Assisted Dying

Rob Meltzer

It was my turn to monitor Nominally Palestinian Radio last night, and I was listening to the Diane Rehm Show. The topic was a hand wringing discussion about “assisted living” versus nursing home and the like. What astonished me was a complete absence of an equally important idea–that of assisted dying, the concept that a lot of people don’t want to be warehoused as a drooling idiot in their dotage, and that our society does not recognize the right of an individual not to be a burden to their children, the government or the community once any reasonable standard of enjoyment of life has ended. One of the downsides of global warming is that we are running out of ice floes on which to place our elders. Curious that the same people who rant about the unrestricted right to murder the unborn seem to have no problem with preventing the elderly from having a determined and planned death with dignity. One of the issues last night was the sheer number of Baby Boomers headed for warehousing,and the likelihood of bankrupting themselves, their children or the tax payer to deal with the problem. I bet that if a survey were to be taken, a vast majority of Americans would opt out of becoming part of the health care gulag if such a thing were possible. The time to have this debate is now.