World Blog – In controversial move, BBC airs assisted suicide on TV.
“In most places, and in the U.K., you run the risk of prosecution – and possibly prison – if you help a loved one to take his or her own life.
So a curious branch of the tourist industry has opened up, where those who want or need help to kill themselves travel to a house on an industrial estate just outside Zurich. The authorities won’t allow it in a residential area.”
“Switzerland has permitted assisted suicide under certain criteria since 1940. Those who want to take the final step can make their last journey to the Dignitas clinic there and for a fee, they offer what they call a “dignified death,” medically-supervised, counseled, and legal.
So it was to Dignitas that Peter Smedley traveled, and was filmed ending his life just a few days before Christmas last year. He would have preferred to die at home, but that choice was not open to him.”
Is this the new route reality tv is going to go? Not only do I not agree with assisted suicide, I think it is reprehensible to show it as a tv show. This is just wrong.
I don’t think they did it to sensationalise it for entertainment. I didn’t watch it myself, but it is part of an ongoing debate about whether it should be allowed here as there are people campaigning for it. I find the whole issue very difficult, not being in favour myself, but I can understand why people would be. After all, I had to have my cat put down and the implication was very much that had I refused to do so I could have been prosecuted for cruelty! If she was suffering and that was the kindest thing, how much more so for humans? I mean, we now have ways of prolonging life (and thus suffering) for many years. I suppose there is a difference between refusing such treatment and actually choosing death, but I can see the arguments on both sides really.
What worries me a bit about it, is that if it ever did become legal, with the pressure on resources at the moment I can’t help but wonder if there would come a time when people felt a pressure to die rather than use a hospital bed. And that would be so wrong.
I didn’t see what you are talking about but I did recently watch the documentary about Oregon assisted suicide and during the filming a few people passed. It was filmed with dignity and also as a way to pass this knowledge on to others – not as some reality tv show. If it was done that way, it would be completely wrong. The end of life is a blessing just like a birth and it needs to be treated that way.