suicide and also the requirement to look after the ill and helpless of society. These sort of things are noted in newspapers every day.
    The argument is not for a governement centralised euthanasia, rather the argument is for the individual to choose. there will be safe guards, such as doctors/psychiatrists checking that the individual has chosen and not been bullied into this position. Will this be abused? of course it will, by some. There is always someone out there who will try to encourage their parents to go early so they get the inheritance! But the same can be said for every law today.
    As for giving up or not being able to stand the pain as someone said.. I wont be in pain, I will just be lying, sitting, or whatever position I have been placed in. Similar to locked in syndrome. I will have a fully functioning brain but will be able to do absoloutely nothing!!!! try to imagine that for months on end, perhaps years.... would you want to live? of course at that stage I won't be able to tell anyone what I want!!! I will feel pain, I will feel, hear and see everything.
    Will my wife and son suffer more watching me and spending their whole life looking after me than they would if I just died and they could try to get on with their lives...probably, at least that is what I think. It is not like I will be a good father or husband any more, I will just be the guy in the room on a chair that never talks or reacts to either of them...

    So as I said, there are no easy asnwers, no right way to deal with this, except perhaps let the indiviual that it is happening to make some decisions. I am sure if they have any family, they will be a priority when he is waying up his thoughts.

  66. Brandon Schultz

    This doc is making me cry and I'm at the very beginning. The Right to Die is, in my opinion, one of the markers of a truly civilized society.

  67. Masoud Barekzi

    Well all the best for you i hope that a mircale will happen so you get better.
    If i was in youre sitution i wouldn't want to die beaucse of your're son at least he will see you everyday and say thats my dad god forbid if the day comes that only youre brain works at least you see him everyday what he dose and i think thats better then not being there to see him.

  68. Earthwinger

    Regarding your point about the cost of tech based aids. I think that it's worth bearing in mind that the tech world moves very quickly, and the cost of technology is always falling. There are lots of different computer solutions out there to help people now, and they are getting better and more affordable all the time. There's at least one charity that I know of in the UK, that works on helping people who would otherwise struggle to use computers, called AbilityNet, and there's probably more out there. So I think there's some hope in that regard, and it will only get better in the coming years.

  69. Angelica Guerrero

    Thank you for posting this! I've been wanting to watch it.

  70. anneveasey

    I watched this when it was first broadcast by the BBC - good for them - and Sir Terry and the Smedleys - how brave of them as well! I've been waiting to see if it would be shown somewhere on the Internet. Thank you!!

  71. Ned Jibreen

    In my view this is part of a deformed culture. This will to share your utmost glory of suicide to the public is not only disturbing but shows levels ignorance and deafetism I did not think I'd witness in my lifetime.

    It must be pointed out that there are people who aren't easily fooled by these subliminal messages Terry Pratchet is trying to induce. Everyone at some point in there lives wants to die even for a second; its mostly accompanied with states of depression; once they succeed in keeping you thinking about suicide more, then they've achieved what they wanted; call it the loss of hope mentality, the mentality that will end the human race or just shrink us a considerable size.

    Whats strikes me in this documentary is the constant asking of the questions "Who owns our bodies?" then continuing scenes as if nothing happened. It does not take a genius to point out that this is all from the Atheism/Liberalist movement. Go ahead and shoot yourself, but put ideas in other peoples heads? What sick level have you come to? Do animals infatuate about committing suicide? Its kind of funny, some people are ready to let others take there lives away but if it had a direct consequence on theres they'd reject it directly. #GREED

  72. rezartsy .

    wow this was amazing. i think that its such a privilege to be able to know the time of death, that way all that needs to be said is spoken and the family and friends are at peace a little sooner. i can understand their situation and if a family memeber or friend wished this upon him/herself, id be as ok as i could ever be with their decision.

  73. Guest

    @TestTickle
    What do you think of Sir Cumcision(an other doc)?
    az

  74. MkInTO

    Thought-provoking. I've loved Terry's books for a long time, now the man himself makes me just stare in awe. Well presented, touching, thought-provoking. I don't know what choice I would make, either, but, like Terry, I definitely want the right to choose.

  75. Ryan Bargiel

    Great Insight! I give praise to the 2 escorts from Dignitas Clinic at the end. The countless eyes they must stare into and see the persons spirit diminish.
    Truely brave.

    @ wald0 :
    How do your parents feel about you not leading a life of your own?
    (my parents have always told me, not to let them burden my life , of course a generalisation.)

    I know it means alot to you, for you to take care of them.
    Down deep, is it like you feel you have to repay somewhat of a 'debt'. As they have raised you?
    Respect for your parents is one thing. But sacrificng a life they gave you wasnt their intention. Life goes on, the world turns.

  76. shannon bitzer

    Hmm.. that actually made me a bit teary eyed, but also left an impression upon me that reminds me how much I love my family. To all that read this, hold your loved ones close

  77. shannon bitzer

    Also though, I almost forgot to ask. How much does something like this cost?? I feel as though it may be pricy. Which actually would seem a bit unfair to me.

  78. ZarathustraSpeaks

    Could someone explain to me how any person, group or government has any right or responsibility to tell any individual how or when their life should end? Please leave out your personal beliefs, I am talking about any real authority in this decision other than that of the individual. Is there any more personal question than when is life is not worth the "cost" of living?

  79. Enigma

    Just remember that slaves have no rights. They just make you believe in the illusion that your free. So weather its taxes or death you have no rights to decide your endgame. THEY decide your endgame.

  80. Andreas Luneborg

    Good one. I'm all for it, except if it was up to me, I would want a lethal opium dose. Pipe and my loved ones.

    Here in Norway where healthcare is free and top notch. We often have the debate around just how long one shall have to be keep artificially alive during old age. It's always the religious wing that has the moral higher stance. Doctor willing to give active death help, is unable to do so because the ethic regime set by our Christian roots.

    Just look to Japan.

  81. Mayo0o

    He stated in the Documentary 10,000 Pounds.

  82. dave.eggermont

    you sound like a dead body twitching

  83. dave.eggermont

    you sound a bit paranoid.. check a doctor please

  84. dave.eggermont

    We all know there is no right way to die, but let people at least have the right to die at their own terms. I'm all in favor for responsible and free deaths, feelings will get hurt anyway, why prolong it? In the end it might be the less selfish way to go.

  85. dave.eggermont

    You sound like one of them.

  86. dave.eggermont

    You talk like a child who hasn't even had the slightest experience with pain. If you know nothing about something, it is better to listen than to speak.

  87. dave.eggermont

    It is more selfish to cling to life when you are nothing but a burden to the ones around you. It is degrading to ask of them to keep you alive as if you were a picture of something you once were. You want to talk about selfishness? Think about it for a second before you start your "pro-life" propaganda.

  88. dave.eggermont

    When we meet someone who choses to die, we feel helpless, not only because of the awareness of the personal loss, but also by their judgment that some lives are not worth having and we fear that we one day might end up making that same evaluation. This is the only reason why I feel bad.
    I am glad however that they could go on their own terms, and when I imagine how Hugo Claus went, you could tell from his wife that it was worth it.

  89. dixie.rose.filloy

    Wow.

  90. Gideon Cordover

    Remarkable courage from all involved. I hope many people see this film.

    Autonomy is a fundamentally important feature of any civilised society.

    Whilst not everyone may need or want to utilise an assisted death it should be an individual's enshrined human right. I think there's no harm in allowing a terminally ill individual to choose when, where and in what manner they die.

    I believe that wanting a peaceful death at home, surrounded by one's loved ones, is entirely reasonable, especially when faced with the alternative of a harrowing, prolonged death in a lonely hospital ward. I see no harm in legalising voluntary euthanasia for the terminally ill, provided safeguards are in place, such as those demonstrated by Dignitas in this film, ensuring that no sufferer has been coerced.

  91. Gideon Cordover

    All voluntary euthanasia legislation throughout the world contains safeguards intended to stop clinically depressed individuals from having a physician-assisted death.

    In order to access an assisted death one must be deemed to be of sound mind by an independent doctor and therefore capable of making an informed decision.

    I would argue that legalizing voluntary euthanasia would provide an added safety-net, allowing doctors to come into contact with clinically depressed individuals that may otherwise never have been seen by the medical establishment.

    If one wants to suicide but their decision is clearly based on a depressive impulse, not rationality or profound intolerable suffering, any good doctor will spot this and be able to treat them for their depression. In this way fewer depressives will 'slip through the gaps' and commit violent suicide before ever having seen a doctor and had access to treatment.

    As we saw in the film, the sufferer is asked time and time again whether or not they are a) depressed and b) aware of the ramifications of their decision. They are also asked to consider their family and whether or not their death will have a negative affect on their dependents and loved ones.

    These safeguards also ensure that the sufferer is not simply being 'bumped off' by greedy relatives trying to secure an early inheritance.

    Murdering a relative for money will still be illegal and we will still have a criminal-justice system in place to deal with people that commit crimes.

    In all of these ways, I'm sure that legalising physican-assisted dying for the terminally ill will actually have a harm-minimizing effect.

  92. hr_bertelsen

    The question "who owns your body" was a rhetorical question, hence him not answering it afterwards, implying his own opinion, namely that you own your own body. On the other hand, by posing a rhetorical quesion, he also encourages you to think about it for yourself.

    It's ironic that you critizise Pratchett for being atheist, while you in the same breath draw the animal kingdom in as an argument, by using animals as kind of natural role models, since they're not prone to kill themselves. Surely you can't then be a christian, muslim or jew, since these religions usually concider humans more supreme than animals, and reject the idea of humans behaving like animals? Let me also correct you in that many different animals actually do kill themselves. Sick or old animals walk off from their pack, lie down and stop eating and drinking.

    You see this documentary as planting ideas into our heads, I see it as having a rational discussion about an important matter. I have not gotten any ideas, and thought it was quite unnerving to watch the old man die.

  93. foamzy

    As a caregiver in a home for Alzheimer patients and somatic patients, a theology student, and a daughter of a man with severe brain damage. I have seen my share of misery. People waking up scared knowing there is something wrong with them knowing they are acting strange but not stopping it. People who are lonely who tell me in a sane calm way my dear young nurse I think god has forgotten about me and I think it has been my time to get out of this boot.
    I know very well what the bible said about ending a life. But there is no glory in struggling to the end.
    and often I consider it very selfish of the family to force a loved one to stay because they can’t bare to say goodbye.
    I am a great fan of terry and a great fan of this documentary. For it shows that sometimes just sometimes we can take the easy way in the most elegant way. Instead of being humiliated by life it self.

  94. Christine81

    How do we know that the 'patient' is not suffering, that the poison hurts?In the US in order to kill prisoners who were sentenced to death, they gave them an injection . This death was supposed to be painless, but in the end it was discovered that the poison practically burns every organ inside the body and that the prisoner is in anguish..And the gentleman who passed away in the film didn't seem to be dying peace, when he asked for water. He seemed to be in anguish..

  95. Tamryn Louise

    They've been suffering most of their lives I am sure they can handle a few seconds of assumed "anguish". At the end of the day it is their decision not yours. They at least get what they asked for: A dignified death; something you don't get with a gunshot to the head or jumping off of a bridge...

  96. Tamryn Louise

    Considering the massive fees they have to pay for police investigations after a assisted suicide, I think its pretty decent.

  97. Tamryn Louise

    I think I hemorrhaged IQ points from reading that, you obviously missed the point of this documentary entirely. It seems it is you who is ignorant and brainwashed, deary.

  98. sistermaryannskeptic

    "I meant," said Ipslore bitterly, "what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?"

    Death thought about it.
    "Cats," he said eventually. "Cats are nice."

    Terry Pratchett, Sourcery

  99. TestTickle

    he did appear to be 'uncomfortable', but it was only for a few seconds, and then he fell asleep. if you find life painful, you are not likely to be put off by a few secs of discomfort. assisted suicide is not for people who r enjoying life. they already are in pain and see no value in prolong an existence consisting of pain to themselves and others.

    hmm. do u know if the prisoners actually experience that burning or are they already unconscious when their organs are getting..[ugh] ? i dont really want to think about that cuz i hate pain, but now i have to try and look it up.

  100. Elvis Tye

    I 100% believed he died in peace. I went for operation for about 5 times in my life and felt nothing after I was put to sleep by anaesthesia.

    In this case it's just an overdose of anaesthesia.

    He was a very lucky man to die with this type of dignity. Dignitas is very great for giving him such privilege to die in such peace and condition.

    It's a perfect ending of a life.

  101. spinbutton

    I adore Terry Pratchett's books and it breaks my heart to know what he is facing. My grandmother died of Alzhiemers and now my father in law is facing it. It is the saddest thing to lose your memories of your family.

  102. debbie casey

    "Cold, calculated and extremely dark."

    What film were you watching? This one seemed poignant and respectful to me. Some people are simply able to maintain their dignity in the face of strong emotion.

  103. Renevonn

    Ultimately its your choice as an individual where, when and how you'd like to go. Whether or not you exercise that right is another matter but when all the accounts are tallied up, you are the only person who gets to decide. Other people's feelings will be hurt, but feelings get hurt all the time such as during a break up.

    I'll never tell anyone they can't commit suicide if that's what they feel is the correct option. Its your life, you're free to do with it as you choose. I might not help you put an end to things but I won't condemn you for your choice either.

    Life, like certain movies, isn't for everyone. No one forces you to sit through a bad movie and if you want to leave the theater before the credits roll go right ahead, you've got nothing to be scared of. In my view, all this is just an illusion anyway and we're all free to leave it whenever we want. Refusing someone's right to end their life is to take life all too seriously. At the same token, ending it early could also mean the same thing xD

  104. Mandy Reiss

    RIP Terry, what a wonderful man.

  105. Jordana Rose Pratt

    ummm hes not dead yet. check your info

  106. Jodi Goldsmith

    It's so rare to see something presented intelligently, that I find this documentary valuable beyond it's subject matter. Terry Pratchett is sharing his own process, and the processes of several other people as they cope with one of the most momentous life issues, ie how to die with dignity and some degree of consciousness. Must confess I'm a huge Pratchett fan and I hope he's able to write for ages.

  107. Ivana Karlsson

    I just learned today that he is ill. I have been reading Pratchett with delight for many years, it's hard to think about that there will not be any more books from him!

  108. emanuele

    God gave us the life, our life belongs to him. We can't decide to stop our life.
    Disease and pain allow us to follow the path of Christ towards the ethernity!
    Let us meditate on all the love of Christ

  109. xxconspiracyxx

    Yeh lets meditate to the god who told Abraham to kill his poor baby innocent son, wow what a great god....

  110. Achems_Razor

    You have no business to say stuff like that to anybody.

    You have no pipeline to any of your invisible gods and certainly are not any spokesman for your invisible gods.

    So keep your diseases and pain and meditating and following your Christs to yourself.

    Funny religee's.

  111. Fox Howton

    Thank you to the uploader.

  112. Simeon Kwong

    actually..incorrect. God told Abraham to kill his son as a test of faith towards God. Abraham listened and followed instructions and God did not let Abraham kill his son. Instead, God blessed Abraham with lots of sons and daughters.

  113. Erik Enrique

    Espledid... thanks for share it and long live in our hearts to sir Terry Pratchett.... We will meet soon, sir.

  114. Donna Rideout

    Thank u for sharing that. It is what we all deserve, if that is what we choose. Done very respectfully. This is what I want....

  115. Maria Young

    exactly!

  116. Valentin

    Simeon Kwong tells the truth; for those who don't believe it, please feel free to read God's word (a.k.a. Holy Bible)
    Anyway, reading the Bible can only do you good!!!

    Thanks to the uploader

  117. Valentin

    The man is still here with us!!!

  118. jackmax

    How can reading the book of lies(a.k.a bible) be good for anyone?
    Firstly you can not prove the magic man(god) is real.
    That being the case the book of lies was written by the hand of man,, and then which version are you referring to the old or the new testaments as they differ in many way.

    The right to die should be yours if you wish.
    It seems odd that as a father, I have the right to turn off a life support system to my child, to end his suffering yet I do not have the same rights when it comes to my own health.

    As an adult at what stage in life should our health and quality of life be taken out of our own hands.

    If we are able to make an informed and balanced decision about this, who has the right to say your wrong?

    The terminally ill should not be dictated to by a select band of do gooders because of their belief in some unfounded magic man.
    Medical science may find the answer to many more health issues in the future.

  119. jackmax

    How is it that we will put down a sick or injured animal for humane reasons yet we don't allow us humans the same dignity.
    Dr Philip Nitschke said “Every person of sound mind should have the option of a peaceful death and it should not be up to others to assess or judge,”
    Euthanasia and assisted suicide should be an option to all terminally ill or suffers of chronic pain.
    Why doesn't society allow an individual with an incurable condition the right to seek assistance to end their own life?

  120. B-G

    A powerful and compassionate story. I experienced the decline of my dear brother, who had Huntington's Disease, and his personal decision to take his own life. I believe assisted dying, in an empathetic environment of educated and caring professionals is a far more humane way to end one's life than traumatic suicide.

  121. jaberwokky

    I would guess because of a deep seated fear of it devaluing life (human life, the 'exceptional life') in general or somehow opening a pandora's box of horrors to their way of living. Evidentally the future they predict is a whole lot scarier than the one we predict, so bad that their only recourse is being an obstacle to an inevitability.

    That's about as much sense as I can make of it.

  122. jaberwokky

    I think your words display tremendous compassion. Thanks.

  123. jackmax

    I understand your point, however it could be eliminated if we all excepted that we are after all just animals and the only sure thing in life is death.
    I've often said we are crueller to our own kind, than we are to all other animals.
    I have no problem with people wanting to fight to the bitter end, that's their right. However the right to choose ones end should be their as well. I understand that there are people that will try to manipulate the system if it was allowed, but you get that now.

  124. jaberwokky

    Agreed. But there it is again. The people that oppose this are never going to be comfortable with the idea that we are just animals, it's anathema to the special opinion they have of themselves. The crueller side of useless vanities.

  125. jackmax

    So true, it's a shame that some people have that terrible decease (vanity) and to me it's a shortcoming to many have.

  126. oQ

    Consider the options that perhaps we are not just animals. Humans are the only species that explains the world and perhaps create it too. I've gone that lane before, so I suspect you know what I mean.
    Vanity has nothing to do with it, for me at least....not that I don't know about physical vanity.

  127. oQ

    How many would die at the request of their family members? or lets say millions of people who had HIV had asked to die 10-15yrs ago.

  128. oQ

    I mostly agree with you. But how do you evaluate sound mind in so many people?

  129. docoman

    I'd suggest fear is a big factor. I had a little epiphany in hospital after an operation, (admittedly I was on morphine still ;) It's the fear of dying that is the 'hurdle', the hard part of it. Once you get past the fear, the rest is (pardon the pun) dead easy. Just let go.

    I read this recently..

    "Death is easy, they don't even know it, they're dead. Its hard for those that are around that person.

    Stupid is the same."

    It made me lol.

  130. docoman

    In that case, he was quoting Dr Nitschke, so the definition for 'sound mind' would no doubt be the medical one. Dr Nitschke is an Australian doctor (I believe he's a GP, I could be wrong) that has been quite vocal over some time about our Euthanasia laws here.

  131. jackmax

    That can be a difficulty, however with the amount of trained medical persons now available that task is made considerably easier. Of course there will be some that slip through the cracks, but it's a tried and true method most countries use in a court of law with arguable good results.

  132. jackmax

    I would imagine there would be those who let the family make that decision, but I'm talking about your own rights not other peoples..
    That's where the sound mind aspect must be in place for the individual to make that choice not their family.
    I see your point about HIV suffers however the same standards must be should apply to them as to all terminally ill persons. The final choice is the person suffering the illness/decease not the family.

  133. jackmax

    To say that we are not just animals is wrong I believe. When did the human being change from animal to something of a higher being?
    We know we didn't create the earth although some of us have that mind set.

  134. jaberwokky

    I try to consider us from as many angles as possible, that way my disappointment is more evenly spread. I think there's a certain selfishness displayed in a lot of the reasoning used for denying others a self determined end to their suffering. Maybe you don't see that.

    I'm aware of your views on higher consciousness of course so can understand why you may not like to think of us as just another animal. Animal or not, this choice of assisted suicide should still be every persons to make.

  135. jaberwokky

    I read somewhere a long time back that religious folk tend to have the hardest time when it comes to the end. I wonder do any of them experience a last minute conversion to atheism?

    That joke is priceless by the way. I lolled.

  136. oQ

    Nowhere do I say "I don't see that". All I'm saying is to make it lawful is a risky business for many.May be a death panel should be in place everywhere. One goes to university to study death psychology and then death decision making. Ho boy!
    By the way do you have "death café" in your neck of the wood? We do here in Canada, very interesting conversations come out of them.
    We may not be an other animal as we may not be in reality. In this dimension we do look like animals though and behave like them. That I agree!

  137. jaberwokky

    That argument for our special nature because of a unique skill is flawed in the sense that every species has unique skills. special is derived from the word species. We measure all else against our perceived 'specialness'. There's also a certain vanity attached to that.

  138. jaberwokky

    I agree, there's bound to be issue and concerns trying to implement something like this but that's not the real road block to its more widespread acceptance is it? And why shouldn't people be educated more about death? It's the final act of every life but most people avoid it.

    We don't have those death cafes around my area but I wouldn't mind sitting in on one, provided the place isn't full of hipsters,goths and emos. Those crazy kids.

    As far as being animals goes it occurs to me that maybe the rest of the animals look at us like some sort of alien presence.

  139. docoman

    Some of that is studied I believe, in Palliative Care. I recall seeing a list of probable emotions that someone goes through when they find out they're terminal. While we're different in ways, some things we generally react to in one of only a few ways.
    I've not heard of a 'death cafe' around here, but it wouldn't surprise me if there was one. I've not exactly got my 'ear to the ground' with the cafe's around here. :)

  140. Blue lightning

    I like how he was knighted then went and made himself a sword with meteor iron ect to make it magical.

    -Sir Terry Pratchett

  141. elmer pastorini

    Americans do not honor their family, elders or the ill. My mom was tortured to death in a CA nursing home, abused, and died a horrific death for no other reason that she was expendable to my family. God forgive me for not forcing her to live with me in NV which she hated or quitting my work to care for her. I will never forgive myself. This is how it should be. Again, read John in the Bible thoroughly. If you are not rich, young or shallow, you are of no value in the US. If you are elderly or disabled, a pariah. God bless Dignitas. Mommy, forgive me for not knowing of them. I hope I can die there with dignity. God please forgive those that know not what they do as Christ always did. God Bless the lovely wife and the great man who were themselves, classy, funny and loving. God Bless Dignitas for a dignified return to the creator for He always understood. Sometimes enough is enough. And it is time to go home. Please forgive me, my family, and the choices I made in the past that caused me not to have a bank account that allowed me to me to be lovable. Crazy world. But great people out there that get it.

  142. Juli Alexander

    Pro-euthanasia.

  143. Juli Alexander

    "Sound mind"? That is the issue. With an epidemic of dementias out there and money to be made by private and for-profit corporations, it is in their financial best interest to keep alive people until the money runs out. Sociopaths exist in many levels of society. Many who simly see the workd differently but are of no risk to others should also be allowed to die, if that is their choice, but it defies the legal definition. USA is a nation of lawyers and, all too often, corrupt judges. Until the mid-80’s, homosexuality was considered a mental aberration as defined by the DSM (read, "Book of Woe". So if a person suffers from a perhaps undetectd brain injury, aneurism or other injury or illness, they must play it out, in an institution. I want government out of my panties and out of my head. I choose, and as long as my choice does not harm another, nobody else's opinion should matter.

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