A friend of mine who uses a wheelchair was recently approached by a stranger who crossed over the road to talk to her. Without knowing anything about her, he told her that he supported her right to die with dignity through assisted suicide. She told him that she was more concerned with her right to live than her right to die.
Assisted suicide should be legalised for terminally ill people, according to the Commission on Assisted Dying, chaired and funded by advocates of legalising assisted dying. No doubt a commission set up by opponents would come to a contrary conclusion. Some will applaud the strict conditions proposed, others fear that such measures would in time lead to euthanasia on a wider scale.
It is disappointing, says Savi Hensman, that so many people who are passionate about the assisted dying debate (whether for or against legalisation) do not seem nearly as concerned to tackle violations of dignity which can be prevented at present.
A TV documentary showing Craig Ewert, a motor neuron disease sufferer, marked the first time footage of an assisted death - including the moment of death - has been broadcast in Britain. It has provoked an intense debate.