Death is perhaps the most personal choice there is. And yet governments stand in the way between a person’s choice and their abilities. The case for euthanasia has been made by many experts, yet it is not commonly a part of society’s laws in dealing with ill or injured people. There was a case made in France in 2008 by a woman with a tumor on her face, but before the courts had made a decision, she died.
The circumstances of her death were not immediately clear. Sebire, 52, was diagnosed nearly eight years ago with esthesioneuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer. The illness left her blind, and with no sense of smell or taste, her lawyer said. She could not use morphine to ease the intense eye pain because of the side effects. A court in the city of Dijon rejected Sebire’s request to be allowed to receive a lethal dose of barbiturates under a doctor’s supervision. It refused the request for doctor-assisted suicide because of French law and out of concern for medical ethics.
Sebire’s case revived a debate in France about the right to die. She received national attention after the media published heartbreaking before-and-after pictures that made her suffering instantly apparent. The tumor had burrowed through her sinuses and nasal cavities, causing her nose to swell to several times its original size, and pushing one of her eyes out of her head.
Unlike in France, euthanasia is legal in both Belgium and the Netherlands, and Luxembourg is in the process of passing a law to allow it. In Switzerland, counselors or physicians can prepare the lethal dose, but patients must take it on their own. The patient who continues to suffer from an ailment not curable by human methods wants divine intervention to be released of the pain. And since God ain’t vela enough to appear every second second responding to a prayer, humans resort to the second form of intervention. Or one could say termination – of pain, misery, and of life.
Proponents: Assisted death can be recognised as a reasonable solution to one in last stage. Euthanasia should be humanized and legalized.