Whose life is it anyway? Senate to consider assisted suicide
“There is no more fundamental indication of individual freedom than the ability to decide what to do with our own body,” Senator Leyonhjelm writes. “If the law prevents us from making free choices about it then we are not really free at all; our bodies belong to the State.”
“Nothing prevents us from having our body tattooed from head to toe, cutting our hair in the strangest ways possible, or inserting rings, studs and other paraphernalia through our skin and appendages…It is the same when we choose to end our lives… We have both a fundamental and legal right to choose whether we wish to continue living.”
“But there is a catch. The law says we are only permitted to die by our own hand, without assistance…If we are too weak or incapacitated to end our lives ourselves, we are condemned to suffer until nature takes its course. It is a serious offence for anyone to either help us die, at our instruction, or even to tell us how to do it for ourselves.”
“Most fair-minded people accept that painlessly terminating the suffering of animals is an act of compassion. But animals are not people and cannot give consent. For us humans, even when we give consent and beg for help, the law prohibits the same compassion.”
“Legalisation of assisted suicide is long overdue in Australia. Opinion polls show more than 80% of Australians are in favour, across all political parties. If free people own their own lives, they must be free to end them if they wish.”
Senator Leyonhjelm says that if attempts by the Australian Greens to introduce a Dying With Dignity bill are defeated, the Liberal Democrats will pursue other avenues to advance the cause of legalising assisted suicide.